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Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card — Full Review [2024]

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Jarrod West
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Jarrod West

Senior Content Contributor

440 Published Articles 1 Edited Article

Countries Visited: 21U.S. States Visited: 24

Boasting a portfolio of over 20 cards, Jarrod has been an expert in the points and miles space for over 6 years. He earns and redeems over 1 million points per year and his work has been featured in o...
Edited by: Kellie Jez
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Kellie Jez

Director of Operations & Compliance

1 Published Article 1171 Edited Articles

Countries Visited: 10U.S. States Visited: 20

Kellie’s professional experience has led her to a deep passion for compliance, data reporting, and process improvement. Kellie’s learned the ins and outs of the points and miles world and leads UP’s c...

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Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card
Terms Apply / Rates & Fees

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.
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  • 185,000 bonus points

  • $650

  • 20.99%-29.99% Variable

  • Good to Excellent (670-850)

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

A premium card for Marriott fans who want perks like an annual statement credit and Free Night Award, plus a fast track to Marriott elite status.

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.
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Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card is a premium card designed with road warriors and Marriott Bonvoy loyalists in mind.

So is the card a worthwhile addition to your wallet?

Card Snapshot

Welcome Bonus & Info

  • Earn 185,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • $300 Brilliant Dining Credit: Each calendar year, get up to $300 (up to $25 per month) in statement credits for eligible purchases made on the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card at restaurants worldwide.
  • With Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status, you can receive room upgrades, including enhanced views or suites, when available at select properties and booked with a Qualifying Rate.
  • Earn 6X Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. 3X points at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines. 2X points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Free Night Award: Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 85,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Each calendar year after spending $60,000 on eligible purchases on your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, you will be eligible to select a Brilliant Earned Choice Award benefit. You can only earn one Earned Choice Award per calendar year. See https://www.choice-benefit.marriott.com/brilliant for Award options.
  • $100 Marriott Bonvoy Property Credit: Enjoy your stay. Receive up to a $100 property credit for qualifying charges at The Ritz-Carlton® or St. Regis® when you book direct using a special rate for a two-night minimum stay using your Card.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®: Receive either a statement credit every 4 years after you apply for Global Entry ($100) or a statement credit every 4.5 years after you apply for a five-year membership for TSA PreCheck® (up to $85 through a TSA PreCheck official enrollment provider) and pay the application fee with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Each calendar year with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card you can receive 25 Elite Night Credits toward the next level of Marriott Bonvoy® Elite status. Limitations apply per Marriott Bonvoy member account. Benefit is not exclusive to Cards offered by American Express. Terms apply.
  • Enroll in Priority Pass™ Select, which offers unlimited airport lounge visits to over 1,200 lounges in over 130 countries, regardless of which carrier or class you are flying. This allows you to relax before or between flights. You can enjoy snacks, drinks, and internet access in a quiet, comfortable location.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on international purchases.
  • With Cell Phone Protection, you can be reimbursed, the lesser of, your repair or replacement costs following damage, such as a cracked screen, or theft for a maximum of $800 per claim when your cell phone line is listed on a wireless bill and the prior month's wireless bill was paid by an Eligible Card Account. A $50 deductible will apply to each approved claim with a limit of 2 approved claims per 12-month period. Additional terms and conditions apply. Coverage is provided by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.
  • $650 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.

Rewards Center

Marriott Bonvoy

Customer Service Number

800-528-4800

Pros

  • 6x points per $1 at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy program
  • 3x points per $1 on flights booked directly with airlines and restaurants worldwide
  • 2x points per $1 on all other purchases
  • 25 Elite Night Credits each year
  • Priority Pass Select membership upon enrollment
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee statement credit
  • Annual Free Night Award after card renewal
  • Complimentary Platinum Elite status

Cons

Great Card If

  • You’re a staunch Marriott Bonvoy loyalist
  • You see value in the Free Night Award and up to $300 dining statement credit
  • You want a fast track to higher-tier Marriott elite status levels

Don’t Get If

  • You don’t stay in Marriott hotels often
  • You prefer a card with a lower or no annual fee

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card — Is It Worth It?

Plus, frequent travelers will love that the card gives you access to over 1,200 airport lounges worldwide thanks to Priority Pass.

