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COMMENT: Marriott BonVoy App Has Some Serious Problems

Bon Voy is a Marriott Hotels app, which is in need of a serious overall, it simply does not work in the best interests of customers staying at a Sheraton, Marriott W Hotel, or one of their premium properties, with Marriott appearing to be more interested in getting a booking direct than dishing out points real time.

While it’s real time for bookings it’s not real time when it comes to the allocation of points similar to what one gets with airlines.

This is no small hotel group, with 582 hotels and resorts under the Marriott operation with 205,053 rooms operating under the brand, in addition to 160 hotels with 47,765 rooms planned for development.

The brands linked to the Bon Voy app include Sheraton, Westin, St. Regis, The Ritz Carlton, W Hotels, and several others.

This is an app that’s designed to make it easy to solicit direct booking cutting out the likes of Expedia, Bookings.com etc, and trust me it’s easy to make a booking but you will pay a top rate. see

Back in June Marriott were bragging that the app had been redesigned to offer members the best available rate, as well as personalized recommendations and offers to maximize their points earned when traveling or from everyday spend.

The launch on the Android OS was designed to deliver a better experience similar to Apple’s iOS operating system app that was rolled out in 2021.

They claim that at the centrepiece of the company’s mobile-first mindset, the Marriott Bonvoy app enables members to customize their experience through features such as contactless check-in and check-out, and the ability to request services and amenities via chat and mobile requests.

Really because for me, the mobile key featured in the app did not work on my room door, or in the lift at the Sheraton Hotel in Berlin where i have been staying, despite two attempts by staff to activate my room key.

I have been staying at Sheraton, Marriott, and W Hotels for decades and as a former foreign journalist I clocked up some serious bed nights in their properties.

ChannelNews is the #1 technology trade site in Australia and if there is one thing that this industry does it’s travel whether it be to see clients or like I am doing right now visiting a major trade show.

This year I have stayed in a Marriott property including a Westin in Costa Mesa in the USA, A Melbourne Marriott, the Denver Sheraton, and this week for 10 nights at the Sheraton Berlin and in short the service that made these brands is fas diapearing.

Next week I will be at the Sheraton in Singapore.

So, what’s the problem?

Two words customer service.

After booking hotel rooms for an overseas trip to IFA in Berlin and then into Singapore, via the Bon Voy app I suddenly discovered on arriving in Germany reference to my Berlin stay had totally disappeared from the app both in current and past bookings.

Luckily, I had saved an email version of the booking.

Numerous attempts by Sheraton Hotel staff to reactivate the booking in the app failed.

Then a few days later it reappeared.

But the biggest problem is the app is real time for bookings and the removal of bookings but not real time when it comes to the dishing out of points.

By the time I leave the Sheraton Hotel in Berlin I would have clocked up 10 nights but when it comes to the allocation of points, it’s showing that I have only stayed four nights in a Marriott property.

Add this to the points I already had and my status plus the benefits that come with it are suddenly enhanced.

The only problem is that when I move to my next Sheraton property in Singapore, I cannot take advantage of the points that I have earned because it’s not showing up in the app.

This is a seriously questionable problem, that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission should investigate. When I left my Denver property my points took 10 days to show up.

Another problem in using this app is that the points are not rolled over year to year which is more about a Company who appear to be more interested in revenue than customer service and benefits.

As for service Sheraton Hotels are not cheap and since COVID their customer service has gone downhill.

Take breakfast, this morning at my hotel, there was at least 50 people sitting down for breakfast but the there was only one toaster that would only take two slices of bread it was also incredibly slow.

Gone are doorman and when you question staff about the problems with the Bon Voy app the magic word “Unfortunately” comes out with staff claiming that they cannot do anything about problems with the app.

Then there is the issue of in room problems and Sheratons idea of customer service.

In Denver some interior designer thought it was smart to mount a giant TV on the wall facing a window with the sofa underneath the TV.

The TV in my bedroom froze eliminating the ability to actually watch either TVs with staff unable to fix the problem, there went my football games.

And if that was not enough in a city where the temperature was -15 the air conditioning and heating failed.

For a hotel chain that is so large a little bit of IT investment would go a long way. Airlines such as Qantas and Singapore airlines seem to be able to get it right and real time, when it comes to points allocation why not a giant hotel group such as Marriott.

Maybe after three decades of Marriott Hotels it’s time to move on to a new hotel group.

If you have had problems with this hotel group and in particular the Bon Voy app we would love to hear from you.

Send your stories to [email protected]

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