Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card
Review the elite benefits of the Marriott Brilliant Card, calculate how many points you can earn based on your spend, and compare results against top cards.
The American Express Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card is Marriott's luxury credit card. The Brilliant Card was originally introduced in August 2018 as the SPG Luxury Card before the program fully switched from Marriott Rewards to Marriott Bonvoy February 2019. The Marriott Brilliant Card offers several travel benefits along with perks for those who stay at Marriott brand hotels. It's a great match for anyone devoted to their program.
The Marriott Brilliant Card features three bonus categories that earn additional Marriott Bonvoy Points. Those bonus categories are Marriott Properties, restaurants, and airfare booked directly with the airline. There is no limit to the amount of bonus points you can earn spending in these categories and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with the card. Below are the details of the bonus categories on the Marriott Brilliant Card.
6x Marriott Properties
The Marriott Brilliant Card will earn 6 Marriott Bonvoy Points per $1 spent on all participating Marriott hotels which include Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, and SPG brand hotels. Marriott Bonvoy Points have an average value of about 0.7 cents each meaning this is a 4.2% return per dollar. Besides the original (now unavailable) Marriott Card, all six updated cards earn the same rate of 6x points. So this bonus category alone will not be a big factor in choosing what card you wish to use for Marriott spending.
3x U.S. Restaurants
Using the Marriott Brilliant Card for restaurants in the U.S. will earn 3 Marriott Bonvoy Points per $1 spent. This bonus category offers a return of about 2.1% which is not too shabby, but both the Marriott Bonvoy Business Card (SPG Business Card) and Marriott Bonvoy Premier Plus Business Card offer 4x Marriott Bonvoy Points per dollar for a slightly better return of 2.8%. You also pick up 4x points on the AMEX Gold Card for both restaurants & grocery spending and transfer those earned points to your Marriott Bonvoy account.
3x Airfare Booked Directly
Booking airfare with the Marriott Brilliant Card will also net you a few extra Marriott Bonvoy Points. These purchases will earn 3 points per $1 spent for the same return of 2.1%. This is the highest earning out of all the Marriott Cards that feature the airfare bonus category, but more points can be earned with other programs and then transferred to your Marriott Account. For example you can earn Marriott Bonvoy Points by spending on the AMEX Platinum Card (5x Airfare), AMEX Gold Card (3x Airfare), or Chase Sapphire Reserve (3x Travel) and transfer the points over to the Marriott Program at a 1-to-1 ratio.
All non-bonus category purchases will earn 2 Marriott Bonvoy Points per $1 spent. This is sad return of 1.4% per $1 spent. I would not recommend putting any non-category spend across this card specifically. If you're still looking to earn Marriott Bonvoy Points for non-category charges, this about the best that can be done. The only other card that can generate a similar return is the Blue Business Plus Card, but it has the same earning of 2 points so it doesn't really make sense to use this card instead.
Perks and Benefits
The Marriott Brilliant Card is packed to the brim with benefits. Cardholders will receive a slew of benefits that could easily make paying the annual fee worth it. Below are the benefits of the Marriott Brilliant Card and a few details on them.
$300 Marriott Statement Credit
The Marriott Brilliant Card comes with $300 in statement credits for purchases at participating Marriott Hotels each card member year. If you frequently stay at Marriott properties, this perk will pay for itself since room charges also trigger the credit. This perk alone makes up for the majority of the Marriott Brilliant Card annual fee bringing the actual fee down to $150 a year.
Free Award Night
The annual free night reward for the Marriott Brilliant Card is awarded after card renewal and can be used on hotels that cost up to 50,000 Marriott Bonvoy Points. The Marriott Brilliant Card and the Ritz Carlton Card are the only two credit cards in the Marriott lineup that offer the 50k award night. The other available cards only offer an award night valued at 35k (25k for the original Marriott Premier Card). If you hold multiple Marriott credit cards, the free nights will stack allowing you earn a great deal of free nights.
