26 Amazing Countries Where You Can Easily Get 12 Completely Free Hotel Nights

While these destinations are not the very best to get the highest amount of free hotel nights, getting 12 completely free hotel nights is still a pretty good deal that all Canadians can easily take advantage of (or 6 nights without a travel buddy). It gives you a lot more destination options, like these 26 amazing countries.

You can choose from literally over a thousand hotel options in 50+ total countries if you don’t mind getting 12 nights instead of 21 with the Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card‘s new limited-time increased welcome bonus (these 5 countries are among those that give you 21 nights instead).

(We also compared the Marriott Bonvoy Card head-to-head with the Cobalt Card, whose welcome bonus offers the same 6 free nights, but is not for everyone—unlike this one.)

So to be very clear, this is not the complete list of your hotel or country options: you can check out the full list of all Marriott category 2 hotels if you want to see them all (our recommendations and more details are coming soon).

It was hard to narrow it down and leave out so many other countries (especially as someone who loves variety and having options), but I chose to highlight the destinations that most travelers will be excited about.

We had to exclude great ones since some hotels are not in the country’s most popular destinations (like in Finland, Taiwan, or Turkey) and some countries are just not that popular (like Serbia, Kazakhstan, or Russia)… even if the hotels and cities themselves are often amazing (and arguably better than some on this list—every traveler has different tastes).

So here are the 26 top countries, by region.

 

Asia: 8 best countries for Marriott category 2 hotels

The best continent to get many hotel options (and very luxurious ones too).

 

1. Cambodia

This underrated Southeast Asian country is beautiful and you can visit both of its major cities.

Available destinations:

  • Siem Reap
  • Phnom Penh
Angkor Wat near Siem Reap, Cambodia (photo credit: William Zhang)

 

Cambodia hotels:

Flytrippers’ other co-founder Kevin spent a month in Cambodia and loved how it was more affordable than Thailand and how it seemed like the country was developing very quickly (with so many construction cranes).

He stayed in both hotels and had a great experience. Siem Reap is where all the tourists are, but the hotel had a better location. In the capital of Phnom Penh, the hotel had an epic view—and he was pleasantly surprised by how fun the city was.

Courtyard Phnom Penh Marriott category 2 hotel (photo credit: Marriott)

 

2. Thailand

A favorite of many travelers, Thailand is a must-see destination. It’s so touristy that you don’t have many options, but those that you do have are great.

Available destinations:

  • Bangkok
  • Pattaya
Bangkok, Thailand (photo credit: Florian Wehde)

 

Thailand hotels:

Bangkok is one of Kevin’s favorite cities in the world and he has been 7 times. It’s definitely a city to explore at least once in your life! The hotel there has a great location to explore all the city has to offer. Your other option is in Pattaya, a popular resort city that you’ll either love or hate (but the hotel there is brand new).

Aloft Bangkok (photo credit: Marriott)

 

3. Malaysia

An eco-hotel in the rainforest, beachfront resorts, luxury urban hotels… Malaysia has it all.

Available destinations:

  • Johor Bahru (Singapore suburb)
  • Borneo
  • Kuala Lumpur
  • Bandar Penawar
  • Kuantan

(This is in addition to the category 1 hotels in Penang and Kuala Lumpur.)

Bandar Penawar beach (photo credit: Marriott)

 

Malaysia hotels:

Kuala Lumpur is an amazing city that we loved. We also enjoyed our stay at the beach resort in Miri, on the island of Borneo. And if you want to visit another country, the one near Singapore is a quick bus ride to the city (that didn’t cost me more than a few dollars) and Singapore is awesome.

Most of the hotels are luxurious, but the one that stands out and is really unique is in the Borneo rainforest near Mulu National Park.

Mulu Marriott Resort & Spa (photo credit: Marriott)

 

4. Indonesia

A magnificent country that you can explore very thoroughly whether you like mountains, beaches, historical sites, spiritual retreats, or urban adventures.

Available destinations:

  • Bali
  • Jakarta
  • Belitung
  • Manado
  • Surabaya
  • Sumatra

(This is in addition to the category 1 hotels in all those locations and even others.)

View of the Bali jungle from the Element Ubud (photo credit: Marriott)

 

Indonesia hotels:

The only additional destination compared to category 1 is Yogyakarta, which has nice attractions. But the hotels on all islands are a lot more luxurious, for example, the Element by Westin Bali Ubud was one of my favorite hotel stays ever, nothing less.

