If your yearly trips include a lot of (or even a few) Marriott stays, having a Marriott Credit Card in your wallet is a no-brainer.

Higher elite status, bonus points, several free nights (depending on your spend) and a few extra perks make for a compelling deal.

Even though the benefits vary from card to card, they are more or less variations of the above features.

Marriott Credit Cards are currently available in the USA, Canada, the UK, the UAE and Japan.

How to choose the right Marriott Credit Card?

If you just want to compare various cards, feel free to skip this section.

Apart from eligibility and other standard requirements, picking a travel reward card ultimately boils down to evaluating the following:

  • other cards in your wallet
  • fees
  • sign up bonus
  • guaranteed benefits: elite status, free nights etc.

Other cards in your wallet

Even though we might be looking at Marriott cards and tier benefits in isolation, ultimately you can pay using only one card at a time.

It’s important to be clear which card gives you maximum benefits and rewards. It’s okay to get a card just for status and use at Marriott properties only, but knowing your objective will help pick the right card.

If you decide to make Marriott your primary card, the benefits would be way more, but the other card you already have might still be better value. Do your maths.

Card Fee

There are several fees associated with a card. Joining fee, annual fee, APR, foreign exchange etc. Make sure you know and understand them before applying.

As far as annual fee is concerned, in my opinion, it’s okay to go for a higher annual fee card. Generally the benefits outweigh the fee.

One free night, elite status or just the higher earning rate is more than enough to offset a couple of hundred dollars fee.

Sign-up bonus

Even though they come with a spend requirement, sign-up bonuses are pretty attractive.

However, sign-up bonus is one time and the annual fee is recurring. So don’t get a card just for the bonus.

Even though many blogs recommend it, cancelling and applying for new cards regularly just for the sign-up bonus is not a good idea. It reflects badly on your credit history and ultimately banks catch up.

Guaranteed benefits

This is the most important part to think about when applying for a card. Guaranteed benefits are something you will use year after year. Some of the common guaranteed benefits are:

Elite Status: Either default or upgraded Marriott Bonvoy status with your card. Tip: Target for at least gold. You can read about Marriott Bonvoy Levels to compare the benefits.

Free Night(s): Some cards offer a free night at any Marriott property every year. This itself is worth more than the annual fee in most cases.

Elite Status Nights: Bonus elite status nights to get to the next level faster.

Marriott Bonvoy Points on Spend: You earn Marriott Bonvoy points every time you use your card. Generally double, when you use your card at Marriott properties and website.

Marriott Credit Cards in the USA

Chase - Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

One of the most balanced Marriott credit cards with benefits matching the annual fee. Without complicated milestones.

Annual Fee: $95

Sign-up Bonus: Spend $3000 in your first 3 months from account opening and earn 75,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points.

Guaranteed Benefits:

  • Earn 6 points for every $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
  • Earn 2 points for every $1 spent on purchases anywhere else.
  • Upgrade to Gold Status on spending $35,000 on purchases each account year.
  • Get 1 Free Night Award worth up to 35,000 points and Silver Elite Status, yearly after the account anniversary.
  • Get 15 Elite Night Credits yearly towards the next level of Marriott Bonvoy Elite status.

Other Benefits:

  • Get reimbursement for baggage delays over 6 hours by passenger carriers up to $100 / day for 5 days.
  • Get luggage damage or theft cover, up to $3,000/passenger if you or your immediate family member’s luggage is damaged or lost by the carrier.
  • Get travel delay cover for you and your family. You are covered for unreimbursed expenses, such as meals and lodging, up to $500/ticket if your common carrier travel is delayed more than 12 hours or requires an overnight stay.
  • Get up to $500/claim up to $50,000/account damage or theft cover against damage or theft for 120 days on your new purchases.
  • Complimentary in-room Wi-Fi
  • No foreign transaction fees for purchases made outside the US.
  • No expiration of your points as long as you make purchases on your credit card every 2 years.
  • Get complimentary Visa Signature Concierge Service 24 hours a day. Get tickets to sports and entertainment events, make dinner reservations and assistance in sending gifts.

Chase - Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card

No Annual Fee Sign-up Bonus: Spend $1000 in your first 3 months from account opening and earn 30,000 Bonus points.

Guaranteed Benefits :

  • Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite Status. Get 15 Elite Night Credits yearly towards the next level of Marriott Bonvoy Elite status. 15 nights automatically qualify you for Marriott Silver Level.
  • Earn 3 points for every $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
  • Earn 2 points for every $1 spent on travel purchases - airfare, taxis, trains.
  • Earn 1 point for every $1 spent on purchases anywhere else.

Other Benefits :

  • Get reimbursement for baggage delays over 6 hours by passenger carriers up to $100 / day for 5 days.
  • Get luggage damage or theft cover, up to $3,000/passenger, if you or your immediate family member’s luggage is damaged or lost by the carrier.
  • Get travel delay cover for you and your family. You are covered for unreimbursed expenses, such as meals and lodging, up to $500/ticket if your common carrier travel is delayed more than 12 hours or requires an overnight stay.
  • Get up to $500/claim or up to $50,000/account damage or theft cover against damage or theft for 120 days on your new purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees for purchases made outside the US
  • No expiration of your points as long as you make purchases on your credit card every 2 years.
  • Get complimentary Visa Signature Concierge Service 24 hours a day. Get tickets to sports and entertainment events, make dinner reservations and assistance in sending gifts.

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card

The most premium Marriott credit card in the USA, Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card comes with a hefty fee. However, if you find yourself indulging at Marriott’s luxury properties way too often, this might be a good deal.