Put simply, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card is well worth it for frequent travelers who are dedicated Marriott Bonvoy loyalists and can make great use of each of the card’s perks and benefits.

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card — Top Benefits

Up to $300 Statement Credit for Restaurant Purchases

Each calendar year, get up to $300 in statement credits per calendar year (up to $25 per month) for eligible purchases at restaurants worldwide.

Anniversary Free Night Certificate 

Another excellent perk that helps offset the card’s annual fee is the annual Free Night Award which gets you a reward night at any hotel participating in Marriott Bonvoy (up to 85,000 points).

With Marriott now utilizing dynamic award pricing, this Free Night Award could get you a reward night in a Category 8 property, assuming that it is not a peak night.

You can often find Marriott Category 8 hotels priced anywhere from $500 to $1,000 per night, so the annual reward night will certainly bring excellent value to cardholders.

25 Elite Night Credits

Need an extra boost towards reaching the next elite status tier? The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card jumpstarts you with 25 elite night credits at the start of each year.

Don’t confuse these elite night credits with Free Night Award, as you cannot redeem these credits for award nights — they exclusively count towards your status.

This can still be hugely beneficial, as the next status tier, Titanium Elite, requires 75 nights a year. This means that the 25 elite night credits you earn from the card can drop the actual nights needed to 50 nights to earn Titanium Elite status.

$100 Luxury Property Credit

Your card offers you up to $100 property credit when you book a 2-night minimum stay at a Ritz-Carlton or St. Regis hotel directly through Marriott using the rate titled “$100 Property Credit, Luxury Credit Card Rate.”

Since this is a specific rate, you can receive this $100 credit on every booking you make with these 2 hotel brands. The property credit can be used on qualifying purchases at the hotel, like spa services or dining in the on-site restaurant.

Priority Pass Select Membership

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant cardholders have the option to enroll in a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership that gets you (and 2 traveling companions) into over 1,200+ airport lounges in over 130 countries.

How To Earn and Redeem Your Marriott Bonvoy Points

While the most straightforward way to earn Marriott Bonvoy points is through Marriott hotel stays and using your card for purchases, there are actually many other great ways to earn Marriott Bonvoy points as well!

Of course, earning points is just one-half of the equation, you’ll also want to know how to redeem them for maximum value. Fortunately, when it comes to Marriott Bonvoy points, you can both redeem them for Marriott hotel stays, and you can redeem your Marriott Bonvoy points for flights also.

Redeeming hotel points for flights? How does that work? Well, similar to other transferable point currencies, you can transfer your Marriott Bonvoy points to over 40 different airline transfer partners!

Alternatives to the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

A top player in the high-end premium travel credit card space that earns 3x points on travel and dining while offering top luxury perks.

Learn More(at Chase's secure site)

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

A top player in the high-end premium travel credit card space that earns 3x points on travel and dining while offering top luxury perks.
Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Travel.
60,000 points
$1,200
$550
22.49%-29.49% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Excellent (740-850)

If you’re looking for an all-around excellent travel rewards card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® is one of the best options out there.

The card combines elite travel benefits and perks like airport lounge access, with excellent point earning and redemption options.  Plus it offers top-notch travel insurance protections to keep you covered whether you’re at home or on the road.

Don’t forget the $300 annual travel credit which really helps to reduce the annual fee!

Pros

  • 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase TravelSM immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually
  • 10x points on Lyft purchases March 31, 2025
  • 10x points on Peloton equipment and accessory purchases over $250 through March 31, 2025
  • 5x points on airfare booked through Chase TravelSM
  • 3x points on all other travel and dining purchases; 1x point on all other purchases
  • $300 annual travel credit
  • Priority Pass airport lounge access
  • TSA PreCheck, Global Entry, or NEXUS credit
  • Access to Chase Luxury Hotel and Resort Collection
  • Rental car elite status with National and Avis

Cons

  • $550 annual fee
  • Does not offer any sort of hotel elite status
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Travel℠ immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Travel℠. For example, 60,000 points are worth $900 toward travel.
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more
  • Member FDIC

Financial Snapshot

  • APR: 22.49%-29.49% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

Card Categories

Rewards Center

Chase Ultimate Rewards

If you’re looking for a more well-rounded premium travel credit card then the Chase Sapphire Reserve card could be a perfect option.

