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Here’s what is going on in the world of points & miles.

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Virgin Atlantic to Join SkyTeam Early 2023

Virgin Atlantic has announced that it will join SkyTeam in early 2023. This is a logical choice for the airline that already has strong ties with Delta, Air France and KLM. Virgin Atlantic is looking to have their membership complete by the end of January, but isn’t firm on that date at this time.

This won’t have significant impact for most travelers, as the biggest benefit will be reciprocal benefits for status holders. It will expand booking and codeshare options with Virgin Atlantic points, but most SkyTeam members of significant value to U.S. based fliers are already partners.

Currently, the following airlines are part of SkyTeam:

  • Aerolineas Argentinas
  • Aeromexico
  • Air Europa
  • Air France
  • China Airlines
  • China Eastern Airlines
  • Czech Airlines
  • Delta Air Lines
  • Garuda Indonesia
  • ITA Airways
  • Kenya Airways
  • KLM
  • Korean Air
  • Middle East Airlines
  • Saudia
  • TAROM
  • Vietnam Airlines
  • XiamenAir

New & Updated Marriott Card Offers

Today Marriott Bonvoy® had new card launches and changes to two existing card products.

New Cards

Marriott Bonvoy Bountiful™ Card from Chase

This card has a $250 annual fee and an initial sign-up bonus of 125,000 Marriott Bonvoy points when you spend $4,000 in the first three months from account opening.

The card gives the account holder automatic Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status and 15 Elite Night Credits per calendar year.

After $15,000 in spending each calendar year, the cardholder receives 1 Free Night Award for a night worth up to 50,000 points.  The awards should be able to be topped up with an additional 15,000 points for a night up to 65,000.

Marriott stays paid with the card earn 6x and cardholders receive an extra 1,000 bonus points per stay.

Cardholders earn 4x on the first $15,000 in spend each year on grocery stores and dining and 2x on all other purchases.

Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card

This card has a $250 annual fee and an initial sign-up bonus of 125,000 Marriott Bonvoy points when you spend $4,000 in the first three months from account opening.

The card gives the account holder automatic Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status and 15 Elite Night Credits per calendar year.

After $15,000 in spending each calendar year, the cardholder receives 1 Free Night Award for a night worth up to 50,000 points.  The awards should be able to be topped up with an additional 15,000 points for a night up to 65,000.

Marriott stays paid with the card earn 6x and cardholders receive an extra 1,000 bonus points per stay.

Cardholders earn 4x on the first $15,000 in combined spend each year on restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S. and U.S. Supermarkets and 2x on all other purchases.

Card Updates

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card
The annual fee for the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card has increased from $450 to $650 with a current sign-up bonus of 150,000 Marriott Bonvoy points when you spend $5,000 in the first three months from account opening.

The card gives the account holder automatic Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status (was Gold Elite) and 25 Elite Night Credits (was 15) per calendar year.

Each calendar year, the cardholder gets up $300 (up to $25 per month) in statement credits for eligible purchases made on the card at restaurants worldwide.  This replaces the $300 annual credit at Marriott properties.

Cardholders receive 1 Free Night Award every year after their card renewal month for a night worth up to 85,000 points.  The awards should be able to be topped up with an additional 15,000 points for a night up to 100,000

Effective 1/1/23, each calendar year after spending $60,000 on eligible purchases on their card, the cardholder will be eligible to select an Earned Choice Award benefit. The Earned Choice Award benefits are Five Suite Night Awards™, $750 Off a Bed from Marriott Bonvoy® Boutiques or a Free Night Award with a redemption value up to 85K points.

Chase Ritz Carlton Rewards Visa Infinite

For those who hold the no longer publicly available Chase Ritz Carlton Rewards Visa Infinite, the Free Night Award has increased from a 50,000 award to a 85,000 award.  Everything else about the card, including the $450 annual fee, remains unchanged.  It is still possible to get the card by product changing a Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™, Marriott Bonvoy Bountiful™ or Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ after one year.

Marriott Bonvoy Credit Card Application Rules

Marriott Bonvoy’s complicated application rules are still in play.  From the fine print, it looks like you can get the both Bevy and the Brilliant, other card restrictions still apply.

The rules are Bountiful are, however more restrictive than the Boundless or Bold.  The cardholder is not able to open a Bountiful if they currently have or had any of the following cards within the last 30 days, applied and were approved for any of the following cards within the last 90 days, or received a new card member bonus or upgrade bonus for any of the following cards within the last 24 month: Marriott Bonvoy® American Express® Card, Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express, Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card, Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express, Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card, Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card.  The Chase Marriott Bonvoy card rules still limit the cardholder to 24 months between sign-up bonuses.

Amex Transfer Bonuses

American Express has announced a slew of transfer bonuses through September:

  • Aer Lingus Avios: 25% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,250 Aer Lingus Avios
  • Aeromexico: 20% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,920 Aeromexico miles
  • Air Canada Aeroplan: 15% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,150 Aeroplan points
  • Air France/KLM Flying Blue: 25% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,250 Flying Blue miles
  • Avianca LifeMiles: 15% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,150 LifeMiles
  • British Airways Avios: 25% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,250 Avios
  • Choice Privileges: 25% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,250 points
  • Hawaiian Airlines: 20% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,200 HawaiianMiles
  • Hilton Honors: 30% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 2,600 Hilton Honors Points
  • Marriot Bonvoy: 20% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,200 Bonvoy points
  • Qantas: 20% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,200 Qantas points
  • Virgin Atlantic: 30% bonus; 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,300 Flying lub points

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