Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card Review

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card Review

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Last updated on May 24, 2020

Since Marriott’s merger with SPG hotels, the company decided to keep offering co-branded credit cards–one of them being the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card, for the occasional traveler.

Although it has some nice features that more than make up for the $95 annual fee, there are some downsides as well. Before submitting your application, read our review to decide whether the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card is the one for you.

Current Sign-Up Bonus

You can earn 100,000 bonus points if you spend $5,000 in qualifying purchases within three months of account opening.

To put it another way, 35,000 points is enough for a mid-tier room at the Marriott. Which more than makes up for the $95 annual fee you’ll need to pay.

Features and Benefits of the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

Yes, you do have to pay a $95 annual fee, but the perks could offset what you’re paying.

Here are some of the features of the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless:

  • Silver elite status – You’ll automatically be enrolled in Marriott’s silver status. Benefits include access to an elite reservation line, a 10% bonus on points earned and priority late checkouts which is pretty handy if you have a late flight. Plus, if you spend $35,000 on qualifying purchases each year or book a minimum of 25 nights at Marriott hotels, you can upgrade to Gold status. Extra perks include complimentary room upgrades based on availability.
  • Earn more points – Cardholders get six points for every dollar you spend at qualifying Marriott hotels and one point per dollar on all other purchases. Since you get free Bonvoy Silver status, you have the ability to earn another 11 points in addition to the points you earn on your credit cards at participating Marriott hotels.
  • Elite credits – Get 15 elite night credits each year–it’s spread out to all Bonvoy credit cards in case you have more than one. It can lower the qualification requirements for Gold elite status or higher because you’ll only need to book 35 nights instead of 50 per calendar year.
  • Free night award – Each year when you renew your card, you’ll get a free certificate that’s worth up to 35,000 points. That’s good for any category one to five hotel.

How to Redeem Points

Points you earn can be used to book nights at Marriott hotels. If you plan carefully, you can get a lot of value out of your points depending on how you redeem them. In other words, depending on where you want to stay you can maximize your redemptions.

You have a choice of category-one to category-eight hotels, with category eight being luxury hotels (therefore, the most expensive). For instance, it only costs 7,500 points to get a category one hotel, 35,000 for a category five hotel all the way to 85,000 points to book a category 8 hotel. That means with your sign-up bonus, you can get 13 nights at a category one hotel, or two nights at a category five hotel.

Whichever type of hotel you choose, consider taking advantage of Marriott’s promotion, where you get your fifth night for free. So if you plan on staying five days, use your points to book four nights at a hotel so you can get the fifth night for free.

Aside from hotels, you can also use points for special experiences, gift card, rental cars or transfer it to one of Marriott’s airline partners. Typically speaking, you’ll get more value out of redeeming your points for hotel stays.

Pros and Cons

Even though the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card comes with a lot of great features, it has some potential downsides as well. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of this credit card.

Pros

  • Offers a large sign-up bonus
  • Earn extra points when staying at Marriott hotels
  • One free night each time you renew your card
  • Free Silver Elite status
  • Many redemption opportunities (e.g. a large hotel selection, ability to transfer to airline partners, etc.)

Cons

  • Requires a hefty minimum spend to earn the bonus (other cards with higher rewards may be a better choice)
  • Marriott loyalists can be handsomely rewarded, but if you like other hotel brands you won’t get a lot of value out of the perks
  • There’s an annual fee

Who Is It Best For?

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card is probably best for those who are occasional travelers or are on a small travel budget–you’re not into high luxury travel and rather maximize your rewards earnings. You may not get as many benefits as some of the other Marriott co-branded credit cards, but the $95 annual fee is hard to beat.

Plus, if you’re a Marriott fan or want to participate in a hotel loyalty program that offers you a wide range of choices, this might be the card for you. That’s because you can take advantage of perks like late checkout, free nights, extra rewards points and more.

However, if you are a frequent traveler or enjoy the finer parts of travel like access to airport lounges, concierge services or travel credits, you’re out of luck. If you’re willing to pay a higher annual fee, then there are plenty of alternatives that give you a better bang for your buck.

Still, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card is worth looking at if you’re looking for an entry-level card to dip your toes into earning free hotel stays.

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