Many others are full-service 5-star hotels, even some JW Marriotts (one of the most luxurious of Marriott’s 30 hotel brands).

Sheraton Belitung Marriott category 2 hotel (photo credit: Marriott)

 

5. China

If you want the most options (outside of the US), China is the spot. And many are located in the top destinations—and are pretty luxurious.

Available destinations:

  • Shanghai
  • Hainan
  • Xi’an
  • Chengdu
  • Tibet
  • Hangzhou
  • Guangzhou
  • Qingdao
  • Kunming
  • Beijing (suburbs)
  • and many others

(This is in addition to the category 1 hotels in some of those locations and even others.)

West Lake, Hangzhou, China (photo credit: Sam Sabri)

 

China hotels:

It is overwhelming to have this many options (143), so we’ll have a more detailed look soon. But I’ll say it again: I loved the weeks I spent exploring 5 cities in China. There are plenty of options for urban adventures and cultural/historical sights like in Shanghai, a city I enjoyed. But there are also mountain resorts like in Heshan or hotels close to natural attractions like in Tibet.

And the beachfront hotels on the tropical island of Hainan, known as “China’s Hawaii”, look pretty nice too.

Marriott Haikou (photo credit: Marriott)

 

6. India

Visiting the top attractions in the world’s 2nd-most populous country is possible with the very high number of options in India.

Available destinations:

  • Agra
  • Kolkata
  • Pune
  • Amritsar
  • Bhopal
  • Mumbai
  • Lucknow
  • Chennai
  • and many others

(This is in addition to the category 1 hotels in some of those locations and even others.)

Taj Mahal near Agra, India (photo credit: Jovyn Chamb)

 

India hotels:

There are so many beautiful luxurious hotels to choose from, but let’s highlight the 5-star hotel in Agra, near the Taj Mahal.

Courtyard Agra (photo credit: Marriott)
 

7. Vietnam

A country that so many people love to explore, Vietnam has one very good hotel option that stands out.

Available destinations:

  • Da Nang
  • Ho Chi Minh City suburbs
Hoi An, Vietnam (photo credit: Jil Beckmann)

 

Vietnam hotels:

Kevins stayed at the beachfront hotel in Danang, in the central part of the country, and it was a great hotel. He enjoyed the city, and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Hoi An (pictured above) is nearby too. The other hotel is not an ideal location unless you want a more authentic local experience, but it happens to be brand new.

Four Points by Sheraton Danang (photo credit: Marriott)

 

8. Nepal

The mountainous country where Mount Everest is located is adored by many travelers, and you can at least visit the capital city.

Available destination:

  • Kathmandu
Kathmandu, Nepal (photo credit: Ben Pauer)

 

Nepal hotels:

The city is the country’s largest, has 7 UNESCO World Heritage sites in its vicinity, and is surrounded by beautiful mountains. One of the hotels has beautiful locally-inspired decor and great views.

Aloft Kathmandu Marriott category 2 hotel (photo credit: Marriott)

 

Europe: 10 best countries for Marriott category 2 hotels

A lot of nice European destinations are available.

 

9. Spain

For the most options, the Iberian country is your best bet with plenty of hotels all over, in amazing cities (including on one very beautiful archipelago).

  • Canary Islands
  • Sevilla
  • Cordoba
  • Valencia
  • and many others

(This is in addition to the category 1 hotels in many other cities.)

Gran Canaria, Spain (photo credit: Hert Niks)

 

Spain hotels:

You have some near the beach in Alicante, near wineries in La Rioja, in the middle of a vibrant city in Valencia…

I stayed at the hotels in Sevilla (probably my favorite city in the country), Cordoba (walking distance from the old town), Almeria (directly downtown), and Huelva (a stop on the way to Portugal’s Algarve coast)… but the one in Toledo was a highlight, and it has one of the best views ever.

View from the AC Hotel Ciudad de Toledo (photo credit: Marriott)

 

10. Czechia

There’s more to Czechia than Prague, and you can explore 2 of the country’s largest cities!

Available destinations:

  • Brno
  • Pilsen
Brno, Czechia (photo credit: Martin Lostak)

 

Czechia hotels:

Pilsen is a great base to explore the historic Bohemia region with its spa towns, hot springs, castles, natural landscapes, and pretty little towns (and the city itself is the birthplace of the Pilsner type of beer). Brno is the country’s 2nd-largest city and is surrounded by the beautiful landscapes of the Moravia region, with vineyards, gorges, caves, and UNESCO World Heritage sites (and the city itself has many cool sights).

