At NerdWallet, we strive to help you make financial decisions with confidence. To do this, many or all of the products featured here are from our partners. However, this doesn’t influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.
Marriott offers a suite of credit cards for frequent and infrequent travelers alike. With over 7,000 properties worldwide, finding a Marriott property in your travels shouldn’t be a challenge. For a $0-annual-fee credit card, the Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card offers an attractive array of benefits for the Marriott loyalist. Below is a summary of the most valuable benefits of this card.
$0 annual fee
Since no one enjoys paying fees, having the ability to earn Marriott Bonvoy points without an annual fee is a determining factor for many. The Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card earns 3 Marriott points per $1 spent at Marriott properties, 2x points on all things travel (flights, trains, other hotels, etc.) and 1 point per $1 on everywhere else. Terms apply.
The welcome bonus
The Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card offers the following welcome bonus: Limited Time Offer! Earn 50,000 Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
This is enough points for at least two nights at a Category 2 hotel, or perhaps one night at Category 4 property like the AC Hotel Chicago Downtown.
Just by holding the Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card each year, you’ll earn 15 nights toward elite level status in the Marriott Bonvoy program. Since Silver elite status requires only 10 nights per year, this card is a surefire way to secure base level elite status with Marriott.
While Silver status won’t get you upgrades to the fanciest, swankiest suites in the property, you do get a 10% bonus on points, priority late checkout and access to a dedicated elite reservation line.
Marriott Gold status is achievable at 25 nights, so with this credit card and 10 more nights on your own, you’ve got a big jump-start toward your Gold Status.
Gold elite members qualify for room upgrades, a 25% bonus on all points earned, free premium internet and 2 p.m. late checkout. You’ll also receive a welcome gift of points at check-in.
No foreign transaction fees
Chances are you’re going to be traveling outside of the country at some point — why worry about paying a foreign transaction fee when you do? Those fees can range as high as 3% on some cards and add up quickly. With the Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card, you don’t have to worry about them. Terms apply.
Visa Signature benefits
Perhaps one of the most overlooked and undervalued benefits of the Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card comes courtesy of its Visa Signature moniker.
A suite of premium perks is available to all Visa Signature cardholders, not just those affiliated with Marriott or Chase. There are so many benefits and they are constantly changing, but we’ll highlight a few of our favorites here — all included with your card membership at no additional cost to you. Terms apply.
Sonoma Wine Country Benefits
If you’re a fan of wine, then Sonoma County should be on your list. As a Visa Signature cardholder, you are entitled to exclusive benefits at over 50 Sonoma County wineries. They include the following:
- Purchase 1 standard tasting using a Visa Signature or Visa Infinite card and receive 1 complimentary tasting of equal or lesser value.
- Preferred pricing on non-wine purchases over $50, where applicable.
- Discounts on wine purchased the same day in the Tasting Room.
- Savings on reserve tastings or special wine and food pairings.
Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection
Visa has partnered with a large group of luxury hotels all over the world. By booking and paying through the Visa Signature Hotels portal, you can enjoy several special benefits just by using your Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card. No elite status or extra payments are required — it’s all included. Terms apply.
- Best available rate guarantee.
- Automatic room upgrade, based on availability.
- Complimentary Wi-Fi.
- Complimentary breakfast for two.
- VIP guest status.
- Late checkout on request.
- A unique benefit based on each property.
While that last one varies by property, we find that most of the time it is a $25 food and beverage credit. Since breakfast is included, this could mean a round of drinks at the bar or perhaps a meal at the restaurant for dinner.
When you consider the cost for Wi-Fi, breakfast, upgrades, late checkouts and a $25 food and beverage credit, the value is pretty good.
The bottom line
The Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card itself has a great value proposition, especially when you factor in its Visa Signature card benefits.
Still, the points-earning rate is not as high compared to other Marriott cards. But for the infrequent traveler who doesn’t want to spend a lot of money on annual fees, this provides a chance to earn elite nights and Bonvoy points, getting you closer to your next vacation.
How to maximize your rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2020, including those best for:
Planning a trip? Check out these articles for more inspiration and advice:
How to plan your travel rewards strategy for 2020
Ask a points nerd: What’s the best way to use my travel credit card points?
Find the best travel credit card for you