Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card review: A bonus of 5 free nights, anniversary free night certificate, and new benefits for a reasonable annual fee

1 week ago 13

Updated

2022-06-23T20:29:18Z

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Regular APR

16.74% to 23.74% Variable

Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent

Regular APR

16.74% to 23.74% Variable

Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent

Pros

  • Annual free night reward for hotels that cost up to 35,000 points can be worth more than annual fee

Cons

  • The only lucrative bonus category is participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels
  • Upgrading to Gold status requires spending $35,000 on the card in an account year,
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More Information

  • For a Limited Time Only! Earn 5 Free Nights (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after qualifying purchases.
  • Our Best Free Night Offer!
  • New Benefit! Earn 3X Bonvoy points per $1 on the first $6,000 spent in combined purchases each year on grocery stores, gas stations, and dining.
  • New Benefit! Earn 1 Elite Night Credit towards Elite Status for every $5,000 you spend.
  • 1 Free Night Award (valued up to 35,000 points) every year after account anniversary.
  • Earn up to 17X total Bonvoy points per $1 spent at over 7,000 hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy® with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Card.
  • 2X Bonvoy points for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • Receive 15 Elite Night Credits annually, automatic Silver Elite Status each account anniversary year, and path to Gold Status when you spend $35,000 on purchases each calendar year.

Review: Is the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless the best credit card for you?

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card is an excellent option if you want to earn Marriott Bonvoy points on your everyday purchases without paying a premium-level annual fee. (The premium Marriott credit card is the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, which offers an annual statement credit and comes with a $450 annual fee (See Rates).)

It doesn't hurt that the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card is currently offering a new welcome bonus of 5 free nights (each worth up to 50,000 points) after spending $5,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. That makes the bonus worth up to 250,000 points, which are worth around $1,750 based on Insider's valuations.

The card's value doesn't stop at the welcome offer, though. Considering that award nights at Marriott Bonvoy properties start at just 5,000 points (though prices that low are few and far between), the points you'll earn by using this card on a regular basis can help you book more award stays down the line.

One of the card's best perks is the annual free night certificate cardholders receive every card anniversary. It's valid at Marriott hotels that cost up to 35,000 points per night, and if you use it at pricier hotels, it's easy to get a value that far exceeds the annual fee. 

You also get automatic Silver elite status in the Marriott Bonvoy program, along with no foreign transaction fees and a broad selection of travel insurance benefits.

While you should consider all the hotel credit cards available today before you choose one, also remember that you can earn points that transfer to the Marriott Bonvoy program with travel rewards cards that earn transferable points, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or The Platinum Card® from American Express .

Both Amex Membership Rewards points and Chase Ultimate Rewards® points transfer to Marriott Bonvoy at a 1:1 ratio, so you have a lot of options.

We're focused here on the rewards and perks that come with each card. These cards won't be worth it if you're paying interest or late fees. When using a credit card, it's important to pay your balance in full each month, make payments on time, and only spend what you can afford to pay.

How to earn points with the Chase Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card offers a straightforward earning structure, with bonus rewards in several great categories. Cardholders earn:

  • 6 points per dollar at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels (this is in addition to up to 10x points for being a Marriott Bonvoy member and up to 1x point for having Silver elite status from the card)
  • 3 points per dollar on dining, gas, and groceries (on up to $6,000 in combined purchases each year)
  • 2 points per dollar on all other eligible purchases

How to redeem Marriott points 

Earning points in the Marriott Bonvoy program paves the way for free hotel stays at more than 7,000 participating properties worldwide. Rates start at just 5,000 points per night, while a mid-tier property will set you back around 35,000 points per night.

At luxury Marriott hotels, awards can cost up to 120,000 points per night.

Marriott Bonvoy has shifted to dynamic award pricing and eliminated its fixed award charts. That means prices can vary dramatically, presumably based on things like travel season and cash price of the room.

Also, keep in mind that you get a fifth night free when you use points to book four consecutive free nights. Cash and points options are also available, and they let you book a night at a discount with a cash copay.