The card earns 3x points per $1 spent on all travel and dining purchases, with the travel definition being extended to include airfare, hotels, Airbnb, etc., along with 10x points per $1 on Lyft rides.

While the card does charge a $550 annual fee, when you consider the up to $300 travel credit, Priority Pass membership, travel insurance protections, Lyft Pink membership, and DoorDash credits, it certainly makes for a compelling option.

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire CardTerms Apply / Rates & Fees

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

Automatic Hilton Diamond status, an annual free night, and a travel and resort credit make this the perfect card for those who stay in Hilton hotels.

All information about Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card has been collected independently by Upgraded Points.

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

Automatic Hilton Diamond status, an annual free night, and a travel and resort credit make this the perfect card for those who stay in Hilton hotels.
Earn 180,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Aspire card from American Express after you use your new card to make $6,000 in eligible purchases within the first 6 months of card membership.
180,000 points
$900
$550
20.74% - 29.74% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The information regarding the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.


Paying hundreds of dollars for an annual fee on a co-branded hotel card might seem ridiculous, but you should know that the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card is much more than your run-of-the-mill hotel credit card.

The Hilton Aspire card is not only a phenomenal card for Hilton Honors loyalists, but even those who visit Hilton hotels just a few times a year can still get excellent value out of all the benefits that are packed into this card.

So let’s have a look at what makes the card so valuable to travelers.

Pros

  • 14x points per $1 on Hilton purchases
  • 7x points per $1 on select travel and at U.S. restaurants
  • 3x points per $1 on all other purchases
  • Complimentary Hilton Diamond status
  • Up to $400 in annual statement credits on purchases with participating Hilton Resorts (up to $200 in statement credits semi-annually)
  • Up to $200 back annually on eligible flight purchases (up to $50 in statement credits each quarter)
  • 1 Free Weekend Night Award each cardmember anniversary
  • $100 credit at Waldorf Astoria and Conrad properties

Cons

  • High annual fee of $550
  • Earn 180,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Aspire card from American Express after you use your new card to make $6,000 in eligible purchases within the first 6 months of card membership. Plus, enjoy a free Weekend Night Reward within your first year and every year after renewal.
  • Earn 14x Hilton Honors Bonus Points when you make eligible purchases on your card at participating hotels or resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
  • Earn 7x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for eligible purchases: on flights booked directly with airlines or amextravel.com, on car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies, and at U.S. restaurants.
  • Earn 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases on your card.
  • Enjoy up to $400 in Hilton Resort Credits (up to $200 in statement credits semi-annually) on your card each anniversary year when you stay at participating resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
  • Enjoy complimentary Diamond status.
  • $550 annual fee.

Financial Snapshot

  • APR: 20.74% - 29.74% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

Card Categories

The only other premium hotel credit card on the market is the Hilton Aspire card — and it packs quite a punch.

The card earns 14x points per $1 on Hilton stays, includes top-tier Diamond status, a $400 Hilton resort credit, a $200 airline fee credit, and an annual free weekend night award usable at any Hilton hotel.

If you’re not committed to Marriott and like the idea of having top-tier elite status with Hilton, then the Hilton Aspire card might be perfect for you.


We’ve also compared the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card to these other popular cards:

The information regarding the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

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

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card worth it?

The card might very well be worth it for you if you frequently stay at Marriott hotels and can take advantage of the annual Free Night Award and annual dining credit.

Does the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card charge foreign transaction fees?

The card does not charge foreign transaction fees.

Which Marriott Bonvoy card is best?

Generally speaking, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card offers more perks and higher elite status than any other Marriott card. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best option for you.

Be sure to compare and contrast which benefits will be most useful for you and whether they are worth their respective annual fees.

Can you transfer Marriott Bonvoy points?

Yes, Marriott Bonvoy has over 40 airline transfer partners that you can transfer your points to.

Do Marriott Bonvoy points expire?

Your Marriott Bonvoy points will expire after 24 months of no account activity. To keep them active you just need to have a qualifying activity, like earning or redeeming points.

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About Jarrod West

Boasting a portfolio of over 20 cards, Jarrod has been an expert in the points and miles space for over 6 years. He earns and redeems over 1 million points per year and his work has been featured in outlets like The New York Times.

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