While the card typically does not receive as much attention as its Marriott counterpart (the Marriott Rewards credit card), the Ritz-Carlton Rewards card has given the points and miles world something to talk about – to the tune of 3 FREE Ritz-Carlton nights!
Did you say Ritz-Carlton?
Did you say 3 free nights?
Did you say pancakes? No pancakes? So just the 3 free Ritz-Carlton nights then?
Ok, I am listening, proceed…
If you have ever stayed at a Ritz-Carlton Hotel, you know the high standard that is maintained at each of their properties. If you haven’t ever stayed at a Ritz-Carlton property (these hotels can be PRICEY!), this just may be your chance to stay, at the very reasonable price of… FREE!
The high Ritz-Carlton standard doesn’t come cheap – but the new sign-up bonus offer on the Ritz-Carlton branded credit card can get your pretty little head resting on a Ritz-Carlton pillow – by earning you 3 free nights at a Tier 1-4 Ritz-Carlton property after $5,000 in spending in the first three months!
In addition, you will receive 10,000 Marriott points for adding an authorized user! Easy points, people!
Considering that Ritz-Carlton nights can easily exceed $500 per night, this sign-up bonus card can be worth in excess of $1,500 – which is how this card hit #4 on the AYP August Top Cards!
Remember, the sign-up bonus is limited to Tier 1-4 properties, meaning that the Tier 5 premier Ritz-Carlton properties are not available for redemption, but don’t worry! There are some absolutely stunning options to choose from!
Here are my 3 favorite Tier 1-4 Ritz-Carlton properties of which I have stayed…
And here are a couple Tier 1-4 Ritz-Carlton properties that are high on my list for potential stays!
Ok, so what’s the catch?
Well, I wouldn’t call it a “catch” but there is an annual fee of… $450 –STAY WITH ME HERE! I can prove to you why that $450 is MORE than worth it!
The annual fee is high (no denying that…), but there are some awesome perks that come with it, including Marriott Gold Status (the first year) and potential to earn Platinum Elite status with $75,000 spending each calendar year (LOL that is A LOT of spending):
Why should you care about Marriott Gold Status?
Well, in addition to nice perks like late check-out and complimentary room upgrades, you also gain guaranteed lounge access – meaning free refreshments and complimentary breakfast for you and one guest – available at JW Marriott, Autograph Collection, Renaissance Hotels, Delta Hotels and Marriott Hotels.
The perks don’t stop at Gold Status! In addition, as a cardholder you will receive an annual $300 airline incidental fee credit (which reportedly can be used to purchase airline gift cards…but you didn’t hear it from me) – cutting your annual fee to $150!
Also, you will gain a Priority Pass Select Lounge Membership, (3) complimentary Ritz-Carlton Club Lounge upgrades, and a $100 Global Entry (or TSA PreCheck) reimbursement!
ATTENTION! If you do not have Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, get it! It is so easy to get this fee reimbursed by a credit card and it will save you time and hassle when navigating the TSA security lines!
Want even more benefits!? Ok you got ’em!
- A 10% annual bonus on points earned
- 3 Club Level upgrades per year on paid Ritz-Carlton stays (stays up to 7 nights)
- $100 credit for incidentals on paid Ritz-Carlton stays (stay must be 2 nights or more)
Lastly, the card is a Visa Infinite, meaning you can save $100 each time you purchase domestic coach round-trip airfare for two people! Yes, you read that correctly – EACH and EVERY time – Unlimited! I have never had a Visa Infinite card (most of my Visa cards are Visa Signature), but since 95% of my travel is with my travel companion (companion=Editor-in-Chief/Wife Mallory), the $100 off deal has me pretty pumped!
The one thing that I have read about Visa Infinite cards is that they [may] require an initial credit line of at least $15,000. If this is a higher limit than you are typically provided, there are multiple reports of people applying for the old Visa Signature version (featuring the 2 night sign-up bonus) and then messaging Chase to be matched to the newer 3 night bonus offer with the Visa Infinite designation.
So what about all that Chase 5/24 talk?
There have been reports suggesting that the Ritz-Carlton Rewards card is not subject to the infamous Chase 5/24 rule – great news for me! While we are not yet sure if the Chase Sapphire Reserve will be subject to the 5/24 (it probably will), if you are past 5/24, this card can serve as a good premium card alternative!
Tip – If you have signed up for less than 5 credit cards in the last 24 months, I advise going for the Chase Sapphire Reserve (coming August 21st), before signing up for the Ritz-Carlton Rewards card!
I love the Ritz-Carlton, and I love this card!
Mallory had it a little while back when the bonus was for 140,000 Marriott Rewards points (rather than the three free nights) and before the card gained its Visa Infinite designation, so I think that I am up for a sign-up next!
Ritz-Carlton… you are beautiful!
Anyone out there considering a sign-up for this card?