Another benefit of the Marriott Bonvoy program is that you don't have to redeem points for free nights. There are other options available, including transferring points to over 40 airline partners, redeeming for gift cards and rental cars, and more. You can even redeem Marriott Bonvoy points for experiences like concerts and events.

Benefits and features

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card comes with a host of benefits and travel perks.

Anniversary free night award

Each year after your account anniversary, you'll earn a free night award that you can redeem at participating Marriott Bonvoy properties that cost up to 35,000 points. Depending on how you use it each year, you can get a value that can easily cancel out the card's annual fee.

Automatic Marriott Bonvoy Silver elite status

You'll receive automatic Silver elite status in the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program just for being a cardholder. Silver elite status comes with 10% bonus points on paid stays, priority late checkout, and free Wi-Fi. 

The points bonus is probably the most valuable benefit here. If you pay with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card, you'll earn up to 17 points per dollar spent at Marriott Bonvoy properties — 10 points as a loyalty member, 1 additional point as a Silver Elite member, and 6 points for paying with your credit card.

The card also offers a path to Marriott Bonvoy Gold elite status after you spend $35,000 or more on the card in a year.

15 elite night credits toward status each calendar year

Each cardmember year, you'll get 15 elite night credits toward Marriott Bonvoy elite status

These credits count toward the next level of elite status, whether you're working toward Marriott Bonvoy Gold (by staying 25 qualifying nights in a year) or you've already qualified through Gold and are working toward Platinum (which requires 50 qualifying nights in a year). 

Elite night credits for spending

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card recently added the ability to earn elite night credits for spending. Cardholders will earn one elite night credit for every $5,000 they spend on the card, and there's no limit to the number of elite nights you can earn. 

Lost luggage reimbursement

When you pay for your fare with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card and the carrier damages or loses your bags, you and your immediate family members could be covered for up to $3,000 per passenger. 

Baggage delay insurance

If your bags are delayed for six hours or more, you could be reimbursed for essential purchases (like clothing and toiletries) up to $100 per day for up to five days.

Trip delay insurance

If you paid for your ticket with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card and your trip is delayed overnight or by more than 12 hours, you and your immediate family can get reimbursed for up to $500 per passenger for meals and accommodations.

Purchase protection

If an eligible item you've bought with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card is damaged or stolen within 120 days of purchase, you could be eligible for up to $500 in reimbursement per claim, and up to $50,000 per account.

Visa Signature concierge

The Visa Signature concierge can help you arrange things like hard-to-get restaurant reservations or theater tickets. It doesn't cost anything to use the service, but any third-party costs are your responsibility.

Regular APR

16.74% to 23.74% Variable

Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent

Regular APR

16.74% to 23.74% Variable

Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent

Pros

  • Annual free night reward for hotels that cost up to 35,000 points can be worth more than annual fee

Cons

  • The only lucrative bonus category is participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels
  • Upgrading to Gold status requires spending $35,000 on the card in an account year,
Read Our Review Read Our Review A looong arrow, pointing right

More Information

  • For a Limited Time Only! Earn 5 Free Nights (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after qualifying purchases.
  • Our Best Free Night Offer!
  • New Benefit! Earn 3X Bonvoy points per $1 on the first $6,000 spent in combined purchases each year on grocery stores, gas stations, and dining.
  • New Benefit! Earn 1 Elite Night Credit towards Elite Status for every $5,000 you spend.
  • 1 Free Night Award (valued up to 35,000 points) every year after account anniversary.
  • Earn up to 17X total Bonvoy points per $1 spent at over 7,000 hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy® with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Card.
  • 2X Bonvoy points for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • Receive 15 Elite Night Credits annually, automatic Silver Elite Status each account anniversary year, and path to Gold Status when you spend $35,000 on purchases each calendar year.

Fees and costs

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless has an annual fee of $95, and no foreign transaction fees.

As long as you pay your bill in full each month, you can avoid other fees with this card. If you do carry a balance, there's an APR of 16.74% to 23.74% Variable. Avoid carrying a balance at all costs — it can damage your financial health by having a negative impact on your credit score, and you'll accrue interest charges quickly, which can only make matters worse.

