Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card Review: No Fee, All Reward [2021]

People beginning to explore travel rewards may have a new go-to credit card for their wallets.
Last updated Dec 15, 2020 | By Kevin Payne

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A new no-fee credit card was recently added to the Marriott co-branded card collection: The Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card. While it offers enough rewards that new travelers might love, it doesn’t have the firepower of some other travel rewards credit cards.

Is the generous welcome offer enough incentive for you to add this new card to your wallet? Find out in this Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card review — learn the pros and cons of Marriott’s latest card addition and find out who it’s best suited for.

A Great Choice for New Travelers

Benefits

  • 30,000 point sign-up bonus offer
  • 3X points at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy
  • 15 Elite Night Credits each calendar year
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • No annual fee

Drawbacks

  • No free night for cardmember anniversary

Jump To

Who should get the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card?

People just starting to explore travel rewards may appreciate the rewards and benefits that come with the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card. While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles that higher-tier Bonvoy branded cards offer, it's a no-annual-fee card, so you don't need to worry about an added cost. This makes the Marriott Bonvoy Bold one of the best hotel credit cards for someone that wants an entry-level card.

Travelers who already have other Bonvoy-branded cards could possibly get this credit card, depending on eligibility, to supplement points earned from other Bonvoy cards without adding another annual fee. Loyal Marriott travelers could also benefit from the Bonvoy Bold card because of the points-earning potential it offers through stays at most Marriott properties around the world.

Card basics

Card type Travel
Credit card issuer Chase
Credit card network Visa
Annual fee $0
Intro bonus Earn 30,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months of account opening
Reward rate 3X Bonvoy points at over 7,000 hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy; 2X Bonvoy points on eligible travel purchases; 1X points per $1 on everything else
Recommended credit score Excellent, Good
Foreign transaction fee None

Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card benefits and perks

  • Generous welcome offer: Earn 30,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months.
  • Multiple ways to earn points: You’ll earn 3X Bonvoy points at over 7,000 hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy; 2X Bonvoy points on eligible travel purchases; 1X points per $1 on everything else.
  • Silver Elite status: You’ll receive 15 Elite Night Credits annually, which qualifies you for Marriott Silver Elite status. With Silver Elite status, you'll enjoy perks like late checkout and bonus rewards on eligible Marriott hotel stays.
  • No foreign transaction fees: Use your card to make purchases outside the U.S. as much as you like without worrying about foreign transaction fees.
  • No expiration date: As long as you use your Marriott Bonvoy Bold card once every 24 months, your points won’t expire.
  • Baggage delay insurance & lost luggage reimbursement: You and your immediate family are covered up to $3,000 per passenger for checked or carry-on bags damaged or lost by the carrier.

  • Trip delay reimbursement: You’ll get reimbursed for travel expenses up to $500 per ticket if your trip is delayed more than 12 hours or requires an overnight stay.

  • Purchase protection: Cardmembers receive purchase protection coverage (up to $500 per claim or $50,000 per account) against damage or theft for 120 days following a new purchase made with their card.

  • Visa concierge service: Since the Bonvoy Bold is a Visa Signature card, you get 24/7 access to Visa concierge service, which can help you make travel arrangements, book event tickets, and more.

Drawbacks to the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card

  • No annual free night stays: Even though the higher-tier Bonvoy credit cards give cardmembers a free award night each year on their account anniversary, the Marriott Bonvoy Bold does not offer this benefit. 
  • Lower earning rates: The higher-tier Bonvoy cards come with higher earning rates than the Bonvoy Bold. With the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless, you can earn 6X points at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy and 2X points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases. Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant cardmembers earn 6X points on eligible purchases at participating Marriot Bonvoy hotels, 3X points at U.S. restaurants and on flights booked directly with airlines, and 2X points on all other eligible purchases. 

Earning & redeeming Marriott Bonvoy Points

Potential earnings in years one and two

Here's a look at how your points can add up with the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card. To calculate these values, we used a point valuation of one cent.

Remember, this is an estimation. The actual value will be determined by how much you spend and in which categories you spend.

Year one earnings: $685

Year two earnings: $385

These values are based on the FinanceBuzz Credit Card Rewards Valuation Model, which takes a look at points earned via spending, the welcome bonus, and the annual fee.

Note that the values above only account for general travel spending, not specific spending at Marriott properties. If you use your card frequently to book Marriott hotel stays, the value you get from it will likely increase considerably. 

Best ways to earn

Regular stays at Marriott hotels are the best way to earn points with the Bonvoy Bold Card, since you earn 3X points for every dollar spent at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy. With nearly 7,000 qualifying hotels in the loyalty program, you could earn points traveling almost anywhere in the world.

Along with your Marriott stays, using the Bonvoy Bold card for other travel purchases will net you 2X points per dollar spent. All other purchases will earn you 1X points per dollar. This includes categories like gas stations, restaurants, and grocery stores.