The hotels are both very close to the city centers too, each offering great views from the rooms.

Courtyard Pilsen (photo credit: Marriott)

 

11. Poland

Poland is a great destination, one of the most affordable countries in central Europe and you can visit 2 cool cities there.

Available destinations:

  • Warsaw
  • Szczecin

(This is in addition to the category 1 and 2 airport hotels in a few cities.)

Warsaw, Poland (photo credit: Lasma Artmane)

 

Poland hotels:

The capital city of Warsaw is the one I’ve visited, and I very much enjoyed it (even if it was during the winter). One of the 2 hotels there is very well located near the city center. And in Szczecin, in the western part of the country, both are brand-new hotels and also close to the city center.

Moxy Warsaw (photo credit: Marriott)

 

12. Latvia & Lithuania

The Baltic region looks fascinating with its mix of Eastern, Northern, and Central European vibe… and you can visit one of the area’s largest cities and another cool one. I’m taking the liberty of combining these 2 neighboring countries that are often visited at the same time.

Available destinations:

  • Riga, Latvia
  • Kaunas, Lithuania
Riga, Latvia (photo credit: Milan Zmatlo)

 

Latvia hotel:

Riga’s beautiful old town is famous and its nightlife is too, but there is much more to discover. Like everywhere else, you also have plenty of day trip opportunities.

The hotel is very recent and is centrally-located, offering great views of Riga.

AC Hotel Riga (photo credit: Marriott)

 

13. Romania

A fascinating country in Eastern Europe, Romania has a lot to offer, starting in its very cool capital city.

Available destination:

  • Bucharest
The Parliament, one of the world’s heaviest buildings, in Romania (photo credit: Dimitry Anikin)

 

Romania hotels:

We very much enjoyed our short stay in the city in 2018 and definitely look forward to returning to this metropolis and cultural capital of Romania.

Especially with the brand-new hotel directly in the old town. It is Marriott’s trendy and modern Moxy brand, while the other is far away in the suburbs so we stayed in an Airbnb when we were there.

Moxy Bucharest Old Town (photo credit: Marriott)

 

14. Germany

A popular country, only a few hotels are available close to the city centers, but 2 are in cool cities.

Available destinations:

  • Bremen
  • Mannheim
  • Darmstadt
  • others in suburbs
Bremen, Germany (photo credit: Sander S)

 

Germany hotels:

The 2 options in the pretty ans vibrant northern city of Bremen are well-located, as is the one on the Rhine waterfront opposite Mannheim, in Ludwigshafen. If you want a smaller town, the one in Darmstadt is also near the city center. Each of the 3 cities has a modern Moxy-branded hotel.

View of the Rhine from the Moxy Ludwigshafen (photo credit: Marriott)

 

15. Italy

There are a few options in the country if you are roadtripping and have a car, but just one is well-located if you don’t.

Available destinations:

  • Brescia
  • Pisa suburbs
  • Padova suburbs
  • Genova suburbs
  • Siena suburbs
  • a few other suburbs
Brescia, Italy (photo credit: Luca Giarelli)

 

Italy hotels:

The hotel in the historic city of Brescia, in northern Italy, is close to the city center and its many attractions. A great way to experience the dolce vita in one of the most popular countries!

AC Hotel Brescia (photo credit: Marriott)

 

16. Greece

An amazing country, it’s too popular for great category 2 options. But if you want to discover a less-touristy town with gorgeous Greek landscapes, you can.

Available destination:

  • Patra
Patra, Greece (photo credit: Dragan Miljkovic)

 

Greece hotel:

Patra is a waterfront city on the Peloponnese peninsula, and the brand-new hotel has a great waterfront location too. There are historical sites and plenty of hiking opportunities nearby and the city has many annual events. It’s also the gateway to Italy as ferries leave from Patra.

Moxy Patra Marina (photo credit: Marriott)

 

17. United Kingdom

The popular country doesn’t have many options, but you do have 2.

Available destinations:

  • Oxford
  • Southampton
  • others in some cities’ suburbs

(This is in addition to the category 1 and 2 airport hotels in a few cities.)

Oxford, England (photo credit: Sidharth Bhatia)

 

United Kingdom hotels:

Southampton is a popular town in southern England, but the hotel in Oxford, home of the famous university, is very well-located just beside the castle.

Courtyard Oxford City Centre behind the Oxford Castle (photo credit: Marriott)
 

18. Azerbaijan

The Caucasus nation looks very intriguing (despite its recent actions in the neighboring disputed territory), and there are amazing luxury options that might make this my next destination.