Other Marriott Bonvoy Boundless fees include:

  • Balance transfer fee: 5% of the transfer, with a $5 minimum
  • Cash-advance fee: 5% of the cash advance, with a $10 minimum

If you need a card that offers a period of interest-free financing, check out our guide to the best credit cards with 0% intro APR offers.

Comparison: Marriott Bonvoy Boundless vs other Marriott cards

*Bonus points at Marriott hotels are in addition to the points members would normally earn from a stay

***the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card offers an annual free night award each year after your account anniversary for participating Marriott Bonvoy properties that cost up to 35,000 points

****the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card offers an annual free night award every year after your card renewal month for participating Marriott Bonvoy properties that cost up to 50,000 points

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless vs other hotel cards

*Bonus points at Marriott, Hilton, and IHG hotels are in addition to the points members would normally earn from a stay

***the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card offers an annual free night award each year after your account anniversary for participating Marriott Bonvoy properties that cost up to 35,000 points

*****the IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card offers an annual free night award each year after your account anniversary for participating IHG properties that cost up to 40,000 points

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Is the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card worth it?

If you stay at Marriott hotels, even occasionally, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless is worth considering. In fact, the free anniversary night can be worth much more than the card's $95 annual fee.

For frequent Marriott guests, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card could be a better bet, because it offers higher elite status, statement credits for spending at Marriott hotels, and a host of other useful perks.

What credit score do you need for the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless?

Most people who are approved for the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless have a good to excellent credit score, which means a FICO score of at least 670, or a VantageScore of at least 700.

Who is eligible for the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card?

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless is subject to the Chase 5/24 rule, which means if you've opened five or more credit cards from any bank (excluding some small-business cards), you won't be approved for the card.

You're also not eligible if you already have a Marriott Bonvoy Boundless, Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card, or Marriott Bonvoy® Premier credit card (not available to new applicants) open, or earned the welcome bonus from one in the past 24 months.

In addition, you won't be eligible for the welcome bonus offer on this card if any of the following apply to you:

  • You are a current cardmember, or were a previous cardmember within the last 30 days, of Marriott Bonvoy® American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express) 
  • You are a current or previous cardmember of either the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express) or Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card (also known as the Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card), and received a new cardmember bonus or upgrade bonus in the last 24 months
  • You applied and were approved for the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express) or Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card (also known as the Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card) within the last 90 days

Is the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless a Visa or Mastercard?

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless is a Visa Signature card.

Is the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card metal?

No. The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless is a plastic card.

Holly Johnson

Freelance Writer

Holly Johnson is a credit card expert, award-winning writer, and mother of two who is obsessed with frugality, budgeting, and travel. In addition to serving as contributing editor for The Simple Dollar and writing for publications such as Bankrate, U.S. News and World Report Travel, and Travel Pulse, Johnson owns Club Thrifty and is the co-author of "Zero Down Your Debt: Reclaim Your Income and Build a Life You’ll Love."

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Jasmin Baron is an editor at Insider, responsible for credit card coverage on Personal Finance Insider. She is also a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF).Before joining the Insider team, she was a senior editor at The Points Guy and Million Mile Secrets, covering credit cards, points and miles, and loyalty programs. Her expertise in maximizing travel rewards grew from over two decades of experience in the aviation industry, including 18 years working as a pilot and flight instructor in her native Canada.You can reach Jasmin at jbaron@insider.com. Learn more about how Personal Finance Insider chooses, rates, and covers financial products and services »

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Top Offers From Our Partners

For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, please click here.

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**Enrollment required.

Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. Trip Delay Insurance, Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance, and Cell Phone Protection Underwritten by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company. Global Assist Hotline Card Members are responsible for the costs charged by third-party service providers. If approved and coordinated by Premium Global Assist Hotline, emergency medical transportation assistance may be provided at no cost. In any other circumstance, Card Members may be responsible for the costs charged by third-party service providers. Extended Warranty, Purchase Protection, and Baggage Insurance Plan Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company. Car Rental Loss & Damage Insurance Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company. Car Rental Loss or Damage Coverage is offered through American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc.

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