This is a true story, during my time in San Juan, Puerto Rico last week, the 7 Nights + Miles Marriott deal was not the only travel hacking related thing that came up. It turns out that, I was talking to a newly minted Marriott Platinum who did not know that this new status comes with great perks that go far beyond Marriott. In many ways, Marriott Platinum and Gold benefits are very similar, however, once you reach Platinum Elite with Marriott, you can get matched as a SPG platinum. Then by linking SPG to Delta, you get most of the Silver Medallion perks. But there’s more…you also get full United Silver status as well as Ritz-Carlton platinum status. What makes this status even more interesting is that there are many tales of people being able to fast track to Marriott Platinum Elite status via a challenge. Before heading to the AC Marriott in San Juan, I was very tempted to contact Marriott and request such a challenge. I already have another Marriott stay in a couple of weeks, but I would need to stay 9 times during the next 90 days.

To recap, as a Marriott Gold Elite, one can request a challenge and reach Platinum Elite with as little as 9 stays. This would normally take 75 stays or 45 stays if one holds both versions of the Marriott credit card, each of which gives you a 15-night credit every year. That’s how my friend was able to reach Platinum so fast. Once you’ve reached Platinum Elite status, request SPG to match the status and link that account to Delta for Silver Medallion-like perks. Then, also match Your Marriott top status with Ritz-Carlton’s. Do a little research to see all the benefits you can have once you hit Marriott Platinum.

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