Annual Fee: $450

Sign-up Bonus (Limited period offer till Jan 13th 2021):

  • 100,000 bonus points for spending $5,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Additional 25,000 bonus points after the first anniversary of Card Membership.
  • Complimentary Platinum Elite status with your card for one year starting February 2021 till January 2022

Sign-up Bonus (Regular):

  • Get 75,000 bonus points for spending $3,000 in the first three months of membership.
  • Complimentary Gold Elite status.

Guaranteed Benefits:

  • Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite Status.
  • Get 1 Free Night Award worth up to 50,000 points, every year after the account anniversary.
  • Complimentary Priority Pass Select membership, with unlimited lounge visits for primary card holder and up to two guests per visit.
  • Get up to $300 in statement credits yearly for eligible purchases at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
  • Get up to $100 in property credit on direct booking for a 2 night minimum stay at The Ritz-Carlton or St. Regis.
  • Earn 6 points for every $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
  • Earn 3 points at restaurants and on flights booked directly with airlines.
  • Earn 2 points on purchases anywhere else.
  • Get 15 Elite Night Credits yearly towards the next level of Marriott Bonvoy Elite status.

Other Benefits :

  • Get either $100 statement credit available every 4 years after you apply for Global Entry or up to $85 statement credit available every 4.5 years after you apply for a 5-year membership through any Authorized Enrollment Provider for TSA Pre and charge the application fee to your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card.
  • If approved, for Global Entry, at no additional charge, get access to TSA Pre and expedited screening at selected airports.
  • Complimentary in-room Wi-Fi
  • No foreign transaction fees for purchases made outside the US.

Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card

Annual Fee: $125

Sign-up Bonus (Limited period offer till Jan 13th 2021):

  • 100,000 bonus points for spending $5,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Up to $150 back in statement credits for eligible purchases on U.S. advertising in select media within the first six months of card membership.
  • Complimentary Platinum Elite status with your card for one year starting February 2021 till January 2022

Sign-up Bonus (Regular):

  • Get 75,000 bonus points for spending $3,000 in the first three months of membership.
  • Complimentary Silver Elite status.

Guaranteed Benefits :

  • Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite status
  • Get 1 Free Night Award worth up to 35,000 points yearly after the account anniversary.
  • Get an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60,000 in purchases on your Card yearly.
  • Earn 6 points for every $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
  • Earn 4 points at restaurants, gas stations and on purchases for shipping, wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers.
  • Earn 2 points on purchases anywhere else.
  • Get 15 Elite Night Credits yearly towards the next level of Marriott Bonvoy Elite status.

Other Benefits:

  • Complimentary in-room Premium Wi-Fi
  • No forgien transaction fees for purchases made outside the US.

Marriott Credit Card in Canada

Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card

Even though this is the only Marriott Credit Card available in Canada, it’s a pretty good one. Reasonable fees and benefits. The only thing missing, in my opinion, is lack of Gold Elite status for card holders without the $30,000 spend requirement.

Annual Fee: $120 Sign-up Bonus: Get 50,000 Welcome Bonus points after you spend $1,500 in your first 3 months of your card membership.

Guaranteed Benefits:

  • Get 1 free award night every year after the account anniversary.
  • Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite Status.
  • Earn 5 points for every $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy properties.
  • Earn 2 points on all other purchases.
  • Get 15 Elite Night Credits yearly attaining towards the next level of Marriott Bonvoy.
  • When you spend $30,000 in a year, you get upgraded to Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status.
  • No annual fee on add-on cards.

Marriott Credit Card in the United Kingdom.

Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card

Annual Fee: £75

Sign-up Bonus: Earn 20,000 Bonus points when you spend £3,000 in your first 3 months of Card membership.

Guaranteed Benefits:

  • Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite status.
  • Spent £15,000 in a year and get upgraded to Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status.
  • Get 15 elite night credits yearly.
  • Get 10 points for each £1 of eligible spend at Marriott properties before 31st Jan 2021.
  • Get 2 points for every £1 spent on the card.
  • Invite a friend to earn 9,000 bonus points on every approval (Up to 10 in a year)

Marriott Credit Card in the United Arab Emirates

Marriott Bonvoy World Mastercard Credit Card

Annual Fee: 1500AED

Sign-up Bonus: Get 100,000 bonus points on fee payment and an additional 100,000 bonus points on cumulative retail purchases of US$10,000 in the first 3 billing statements.

Guaranteed Benefits:

  • Get upgraded to Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status automatically
  • Get 1 Free Night Award upon card renewal yearly, redeemable for a 1 night stay worth up to 35,000 points.
  • Amazon Prime Membership with Prime Delivery, Prime Video and Prime Deals.
  • Unlimited complimentary access for the Cardholder to over 900 lounges worldwide.
  • Earn 6 points per US$1 spent at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy.
  • Earn 3 points per US$1 on all other expenses.
  • Earn 3 points per US$1 on international spends.
  • Get 5 Elite Night Credits towards the next level of Elite status.
  • Concierge team support.

Marriott Credit Card in Japan

Starwood Preferred Guest American Express card

Annual Fee : 34,100 yen

Sign-up Bonus: Earn 30,000 points for spending 100,000 yen or more within 3 months.

Guaranteed Benefits :

  • Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status.
  • Earn 6 points for every JPY 100 spent.
  • 15% discount on food and beverages at restaurants in participating properties in the Asia-Pacific region.
  • Enjoy a free night award for each yearly renewal of the card.
  • 5 elite nights credit yearly.

Marriott Credit Card in India

There are rumors that Marriott Bonvoy Credit Card would be launching in India soon. However, nothing has been officially announced yet.

Given Marriott’s existing partnership with Amex in India for certain cards, I won’t be surprised to see a Marriott Bonvoy Amex Card in India.