Grand Hyatt Vail, Colorado

A couple of days ago Hyatt announced an excellent new promo offering up to 25% back on awards, free parking, and triple points for Hyatt dining.  The 25% rebate, in particular, has me intrigued.  It applies not just to free night awards, but also other awards such as Hyatt’s Dining, Spa, and More awards; FIND experiences; Lindblad Expeditions; etc.

This deal has me thinking about lots of things:

  • Are any of the awards other than free nights worth considering given the rebate?
  • Is it worth signing up now for the Hyatt card if you don’t already have it?
  • For those seeking elite status, is it worth doing mattress runs?
  • Does this promo make the previously over-expensive Miraval resorts worth booking?
  • Given the limits to practical and safe travel during COVID-19 times, will I really be able to take advantage of this deal at all?

Hyatt Promo Details

The following applies to awards completed by October 8, 2020:

  • Points Rebate
    • All members – get 15% of your redeemed points back as bonus points.
    • Hyatt & World of Hyatt credit cardholders – get 25% of your redeemed points back as bonus points.
  • Free Parking
    • Get free parking on award stays where it can be charged to your room.
  • Dining Bonus
    • Earn triple base points per dollar spent on dining at Hyatt properties.
  • Direct link to registration.

Full details can be found here.

Which awards are worth pursuing?

Hyatt’s free night awards typically offer an average of 1.5 cents per point value.  A typical award, for example, might be 20,000 points for a night that would have cost $300.  In practice, it’s possible to get far better or far worse value.  Still, we can look at this mid-point to estimate how much better value you may get after a 15% or 25% rebate.

Other types of awards are easier to evaluate since they are fixed compared to cash prices.  The following table shows a few award types and how point values change with the promo:

As you can see above (but only if you view this post online), those with a Hyatt credit card can get around 2 cents per point value with either free night awards or “Dining, Spa & More” awards.  Find Experiences, which usually offer 1.4 cents per point value, now offer up to 1.87 cents per point value.

I haven’t had much luck finding desirable Find experiences.  So, personally, I’m most interested in the other two options.

“Dining, Spa & More” awards are where you use points for things other than free nights at participating properties.  You don’t have to be a guest at the hotel to use points in this way. To get top value for your points, though, you have to offset $1,000 in charges with points all at once.  I can’t imagine a scenario where I’ll spend that much money at a Hyatt between now and October 8th.

All three of the above award types offer the potential for solid value from your points.  In my case, though, only free night awards are relevant.

World of Hyatt Card

Hyatt’s FAQ says that those who signup for the card during the promo can qualify for the 25% rebate (but make sure not to register for the promo until after you have the card):

12. If I become a World of Hyatt Credit Cardmember during the promotion, am I eligible for the additional 10% Bonus Points?

New World of Hyatt Credit Cardmembers are able to take advantage of this promotion as long as they sign up and are approved for the World of Hyatt Credit Card, and then register for the promotion by September 30, 2020. The additional 10% Bonus Points will only be applied for redemptions when the cardmember’s redemption stay is completed between July 8 and October 8, 2020.

Whether or not this promo tips the scale on signing up for the World of Hyatt credit card depends on how many points you are likely to redeem during the promo period.  If you think you’ll only redeem 15,000 points then you’ll get back only an additional 1,500 points as a credit card holder.  However, if you think you’ll redeem hundreds of thousands of points, the extra 10% rebate for Hyatt credit card holders will quickly become significant.

Pursuing Elite Status

Hyatt’s top-tier Globalist status is awesome, but it requires earning 60 elite nights each year to earn and maintain that status.  Fortunately, along the way, they offer Milestone Awards which reward you for reaching every 10 elite nights starting with 20.  In a previous post, I conservatively estimated the value of these Milestone Awards from the perspective of how much one might be willing to pay for them (see this post for details):

With the combination of the new Hyatt promo and a Hyatt credit card, it’s now possible to book category 1 Hyatt award nights for as few as 3,750 points per night (after the 25% rebate).  If you have a category 1 Hyatt nearby, is it worth booking just for the elite nights?

Assuming you believe my “what I’d pay for Milestone Awards” chart, above, it’s possible to calculate the value per point for…

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