I love a good clickbait title now and again, don’t you?
Anyway, on Tuesday I published a post on collecting Marriott points in a hurry with the purpose of redeeming them on a fancy Fiji resort I said that I was short 3,000 points and that I was planning on buying 1,000 SPG points for $35 and transferring them to Marriott on 1:3 basis.
Well, my reader S. has reached out to me and said that she has a few thousand Marriott points which will likely expire soon. She insisted that I let her transfer them to me instead. I tried to say No, but she was determined. I told her I would at least reimburse her the $10 transfer fee and send her a small gift card for her trouble, but she wouldn’t even accept that.
First, let me say that I absolutely didn’t write the post hoping that one of my readers would gift me their valuable points. I simply record miles and points related events, as they unfold in my life. There is no hidden agenda. But I was touched by this reader’s kindness, and in the end gave her my Marriott number so she could proceed with the transfer. I should note that I trust this person based on our previous communications, I don’t just give out my account numbers to random individuals.
An hour later I got a message saying that the Marriott rep told her I would have to be on the phone at the same time in order to perform the transfer. Huh? That didn’t sound right. If I was the one transferring the points, that would be understandable. I suggested that the reader tries again. She emailed me and said that the second rep told her the same thing. What the what? All of these security measures for 3,000 points?
I felt really bad about the nuisance factor and all the time this poor person had to spend on the transfer. But she was very nice and said she absolutely wants me to have the points. OK, we decided to arrange a joint phone call the following day. Since she lives in California, we had to factor in the time difference. I honestly couldn’t believe that my reader was willing to put up with this nonsense, but she said that the blog’s content has helped her tremendously, and this was her way to pay back.
So, the following day she did call me at the arranged time and tied me in on the phone call. Except, it wasn’t necessary. I remained silent during the entire conversation. This time the Marriott rep didn’t have any issues with transferring the points to my account without me giving verbal consent. And he didn’t even charge her $10 transfer fee. Keep in mind that spouses can combine Marriott points for free when making a redemption. Gold and Platinum Elite members can transfer for free to anyone as well (50,000 points yearly limit applies). But apparently, the fee isn’t enforced regardless.
After the Marriott rep hung up, me and the reader chatted for few minutes and laughed about the ridiculousness of the whole thing. Where was this guy during the first phone call? So, I don’t know if this is truly a new policy or just some eager reps getting carried away. But it’s something to keep in mind when offering Marriott points to people who you don’t know personally.
I do feel bad about the fact that this transfer was needlessly complicated. But I am extremely grateful to this reader. Even though paying $35 certainly wouldn’t kill me, it really is the thought that counts.
Leana is the founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.