Redeeming Marriott points for a Hotel + Air package can be a great way to save money on a week-long vacation!
And that’s why Million Mile Secrets reader, Ann, emailed:
I have enough Marriott points to book a Hotel + Air package. But I’m wondering which airline miles I should get. We want to travel to Costa Rica next spring. Is United Airlines or British Airways the better way to go in terms of redemption options?
There are 5 packages you can choose from. So you have several options to select which airline miles you get and how many.
For example, you can redeem 270,000 Marriott points for a 7-night certificate at a Category 1 to 5 Marriott hotel plus 132,000 United Airlines miles. But redeeming the same number of Marriott points gets you the 7-night certificate and only 60,000 JetBlue points.
I’ll explain how folks like reader Ann can decide which airline miles to collect as part of the Marriott Hotel + Air package.
Get Miles With Just About ANY Airline When You Book a Marriott Hotel + Air Package
Link: Marriott Hotel + Air Packages (Login Required)
Folks like Ann can select which airline miles to collect when redeeming Marriott points for a Hotel + Air package.
You also choose the category of hotel you’d like to stay. The higher the category, the more points you’ll redeem for the package.
So you’ll always get a 7-night certificate with the package. But the number of miles you get depends on which airline you select and how many Marriott points you redeem.
Keep in mind, when you book the Hotel + Air package, you do NOT have to pick the hotel at the same time. You’ll get a certificate for the hotel category you choose that’s valid for 1 year. And you can also upgrade to a higher category hotel in the future if you use more Marriott points.
Note: To book a Hotel + Air package, you must call Marriott at 888-236-2427.
Earn Airline Miles Based on Your Travel Destination
Choosing the best airline miles to collect when booking a Hotel + Air package depends on which airport you’re flying from and your destination.
I recommend using Google Flights as a quick way to see which airline fly between your home airport and desired travel destination. Just enter your departure city and where you want to go.
To achieve her goal of traveling to Costa Rica, reader Ann might go with United Airlines as her airline selection. Because they’re the only airline with non-stop flights from Newark to Costa Rica. And low-level round-trip Saver award tickets for this route start at 35,000 United Airlines miles per person.
United Airlines miles are also useful because:
- They have more airline partners than any other US airline
- They never add fuel surcharges to award tickets
- It’s easy to search for award flights
That said, I recommend searching the airline’s award calendar BEFORE you select it for your Hotel + Air package. Because the price of an award ticket and availability can vary based on your travel dates.
Another perk of choosing United Airlines is you get 10% more miles when you redeem Marriott points for a Hotel + Air package. For example, you can redeem 270,000 Marriott points for a 7-night certificate and 132,000 United Airlines miles. Or you can transfer 90,000 Starwood points to Marriott and book the same package because of the 1:3 transfer ratio.
While it might not be the best choice for Ann’s itinerary, earning Alaska Airlines miles with the Hotel + Air package can be a great pick. Because you can redeem Alaska Airlines miles for award flights on these partner airlines:
- American Airlines
- Air France
- British Airways
- Cathay Pacific
- Fiji Airways
- Hainan Airlines
- Korean Air
- Ravn Alaska
Check out my post with ideas on how you can use Alaska Airlines miles!
Note: You’re NOT required to redeem the miles from the Hotel + Air package at the same time you use the 7-night certificate.
When you redeem Marriott points for a Hotel + Air package, you can choose to earn miles with just about ANY airline.
But the amount of miles you get will vary based on the airline partner you choose. For example, you can redeem 270,000 Marriott points for a 7-night certificate at a Category 1 to 5 Marriott hotel plus 132,000 United Airlines miles. But redeeming the same number of Marriott points gets you the 7-night certificate and only 85,000 Singapore Airlines miles.
The best airline partner to choose with the package will depend on where you’re traveling. In general, United Airlines is a good pick because you get 10% more miles when booking a Hotel + Air package. And they have more airline partners than any other US airline.
Thanks for the question, Ann. And enjoy your trip to Costa Rica!