Maximizing Amex Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 Marriott Statement Credit in 2021

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Maximizing Amex Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 Marriott Statement Credit in 2021

UPDATES: 
  • You can also use Marriott $300 statement credit indirectly towards Shop Marriott. See post below
  • Amex has added extra wordings on cancelled/returned credits. So please proceed carefully as Amex may be clawing back those cancelled/returned credits in the future. See here.

American Express Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card offers $300 statement credit each year during card membership for eligible purchases at worldwide Marriott Bonvoy hotels and resorts. The Brilliant card is one of the premium travel cards that has a high annual fee of $450, and being able to use and maximize its $300 statement credit benefit will help justifying that annual fee. 

The good news is, Amex makes this $300 Marriott statement credit benefit easier to use compared to the $250 Hilton resort credit that comes with the Amex Hilton Aspire card

Without further ado, let's take a look at some creative ways to use the $300 Marriott Bonvoy statement credit.

Protea Hotel Cape Town Waterfront Breakwater Lodge

Table of Contents  [show/hide]

    Use the Credit For Staying at a Marriott Bonvoy Property

    This is the most obvious and straight forward way to use $300 Marriott Bonvoy statement credit. That's exactly what the benefit was designed for. You stay at a Marriott property and use your Amex Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card to pay for room rate, dining, spa and any incidental charges at participating worldwide Marriott Bonvoy hotels, resorts and timeshare properties. You just have to make sure all expenses are charged to the room and paid for with your American Express Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card at the time of checkout for the benefit to apply. American Express then will automatically issue a $300 statement credit into your credit card's account. 
     

    Use the Credit For Night Out at a Marriott Bonvoy Property

    Staying with Marriott Bonvoy property is not required. You can have a night out in town where your local Marriott Bonvoy property has a restaurant or a bar. Any Marriott Bonvoy brands such as Courtyard, Fairfield Inn, Sheraton, Westin, etc. will do. 

    When we don't travel, we would use the $300 statement credit this way once or twice by having a date night out to eat and drink at a local Courtyard property. Our food and drinks expenses were reimbursed by Amex and applied towards the $300 Marriott Bonvoy statement credit. You just need to make sure to pay with your American Express Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card for this benefit to apply. 

    Use the Credit For Reservation Deposit

    [DEAD] The following trick is no longer working. After you cancel your reservation, the deposit goes back to your Brilliant card and Amex also takes back the statement credit that is part of the $300 Marriott Bonvoy statement credit. 

    Some Marriott Bonvoy properties require a credit card deposit when you make a reservation. One of the properties that we are aware of is the Le Meridien Bora Bora Resort. We made a points and cash reservation there that came with a flexible cancellation policy. Right after our reservation was made, our credit card got charged by the property. We contacted the property right away and they responded below:

    Thank you for your email, I checked with our reservation department regarding this charge. They confirmed that according to your booking policy, this amount is for the deposit regarding your booking by cash and points. If you will not using this deposit during your stay, we would like to confirm that we will refund this amount on your bank account after your departure.

    So what this means is that you can make a refundable reservation with one of these Marriott Bonvoy properties that requires a reservation deposit with your American Express Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card, and your credit card will be charged right away for the deposit. This will trigger the $300 Marriott statement credit because it's charged directly by a participating Marriott Bonvoy property. After awhile, if your trip is interrupted, you can cancel the reservation during the permitted time and get the deposit refunded to your Amex Brilliant credit card. 

    What Happens to Refunded Credit?

    [More Update May 2021]: American Express system now automatically takes the statement credit back for any credit that they issued to you as part of the Brilliant card's $300 Marriott statement credit for any deposit credit that is refunded by the Marriott Bonvoy property to the card due to the cancellation. 

    [Warning Update May 2020]: It appears that American Express has added additional wordings to Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 statement credit terms. So please proceed carefully with this trick at your own risk as Amex may be clawing back cancelled/returned credits in the future. You have a whole full membership anniversary year to use this $300 credit, so go travel and enjoy the credits. But if you must use this trick, use it as the last resort. This is what Amex says:
    Note that statement credit(s) received during the reward year may be reversed if the eligible purchase is returned/cancelled, or if you engage in abuse or misuse in connection with the benefit (for example, if you do not maintain an eligible Card Account for the duration of the reward year).
     
