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When Marriott acquired Starwood Preferred Guest a few years back, it folded three separate loyalty programs (SPG, Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Marriott Rewards) into the new Marriott Bonvoy Program. This streamlined branding has helped minimize confusion, and new card holders have benefited from new perks and welcome bonuses on Marriott's diverse credit card portfolio. We're currently seeing elevated welcome bonuses on two popular cards: the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card is currently offering a bonus of 100,000 points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months, and the no annual fee Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card is offering 50,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months.

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But that's not to say the confusion has been eliminated entirely. The application eligibility restrictions for Marriott Bonvoy cards are about as difficult to keep track of as you could possibly imagine. They vary from card to card, and there's not a lot of logic at play here. So if you're interested in acquiring one of the four Bonvoy-branded cards currently available to new applicants — the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card or the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card — use this cheat sheet to see if you'll be able to sign up based on which cards you've had or currently have. (We can't take credit for being the first to visualize this info, though. Thanks to Greg from Frequent Miler for inspiring us with this chart.)

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Marriot Card BreakdownSource: The Points Guy

If you're wondering where the SPG Amex cards are on in this chart, welcome to the Bonvoy era. The last three cards under "Cards You've Had" are the SPG Amex cards with their updated branding. As a refresher, here's how the SPG Amex cards are converting to Bonvoy Amex names:

Related: Does it makes sense to hold multiple Bonvoy cards?

SPG Amex To Marriott Bonvoy Amex Jan 2019Source: The Points Guy

Keep in mind that Amex and Chase now offer card bonus qualification tools on their websites, and these should let you know whether or not you can successfully apply for a card and earn the welcome bonus before the system runs your credit and you officially apply for the card. But a sound travel rewards card strategy includes some advance planning, so if you know you're interested in one of these cards, you might as well consult this handy chart whipped up by the incredible graphics team here at TPG.

Related: Which Marriott Bonvoy credit card is right for you?

Bottom line

Marriott offers a number of great credit cards with strong welcome bonuses and incredibly valuable free night certificates. Unfortunately, the application rules are rather complicated as you to balance issuer specific rules with additional restrictions around the Marriott card family. Next time you're applying for a Marriott credit card, like the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card with its elevated 100,000 point bonus, make sure you check this chart to confirm your eligibility first.

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