Categories Rewards rate
Hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy     3X
Other travel purchases 2X
All other purchases 1X

Maximizing your redemptions

Your best option for maximizing redemptions using points is to stay at Marriott Bonvoy hotels when traveling. You can also combine points with cash when booking hotel stays to stretch your points.

Another option for cardholders is to transfer your points to one of Marriott’s 40-plus airline partners. For every 60,000 points transferred, Marriott will add an extra 5,000 miles. Most airline programs transfer from points to miles at a 3:1 ratio. For example, 30,000 Bonvoy points might transfer to 10,000 United Airlines miles.

Points earned with the Marriott Bonvoy Bold card can be used to book air travel and car rentals through the Marriott travel portal. Other possible redemptions include gift cards and exclusive experiences.

Marriott Bonvoy Bold transfer partners

As mentioned, the Marriott Bonvoy program has over 40 airline partners. Typically, Bonvoy points will transfer to airline partners at a 3:1 ratio. While some may argue that this isn't the best value for your points, the best value for you really depends on your goals and how you prefer to redeem your rewards. If you're interested in using your Bonvoy points to offset the cost of airfare, you can transfer them to the following partners:

  •  AEGEAN Miles+Bonus
  • Aer Lingus AerClub
  • Aeroflot Bonus
  • Aeromexico ClubPremier
  • Air Canada Aeroplan
  • Air France-KLM Flying Blue
  • Air New Zealand Airpoints
  • Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan™
  • Alitalia MilleMiglia
  • American Airlines AAdvantage®
  • ANA Mileage Club
  • Asiana Airlines Asiana Club
  • Avianca LifeMiles
  • British Airways Executive Club
  • Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
  • Copa Airlines ConnectMiles
  • Delta SkyMiles®
  • Emirates Skywards®
  • Etihad Guest
  • FRONTIER Miles
  • Hainan Airlines Fortune Wings Club
  • Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles®
  • Iberia Plus
  • InterMiles
  • Japan Airlines JAL Mileage Bank
  • JetBlue TrueBlue
  • Korean Air SKYPASS
  • LATAM Airlines LATAM Pass
  • Multiplus Fidelidade
  • Qantas Frequent Flyer
  • Qatar Airways Privilege Club
  • SAA Voyager
  • Saudia Alfursan
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer®
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards®
  • TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go
  • Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus
  • Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles
  • United MileagePlus®
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
  • Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer
  • Vueling Club

Marriott Bonvoy Bold FAQs

Who is eligible for the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card?

Like most Marriott-branded cards, there are limits on who can qualify for this card. Those who aren’t eligible include current cardholders of the Marriott Bonvoy Premier Credit Card and Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card. You’re also ineligible if you previously held the Marriott Bonvoy Premier, Bonvoy Boundless, or Bonvoy Bold and received a cardmember bonus from one or more of these cards in the last 24 months.

If you aren’t disqualified based on the criteria above, there’s a chance you could qualify for the Marriott Bonvoy Bold card but not the new cardmember bonus. You’re ineligible for this bonus if you:

  • Are a current cardmember — or were a previous cardmember within the last 30 days — of the Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card
  • Are a current or previous cardmember of either the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card or Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card and received a new cardmember bonus or upgrade bonus in the last 24 months
  • Applied and were approved for the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card or Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card within the last 90 days

Does the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card have a foreign transaction fee?

No, there are no foreign transaction fees with the Marriott Bonvoy Bold card.

Does the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card have an annual fee?

No, the Marriott Bonvoy Bold doesn’t have an annual fee.

Does the Chase 5/24 rule apply to the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card?

The Marriott Bonvoy Bold card is known to be subject to Chase’s 5/24 rule. Because of this, you’ll have to decide whether this card is worth one of your five slots. There are other Chase credit cards that may provide better value.

What credit score do you need for the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card?

To get approved for the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card, you'll likely need a good to excellent credit score. Good credit scores typically fall within the 670 to 739 range.

Other cards to consider

If you’re loyal to Marriott hotels, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card may be a better option. While it has a $95 annual fee, new cardholders can also earn 75,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months. Boundless cardmembers earn 6X points at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy and 2X points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases. Also, this card earns you a free hotel night annually, valued up to 35,000 points.

A more versatile rewards card for travelers is the Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card. This credit card offers a considerable sign-up bonus that’s worth $750 through the Chase Ultimate Rewards Program. You could book travel directly through the program for maximum value or transfer points to one of Chase’s many travel partners. Or, if you'd prefer, you can redeem your points for cash back, gift cards, or use them to shopping online at select retailers.

A Great Choice for New Travelers

Special Offer

Earn 30,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months

See how these cards compare:

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card
  • 75,000 bonus point welcome offer
  • 6X points at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy
  • One free night each year
  • No foreign transaction fee
Chase Sapphire Preferred
Chase Sapphire Preferred
  • 80,000 point sign-up bonus
  • Up to $50 statement credit for grocery store purchases
  • 2X points on eligible dining and travel purchases
  • 25% more value when redeeming rewards for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • Premium travel protection benefits