Available destinations:

  • Baku
  • Shahdag
  • Tbilisi (neighboring Georgia)
Baku, Azerbaijan (photo credit: Lloyd Alozie)

 

Azerbaijan hotels:

Located on a peninsula jutting out into the Caspian Seabody with special legal status“, the capital and metropolis of Baku looks very interesting.

And the luxury hotel resort in the mountains is literally one of the Marriott hotels I look most forward to visiting (in the summer—I love nature, but not cold nature).

Park Chalet Shahdag Autograph Collection Marriott category 2 hotel (photo credit: Marriott)

 

Middle East: 3 best countries for Marriott category 2 hotels

You have great options in the Middle East region, which we consider Northern Africa a part of for the sake of this particular list.

 

19. Morocco

The fascinating country has great luxury options in great cities.

Available destinations:

  • Marrakesh
  • Fès
  • Casablanca
Marrakesh, Morocco (photo credit: Max Libertine)

 

Morocco hotels:

The one in Casablanca is an urban hotel in the entire region’s most dynamic cities, while the others are urban resorts. Marrakesh is the most popular destination and looks like it’s a simply fascinating city (and it’s the gateway to the desert), while Fès is still underrated but has a long history and historic city center (one of the largest car-free areas in the world). 

Marriott Hotel Jnan Palace Fes (photo credit: Marriott)

 

20. Egypt

A dream destination for many, it’s actually one of the greatest countries to visit for many luxury hotel options!

Available destinations:

  • Cairo (Giza Pyramids)
  • Sharm El Sheikh
  • Dahab
  • Hurghada
  • Alexandria

[instagram url=https://www.instagram.com/p/Blgubnplels/ hidecaption=true]

 

Egypt hotels:

I stayed at the one in Giza as pictured above, and it’s hard to beat seeing the sunrise over the famous Pyramids from the hotel pool.

The others look very nice too, especially if you want nice waterfront resorts and don’t mind the more touristy and less authentic areas. But also, the Red Sea resort towns of Hurghada and Sharm are world-renowned for their diving opportunities!

Sheraton Soma Bay Resort (photo credit: Marriott)

 

21. United Arab Emirates

If you want to visit an extremely modern and developed nation while still getting a culture shock, these 2 options look great!

Available destinations:

  • Dubai
  • Al Ain

(This is in addition to the category 1 hotel in Sharjah.)

Dubai, UAE (photo credit: ZQ Lee)

 

United Arab Emirates hotels:

The urban hotel in Dubai looks very nice, and the city has a lot to offer. But an escape in the desert far from the hustle and bustle is another great trip idea.

Aloft Al Ain (photo credit: Marriott)
 

 

Africa: 1 best country for Marriott category 2 hotels

Not the most popular continent, but it has so much to offer.

 

22. South Africa

By far the best country for luxury hotels on the continent.

Available destinations:

  • Kruger National Park
  • Cape Town
  • Durban
  • and many others

(This is in addition to the many category 1 hotels.)

View from one of the hotels (photo credit: Marriott)

 

South Africa hotels:

The country’s top attraction is Kruger National Park, to see the Big 5 on a safari. Well, the hotel pictured above is a lodge directly in the park and is stunning (Kevin stayed there and organized his own safari for less than $100).

Others are very luxurious and are located all over the country, like this one on the beach south of Durban.

Protea Karridene Beach (photo credit: Marriott)

 

South America: 4 best countries for Marriott category 2 hotels

A continent that many travelers love to explore, South America has plenty of great options.

 

23. Argentina

Arguably the most attractive country in South America, Argentina has 2 great options near the most popular natural attractions in the northern parts of the country (and north is good in that hemisphere).

Available destinations:

  • Salta
  • Cordoba

(This is in addition to the category 1 hotel in Tucuman.)

Salta, Argentina (photo credit: Hector Ramon Perez)

 

Argentina hotels:

Salta has gorgeous desertic landscapes, and roadtripping in that region is on many travelers’ bucket list. Cordoba is the country’s 2nd-largest city and might have more urban and cultural attractions, but even its surrounding region, with pretty rolling hills, is worth a detour. Both hotels are near the city centers and are full-service luxury hotels.

Sheraton Salta (photo credit: Marriott)

 

24. Colombia

Colombia is one of the trendiest destinations and has many options (and we often spot deals in the $400s roundtrip to get there).

