Status Match Merry Go Round

This post is largely because of the incredible volume of emails, DMs, PMs, etc I keep getting about the Merry Go Round.

Indeed, I’ve mentioned I’ll update the master Status Match Merry Go Round™ post early this year (think late March / early April) both because the current master post has become incredibly unwieldy with all the changes and losses – and because I need time for things to settle a bit in Atlantic City and actually visit at a time that makes sense before I go through all that (it’s not quick to do!).

Most of this is GOOD NEWS!

Keep in mind that most people’s Hard Rock status expires at the end of February and a lot rides on what happens there in March.

But in the meantime, let me put into one place all the datapoints I have been given in the last few weeks and what we can’t yet possibly know (no matter how nicely you ask me 😉 ).

  • Hard Rock Atlantic City is now under the Unity program. If you have only had Wild Card before, you are virtually guaranteed at least one match to Unity ICON from March on using your Caesars Diamond card (caveat: unless they change that – right now they are very clear that Caesars Diamond matches to ICON). 
  • The once-in-a-lifetime match to ICON we have seen at other Unity locations would not apply at Hard Rock Atlantic City if you have only been matched to Rock Royalty previously. 
  • Hard Rock Atlantic City has told numerous people the once-in-a-lifetime match rule will not apply in Atlantic City (perhaps due to the competitiveness of the market or perhaps due to internal miscommunication). Many people liked to argue with me over the last 6 years that you couldn’t “rematch” to Wild Card Rock Royalty – but you absolutely could and I did it 6 times, you just didn’t get a single perk other than the swank looking card. So it’s entirely possible they decide that suits them better than denying rematches as it costs them almost nothing (you get free parking and waived resort fees, for the most part) if you don’t gamble.
  • Once agin, as of now, they are matching to Caesars Diamond. We can only hope that continues as most of our Wild Card Rock Royalty cards that have been converted to ICON expire Feb 29th.
  • This means you can still take that matched ICON card over to Ocean for Ocean Prime which includes the cruise and two free nights in Vegas. However, if you match in February, your ICON status will end in less than a month on Feb 29th, 2024 (some people have been told they are matched through 2025 but need to pick up a new card in March). Your Ocean benefits will expire June 30, 2024 if you match now.
  • In the past 2 years, Ocean has allowed those that matched from March to June to get status for the next program year (i.e. through June 2025 if that were to apply this year in March on). However, more than one person has told me they “are not” or “may not” do this this year. We won’t know for sure until March, so please don’t think I can tell you if you should wait for March. The conundrum is you can definitely match your not yet expired Hard Rock card now and it will definitely expire June 30th – or you can wait for March and hope you can still match Caesars Diamond at Hard Rock to ICON – but if Ocean says March matches expire this June, then maybe you wait for June? That would be the decision tree I would give anyone asking. Now I can point to this post 😉 
  • There is always a risk that Ocean changes their program entirely in July. Cruises could go away. Vegas could go away. Matches could go away entirely. The inactivity period to rematch which used to be 12 months and is now 18 months could change again. We don’t know.
  • Lastly, there have been a couple of reports of people taking their ICON cards to Borgata and being status challenge matched to Gold for three months only. Whether or not that continues, we don’t know. Whether or not they will let you rematch again after X amount of time? We don’t know.

That’s it! That is all of your data points. If you have questions, please ask them here or in the MilesTalk Facebook group – but please not via direct message. I cannot keep up one-on-one and if you ask here or in the group I’m answering everyone at the same time!

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  1. If i was matched to Hard Rock Rock Royalty back in Jun 22 in atlantic city and received my Hard Rock Icon card in the mail (which expired in 02/28/23) can still match from Caesars Diamond to Icon in Atlantic City?

  2. So MGM can match for 3 months Gold status challenge if the reset occurs on February 1 and the match is requested prior to February 1 which will cause an extension of the expiration date? Or does one wait until after February 1 to do the MGM tier challenge?

    • Got the same answer on the phone, but went for a visit to Borgata on 1/30 anyway. The MGM rep said she was able to offer me a status match challenge, but instead of 90 days, it would only be valid for one day until the year reset on 2/1. I declined as MGM is a once-in-a-lifetime match.

      I have a trip to Las Vegas next week, so I called NYNY today to see what offers are available for 2024. Apparently, there’s an issue with their tier match system, so they are not matching any statuses right now (thinking this may have something to do with the Marriott partnership). She said they were expecting more info by today, but nothing was provided. Hoping this gets fixed soon, but if anyone is in Vegas, are you able to match ICON > MGM Gold successfully?

      • Thanks for the info! It’s good to have confirmation from someone who’s been to Borgata recently. So I wonder, any time after 2/1 we can status match for 90 days? I wonder if it’s 90 days from the day you match, or if you signed up 2/10/24, you only get Feb, March, April.

        • MGM is not a one time match.. I can’t tell you how many times I have matched at borgata from when it was their black card that came with extra perks to the current MGM card. I have matched twice when it was for the full year and I just matched again for the 3 months.. I did that same the end of last year.

          They don’t only match one day, but their tier resets 2/1 so system wide everyone goes to their earned tier.

          Currently it’s good for three months from the date you match. I just matched my elite to platinum for the 4th time on Thursday 2/22

          • What I stated was “Whether or not that continues, we don’t know. Whether or not they will let you rematch again after X amount of time? We don’t know.”

            Obviously it’s always been repeatable. I do like to caution readers when appropriate and with MGM so obviously aware of the Merry Go Round (i.e. no longer taking Caesars Diamond cards), there’s always risk.

            When Borgata was not MGM and then in the early years of MGM it operated completely on its own when it came to matching (for instance the free room and play you used to get) – but they follow MGM’s directives to a T now so if MGM changes, Borgata will as well.

            FYI – in some ways Borgata has already proven to be a bit worse, with them erroneously refusing some people ICON matches recently despite it being in the matching book. And I can tell you first hand that while the old rewards desk staff could have been bantered with, if the current staff (meaning at the moment one walks up to the counter) there believes ICON doesn’t match, you’ll need to wait for a shift change because they won’t be changing their minds no matter what you show them. More likely they will get quite belligerent.

            The current policy does not exclude rematches so for now that part is safe.

          • Does this mean you can rematch after 3 months? Example. You matched to MGM gold using the qualifying card (they removed a lot of cars, especially the Hard Rock Royalty card). They give you 3 months, after the 3 months, can you rematch again? So if you want MGM gold for 12 months, you would have to rematch 4 times. Wondering if that’s allowed. I don’t want MGM gold for 3 months, looking for 12 months at least.

        • You would not likely be able to match twice in the same promo period (though I guess we don’t know for sure until someone tries), but the promo is only until June so you would not be able to get 12 months regardless.

  3. I was matched to rock royalty in December; that expires 2/29/2024 as noted, but my icon status is set to expire in 02/28/2025. Hopefully that’s the case for others as well.

  4. do i need my caesar diamond PHYSICAL card? Mine expired 1/31/23….and no plans to visit Vegas. Maybe I could find my way to another Caesars property in Tahoe or what not and match. But no plan at this moment.

    • Yes. Everywhere needs the card.. they won’t take the ap. So make sure you get your card from the rewards center, not the kiosk where it only prints regular diamond.. if you are plus or elite…

  5. Never mind — just realized I can print my card in Atlantic City! Woo hoo!

    Now…to see when I can visit Atl City…combine with something else.


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