Global Entry/TSA PreCheck
It would not be a luxury card without the standard $100 statement credit towards a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application. This Marriott Brilliant Card perk will be triggered once the card is used to pay for the application fee and it does not rely on whether or not the applicant is approved. Several luxury credit cards offer this perk including popular cards such as Chase Sapphire Reserve and The Platinum Card. Even some non-luxury cards offer this perk now such as the Capital One Venture Card.
$100 Property Credit
Marriott Brilliant cardholders will receive up to $100 in property credit for qualifying charges including room service and spa treatments when booking direct at The Ritz-Carlton or St. Regis using a special rate for 2-night minimum stays. You must use the Brilliant Card to pay for your stay to receive this credit.
Priority Pass Select Membership
The Marriott Brilliant Card provides Priority Pass Select Membership which allows unlimited lounge visits for the cardholder and up to two guests per visit.
Marriott Elite Status
15 Elite Nights
The Marriott Brilliant Card offers 15 elite night credits towards achieving status in the Marriott Bonvoy Program. Since this card already grants Gold status, that means Platinum Elite will only require 35 nights to obtain. These credits are applied every year as well. Do note that these credits do not stack with other Marriott cards and that 15 nights is all you can earn no matter how many of their co-branded credit cards you have.
Other Card Specific Benefits
The Marriott Brilliant Card offers free, unlimited Boingo Wi-Fi access so you can access internet hotspots worldwide and free in-room premium internet access at Marriott hotels
Standard AMEX Benefits
The AMEX Marriott Brilliant Card offers the standard American Express features that are present on all AMEX credit cards. Those are perks such as, but not limited to, AMEX Offers, access to AMEX presale tickets, return protection, roadside assistance, complimentary ShopRunner membership, extended warranty, purchase protection, and travel accident insurance.
Sign Up Bonus
The Marriott Bonvoy Credit Card sign up bonus ranges between 75,000 and 100,000 Marriott Bonvoy Points. The value of those points will heavily depend on how you redeem them. On average, the points can easily be redeemed for at least 0.7 cents each meaning this sign up has a range of $525 to $700. I've been able to find some redemptions of 1.1+ cents with relative ease in over populated Marriott locations (i.e. Atlanta). In terms of free nights, this can earn you as many as 10 nights at a Category 1 hotel and at least 1 night at the highest Category 8 hotel during off-peak season. You can use the Marriott Bonvoy Points Calculators on our program page to calculate point value based on hotel price.
Credit Card Fees
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|Foreign Transaction Fee|
The Marriott Brilliant Card annual fee is $450. This is the standard annual fee for most premium luxury cards. The Marriott Brilliant Card comes with an annual $300 in statement credits bringing the true fee down to $150 per year. Whether or not this card is worth $150 to you will depend on how much value you get out of the annual free night at a 50,000 point or less hotel and how valuable the other perks such as Marriott Gold Elite Status is worth to you.
Authorized User Fee
The Marriott Brilliant Card authorized user fee is $0. If you have family or friend that spend in the Marriott Brilliant Card's bonus categories, I would recommend adding them as authorized users. While additional users of the Marriott Brilliant Card they will not earn elite benefits like authorized users of the AMEX Platinum Cards, they will still be able to assist in building Marriott Bonvoy Points without adding additional fees to the card.
Foreign Transaction Fee
The Marriott Brilliant Card has a foreign transaction fee of 0%. This means you can spend freely overseas and earn Marriott Bonvoy Points without worrying about additional penalties and fees.
You can use this rewards calculator to calculate how many points, miles, or cash back you can earn based on your spend per category. This calculator will also give you the dollar value of the card based on rewards earned and how much each benefit is worth to you minus the fees. You can click the Compare A Card button to compare this card against another card in the same calculator.
All category spend entered in the primary card's column will carry over to all credit card pages on the site so you don't have to re-enter the same information over again.
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