    We put this trick to test and haven't had any issues. However, don't do it too often to a point that you are abusing this trick. Obviously, if you have a legit upcoming stay, chances are you will be likely spending money at the hotel for parking, food, drinks, room rate and taxes, etc. and these charges all qualify for the $300 Marriott Bonvoy statement credit benefit. Consider doing this only if it were your last resort because this benefit is one of those things that you use it or lose it.

    Use the Credit For Marriott Gift Card

    There are data points from points and miles community that purchasing Marriott gift card does trigger the $300 Marriott Bonvoy statement credit's reimbursement. This is in fact true when you can find a local Marriott Bonvoy hotel that can sell Marriott gift card to you because the payment will be processed directly by the property. However, the challenging part with this is being able to find a local Marriott property that actually sells gift card. 

    The best way to buy Marriott gift card and have it reimbursed towards $300 statement credit can actually be done online. However, you must buy it directly from Marriott website here. This is the only site that we tested and know works. 

    We bought a $300 Marriott e-gift card and Amex automatically issued us $300 statement credit. The transaction even earns 6x points per 1 dollar spent. So apparently, the charge was coded as if the payment was processed by a Marriott Bonvoy property. See screenshot below.

    Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 Statement Credit Gift Card
    Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 Statement Credit Gift Card

    ** Please note that, while this online gift card purchase triggers Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 statement credit, it does not work with Amex offer that gives you statement credit back if you spend x amount at Marriott Bonvoy. So unfortunately you cannot stack the offers here. 

    Use the Credit For Shop Marriott

    If you enjoy a pillow, bedsheet, comforter, or robe, etc. at a Marriott Bonvoy property, you can purchase those items online. You can find many bedding items sold by many of your favorite Marriott Bonvoy brands online such as the Ritz-Carlton, the Westin, JW Marriott, St. Regis to name a few. 

    You can use the $300 Marriott statement credit to purchase hotel bedding when you pay with a Marriott gift card. Here's how you do it:

    Maximizing Amex Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 Marriott Statement Credit
    Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 Statement Credit Shop Marriott


    Maximize the Credit With Amex Offer

    You can maximize your $300 Marriott Bonvoy statement credit savings even further with the Amex offer. You can stack the above mentioned methods with Amex offer.

    Here's how it works. Check your Amex Offers from time to time to see if your American Express Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card is targeted for any statement credits at a participating Marriott Bonvoy brand. For example, my Brilliant card was targeted for spending at Marriott brand property: Spend $300 or more, get $60 back

    It's worth noting that each Amex offer has terms and conditions that can be specific about which Marriott Bonvoy brand or property is eligible, so be sure to check the fine print.

    Please also note that, while online Marriott gift card's and e-gift card's purchase triggers Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant $300 statement credit, it does not work with Amex offer that gives you statement credit back if you spend x amount at Marriott Bonvoy. So unfortunately you cannot stack the offers here. 

    There you have it! I hope you enjoy learning these ways to take full advantage of your American Express Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card's benefit and make sure to subscribe to our blog posts below to learn more tips & tricks on points traveling!
    If you like this post, please share it!

    PL

    Posted by: PL

    Hello there! People call me PL and I am a points blogger. Obsessed with using points and miles to elevate travel experiences to explore the world. Enjoy finer things in life and good food. I have a day job, this points blog is mainly my hobby and my contribution back to the points community. If you enjoy reading this post, please help me share it! If you enjoy what you read here, please make sure you subscribe or follow this blog on social media so that you will be notified when there's a new blog's post. I thank you for reading this blog. Your support means a lot to me and it is what makes this blog's work worthwhile. If I can be of any help, you can contact me: thepointslife at gmail dot com

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    2 Comments

    Unknown said…
    Is check-in at hotel required for using the 300 USD credit? Any proof that a check in is not required. Their terms and conditions reads that all expenses like spa, dining, etc. must be billed to the room upon check-out...
    PL said…
    Hi, why would you want to book a stay and not check-in/use $300? If you are gifting the room to someone or if you cannot personally check in, you can add a second guest to your reservation that can check in for you, but be sure to contact the property to arrange the payment using your Brilliant card first. If you can't be there at all, you can read about reservation deposit in this article under "Use the Credit For Reservation Deposit" so the guest that is staying in the room is not being charged.