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Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card Review

Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card Review

*Editorial Note: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

This article was last updated Feb 14, 2019, but some terms and conditions may have changed or are no longer available. For the most accurate and up to date information please consult the terms and conditions found on the issuer website.

If you travel regularly on business and prefer to stay at Marriott-branded hotels, having the new Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card is a serious option to consider, thanks to new perks and a generous welcome offer.

Now that you have access to more than 6,700 hotels under the rebranded Marriott Bonvoy™ loyalty program and changes in spending categories, you’ll have more ways to earn and redeem points with this new card. The Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card comes with the travel and purchase benefits you want with an American Express-branded card. It also comes with tools that help you manage you and your employees’ expenses on the card, plus access to concierge services that are helpful while on the road.

Read The New Marriott Rewards Program: What You Need to Know.

The Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card is a great option for those who are Bonvoy loyalty program members. If not, then you may want to look at another travel-branded credit card, such as the American Express® Business Gold Card, which gives businesses more spending flexibility, better ways to earn and redeem points and doesn’t tie you to the Marriott brand.

Where the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card stands out

  • 6x points at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.

  • Earn 75,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.

  • 4x points at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.

Highlights
  • Earn 75,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • 6x points at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels. 
  • 4x points at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping. 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at a participating hotel. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Enjoy complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite status with your Card. Plus, earn Gold Elite status after making $35,000 in eligible purchases on your Card in a calendar year.
  • Terms apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card

More Info

There’s an annual fee of $125. New cardmembers earn 75,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.

Earn 6x points at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels, 4x points at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping. 2x points on all other eligible purchases. It’s nice that companies can earn higher points in spending categories that are important for running their businesses.

Card perks include automatic Silver Bonvoy status, a free night at hotels at or under 35,000 Bonvoy points and credit for 15 nights towards the next level of Bonvoy elite status each calendar year. Receive free high-speed Wi-Fi access at participating hotels. You can also redeem points at more than 6,700 Marriott Bonvoy hotels, along with flights, car rentals, vacation packages, gift cards and Marriott Bonvoy Moments experiences.

Another big attraction is the ability to transfer Bonvoy points to more than 40 airline frequent flyer programs, mostly at a 3:1 ratio. You also receive a 15,000-point bonus every time you transfer 60,000 points to a participating frequent flyer program.

You get free cards for your employees, and those cards earn points for purchases. You can designate an account manager to administer the card and monitor employee spending. You also get access to Spend ManagerSM, which helps you manage card expenses by allowing receipts and notes to be added to transactions either via desktop or mobile device, plus transfer transaction data from online statements directly into a QuickBooks account.

You can also set up account alerts to help avoid late payments, notify of irregular activity and monitor spending on employee cards. At the end of the year, you get a summary of card spending, broken down by month and purchase type.

Where the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card falls short

Unlike other hotel-branded business credit cards, this one doesn’t give you automatic gold status. You must spend $35,000 or more in a calendar year to upgrade to Bonvoy gold.

While the card comes with a good list of travel-related benefits, it doesn’t have trip interruption/trip cancellation insurance, something that’s valued by road warriors.

Additional Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card card benefits

  • Access to free, unlimited Wi-Fi on up to four devices at more than one million hotspots worldwide with the Boingo American Express Preferred Plan.
  • Travel accident insurance
  • Baggage insurance
  • Global Assist® Hotline
  • Roadside assistance
  • Car rental loss and damage insurance
  • Extended warranty
  • Purchase protection

*Image source: Marriott.com

Compare it with the American Express® Business Gold Card

  • Earn up to $500 back in the form of statement credits by purchasing qualifying services with FedEx using your American Express® Business Gold Card within the first 3 months of Card membership, Limited time Offer ends 11/06/2019*

  • Get 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month*

  • No foreign transaction fees & many helpful business tools*

Highlights
  • Earn up to $500 back in the form of statement credits by purchasing qualifying services with FedEx using your American Express® Business Gold Card within the first 3 months of Card membership.
  • Limited time Offer ends 11/06/2019.*
  • MORE REWARDS: Get 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month**
  • **4X points apply to the first $150,000 in combined purchases from these 2 categories each calendar year.*
  • AIRLINE BONUS: Get 25% points back after you use points for all or part of an eligible flight booked with Amex Travel, up to 250,000 points back per calendar year.*
  • PAY OVER TIME OPTION: A flexible payment option to help manage cash flow on purchases of $100 or more.*
  • EXPENSE MANAGEMENT TOOLS: Connect to Quickbooks, access SpendManagerSM, receive a Year-End Summary, and more.*
  • *Terms Apply
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for American Express® Business Gold Card

More Info

If you don’t want to be tied to one hotel loyalty program and want more flexibility in earning and redeeming miles, you may want to consider the American Express® Business Gold Card as an alternative to the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card.

Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card American Express® Business Gold Card
Annual fee $125 $295
Regular purchase APR 17.74% - 26.74% Variable 16.24% - 24.24% Variable
Rewards 4x points at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping. 2x points on all other eligible purchases. Get 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month*
Welcome offer 75,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. Limited Time Offer: Earn up to $500 back in the form of statement credits by purchasing qualifying services with FedEx using your American Express® Business Gold Card within the first 3 months of Card membership, Limited time Offer ends 11/06/2019*
Foreign transaction fee None

None

Get 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month* It’s nice that you can choose two spending categories to earn higher rewards, including airfare purchased directly from airlines, advertising in select media (online, TV, radio), purchases made directly from select technology providers of computer hardware, software, and cloud solutions, gas stations, restaurants and shipping.

Note that there’s a $150,000 yearly cap on your chosen spending categories; after that, it drops to a point per dollar spent, even on employee cards.

Like the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, the American Express® Business Gold Card comes with business tools such as free employee cards, an account manager, access to Spend ManagerSM and the ability to transfer transaction data from your online statement directly into a QuickBooks account.

But you also receive up to a year of free of G Suite Basic — which includes video conferencing, cloud storage, file sharing and more with G Suite by Google Cloud — for up to three users as statement credits for purchases during first 12 months of card membership. You must subscribe at gsuite.google.com and use the card as the primary form of payment. There’s also up to a year free of ZipRecruiter Standard, also as a statement credit after subscribing at ziprecruiter.com and using the card to pay for it.

Transfer your Membership Rewards® points to 18 airline and three hotel loyalty programs. Use your points for travel, gift cards, online shopping and paying for points on websites like Amazon.com, Ticketmaster.com and Walmart.com. You can also donate your points to charities through Just Giving.

When you book flights at American Express Travel using Membership Rewards Pay with Points, you’ll get 25% of them back, up to 250,000 points back per calendar year.

The card comes with the Pay Over Time option, which lets you carry a balance with interest on purchases of $100 or more. And it doesn’t come with a pre-set spending limit, giving you flexibility when it comes to purchasing power.

The American Express® Business Gold Card offers most of the same travel and purchase benefits as the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card; it adds return protection, but doesn’t come with the Boingo American Express Preferred Plan.

However, the card also comes with customer support from Relationship Care Service, where trained professionals provide business support. You also get an automatic boost in your credit limit as needed, based on past use of the card, payment history, credit record and financial resources.

Get access to travel discounts and amenities when you enroll in The Travel Collection by Travel Leaders Group at no additional cost. Plus, the Hotel Collection offers cardmembers a $75 hotel credit on qualifying charges, plus a room upgrade upon arrival when available, at americanexpress.com/hc.

All this comes at a higher annual fee of $295, which is more than the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card’s annual fee of $125.

The bottom line

The Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card offers a generous welcome offer, higher points in spending categories that are important to businesses and some nice travel and purchase perks. If you’re loyal to the more than 6,700 hotels under the Marriott family, you can redeem those points for hotel room and upgrades, along with travel, gift cards and unique experiences.

But if you don’t want to be tied to using your points with Marriott and its partners, the American Express® Business Gold Card may be a better option.

Its higher annual fee comes with more benefits than the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, including an ability to choose which spending categories you want for higher points, stronger tools to help manage your business and extra travel, purchase protection and business perks. It also has more ways to redeem your points with the Membership Rewards program.

Marriott has done a good job beefing up the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card. And its limited-time welcome offer is a great way to entice new cardmembers. But you must be loyal to Marriott hotel brands to get the most out of this card.

The American Express® Business Gold Card is best for those who want more choice when it comes time to earn and redeem Membership Rewards points. It’s also good for businesses that want benefits that help them manage operations and don’t mind paying a higher annual fee.

Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.


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