Hyatt Awards Used to Be Capped at 15,000 Points. Now They Cost Whatever Hyatt Says.

Ten years ago the most you could spend to stay at a Hyatt was 15,000 points. There was nothing higher than category 4. However,

We went from the Park Hyatt Tokyo running 15,000 points per night in 2006 to 30,000 points per night 7 years later and during a timeframe when room rates hadn’t really gone up.

Now with the addition of Miraval to the Hyatt portfolio we’re seeing something dangerous. Hyatt has amended its terms and conditions to describe properties “not included by Hyatt (in its sole discretion) in the category 1-7 classification system.”

Up until now, 30,000 points was the most you’d have to pay for a Hyatt redemption. That meant you could still get some fantastic value at hotels during their peak season that might charge $1200 a night. The redemptions aren’t as cheap as when they topped out at 15,000 points, but they were still good.

Now Hyatt has freed themselves to charge as many points as they want and they can do so on a case by case basis without announcing any new redemption tiers. They just give the hotel a price and remove it from a tier (and in the process remove it from redemption eligibility using an earned free night that is limited to redemption at hotels in specific tiers).

For Miraval though awards start at 45,000 points and aren’t even double occupancy.

Despite the inclusions, the property isn’t even that expensive. A weekend in the fall appears to be running a bit over $700.

Once they’ve done this, it’s hard to imagine the Park Hyatt Hadahaa, Maldives remaining just 25,000 points.

When Hyatt introduced ‘World of Hyatt’ they announced top tier members would earn a free night, essentially, at any participating Hyatt property — because that free night was valid at any category 1 through 7 hotel and all hotels were categories 1 through 7.

Award pricing has now set a precedent which could take it over to the Dark Side. World of Hyatt, it seems, is a Galaxy Far Far Away from the Gold Passport we grew up with.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. With that trend, expect a Category 8 starting 2018. As long as the Category 1-4 rates don’t change in the next 5 years I’m okay.

  2. @J I’m convinced we’ll start seeing a number of US city center properties mirgrating from Cat 4 to Cat 5 as soon as this year. (Is HR Boston, where room rates are frequently $300+)

  3. not really related to this, but do i could’ve sworn that the new globalist terms state that we can get upgrades to standard suites, provided there is availability. i was told this is for cash only, and not points only stays. that’s wrong isn’t it? i’m here at the hotel now.

  4. Don’t forget the the PH Maldives was briefly a Cat 7 and they downgraded it back to Cat 6. Hardly seems likely they’ll try to go even higher…

  5. Hyatt points are now pointless. As having been a Gold Awards member and having used over 500,000 gold passport points I have now abandoned Hyatt. The earn rate is now worthless.
    Use one of the many internet booking agencies which get a discounted rate, and choose the best property in the city to be visited. You will save a heap and whilst not earning any points will have experienced new (to me) groups like Kempinski and Four Seasons.

  6. Maybe they will change it once it has been in the system for a while. The Istanbul Levant was added at a crazy level as well, but shifted to a more reasonable place (though still high) within a few months.

  7. Hyatt is the Delta of hotels. They destroyed their loyalty program and will do anything to make award redemptions more difficult. I won’t stay at any Hyatt property on a paid rate.

  8. Does anyone know if the Chase free night certificates earned through the old signup bonus also have the restrictive category 1-7 language like the World of Hyatt certificates? In other words, could you use a Chase free night certificate to book a room at the new Miraval?

  9. A lot of beefing on here concerning C7 hotels.

    Not indicative of Hyatt’s overall program, though.

    First, there is no evidence of Hyatt moving an existing Hyatt hotel from C7 to arbitrary points totals…all we know is that they added a property whose value, demand and amenities required 45k/points a night.

    As for the complaint that Hyatt points are worthless, they aren’t. Hyatt has incredible C1 and C2 points values for hundreds of hotels. I mean, try finding a C1 SPG hotel in the U.S. Hyatt has more than 100.

    I see the complaints here as pushback against rules that affect a very small segment of consumers.

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