Available destinations:

  • Bogota
  • Santa Marta
  • Barranquilla
  • Medellin
  • Cali

(This is in addition to the category 1 hotel in Cali.)

Santa Marta, Colombia (photo credit: Alejandro Ortiz)

 

Colombia hotels:

The one in Santa Marta is for nature lovers (and is very nice), while all the others are in urban settings for those who want to discover Colombia’s rich culture.

This hotel in Bogota even has a fancy car display.

Four Points by Sheraton Bogota (photo credit: Marriott)

 

25. Peru

Peru is a popular destination and you can experience its largest city.

Available destination:

  • Lima
Lima, Peru (photo credit: Aarom Ore)

 

Peru hotel:

The Miraflores neighborhood is the best spot to be in the massive Peruvian metropolis, and that’s where I stayed when I went. There’s a lot to do and see, or you can just admire the Pacific Ocean.

This hotel has a great location and just opened in 2020!

Fairfield Lima Miraflores (photo credit: Marriott)

 

26. Brazil

There aren’t many options, but this one stands out given its unique location in the wineries region and the fact we often spot flight deals to Brazil.

Available destinations:

  • Vale dos Vinehos
  • Vitoria
View of the vineyards at the Hotel & Spa do Vinho Autograph Collection (photo credit: Marriott)

 

Brazil hotels:

It is older, and more of a classic luxurious style. But the setting can’t be beat. Marriott’s Autograph Collection is a soft brand, which means it consists of unique boutique-type hotels that aren’t cookie-cutter chain hotels.

Hotel & Spa do Vinho Autograph Collection (photo credit: Marriott)

 

Bonus: Mexico

Since we like giving you more for your money here at Flytrippers, we sometimes add bonuses to our lists.

It’s worth mentioning Mexico since it’s so close to us, and it actually has 2 very interesting options that stand out.

Available destinations:

  • Los Cabos
  • Tijuana
  • Mexico City suburbs
  • and many others in less popular cities
Cabo San Lucas, Mexico (photo credit: Tatiana Bernardi)

 

Mexico hotels:

The one in Los Cabos / Cabo San Lucas really stands out since it’s such a popular destination—and the hotel is very close to the beach. But others like in iconic Tijuana are grat for urban adventurers (there are dozens of options in Mexico, it’s just that they aren’t usually in great locations).

Fairfield Los Cabos (photo credit: Marriott)

 

How to take advantage of these 12 free nights

As a reminder of the basics, unlocking the Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card‘s welcome bonus will give you 66,000 Marriott points. That’s 132,000 Marriott points if your travel buddy also gets one.

That’s enough for a whopping 12 completely free nights in over 1,100 hotels around the world: Marriott category 2 hotels (or 21 nights in some cool destinations).

Marriott Bonvoy American Express® Card
Flytrippers Valuation
of Welcome Bonus alone
≈ $
minimum income requirement: $0
spend $3,000
in 3 months
Terms and conditions apply. Flytrippers editorial opinion only. Amex is not responsible for maintaining the content on this site. Please click "Apply Now" to see most up-to-date information.
Marriott Bonvoy American Express® Card
Flytrippers Valuation
of Welcome Bonus alone
≈ $
minimum income
requirement: $0
spend $3,000
in 3 months
Terms and conditions apply. Flytrippers editorial opinion only. Amex is not responsible for maintaining the content on this site. Please click "Apply Now" to see most up-to-date information.

That’s as easy and great a deal as you’ll ever find! It’s one of the best in Canada—if not the best. We’ve taken advantage of it ourselves and it really works.

Have a question? Join us for our Facebook Live about travel rewards on Sunday at 12 PM Eastern.

 

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Summary

If you want more options in terms of destinations, these 26 countries are great options to get 12 free hotel nights. The limited-time increased welcome bonus on the Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card is a great opportunity to travel for less if you plan your trips around these Marriott category 2 hotels.

What would you like to know about these destinations? Tell us in the comments below.

 

Explore awesome destinations: travel inspiration

Learn pro tricks: travel tips

Discover free travel: travel rewards

 

Featured image: Courtyard Oxford City Centre (photo credit: Marriott)

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Andrew D'Amours

Andrew is the co-founder of Flytrippers. He is passionate about traveling the world but also, as a former management consultant, about the travel industry itself. He shares his experiences to help you save money on travel. As a very cost-conscious traveler, he loves finding deals and getting free travel thanks to travel rewards points... to help him visit every country in the world (current count: 62/193 Countries, 46/50 US States & 9/10 Canadian Provinces).

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