Earn Top Hyatt Elite Status On Award Nights For Net Cost Of -16,250 Points (Yes, Negative)

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Hyatt has reduced the qualification requirement for top tier Globalist status from 60 nights to 30 nights for 2021.

Folks who are approved for a new World of Hyatt Credit Card by December 31 get 10 elite nights both in 2020 and in 2021 (instead of the usual five). That means they need just 20 more in 2021 for Globalist status.

Earn the card’s initial bonus of up to 50,000 bonus points – 25,000 after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months and an additional 25,000 after you spend $6,000 total on purchases within the first 6 months – and you also earn 2 more elite nights, because the card earns 2 elite nights for every $5000 spend in a calendar year. That means you need just 18 more elite nights in 2021 for Globalist status.

  • Hyatt is offering double elite nights for stays in January and February

  • Award nights count

  • Hyatt is giving a 25% rebate on award nights to co-brand cardholders for stays through February

Award nights start at 5000 points for a category 1 hotel night. Book 9 category 1 hotel nights for 45,000 points for January or February stays and you’ll earn the 18 elite nights you need for top tier status. And you’ll get 11,250 points back, meaning your net cost was 33,750 points for Globalist status. But you’ll have earned 50,000 points from the initial bonus on the Hyatt card, so your net cost is -16,250 points.

Reader Michael C. asks if it then makes sense to earn another 30 elite nights with 15 more category 1 award nights in January and February? That way you earn top tier status with 60 nights, and also receive:

    5000 points or a $100 Hyatt gift card (after 40 qualifying nights)
  • 4 confirmed suite upgrades (valid on stays up to 7 nights)
  • Access to a My Hyatt Concierge
  • A Category 1-7 free night award

15 more nights, after rebate, would cost 56,250 points. The category 1-7 free night award is worth up to 30,000 points. So yes – if you believe you’ll use that free night award to full effect, then going ‘all the way’ could be worthwhile.

There’s never been a better time to earn top tier Hyatt elite status that will last for the rest of 2021 and for all of 2022. And you can do it mostly virtually, with a single check-in to one category 1 redemption hotel.

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. It makes most sense to hit the 60th QN (whether it was a result of the current promo or not) if you have a definite use (of high value) for the CAT 1-7 certificate before it expires. Normally, it expires 180 days form the date it was earned (which is the date you hit the 60th QN). However, also due to the current promo, all free night awards that either had an expiry of 2020, or were/are *earned* in 2020, will have their expiration dates extended to Dec 31st, 2021.

  2. Sorry Gary, I’m a big fan of yourself and this blog generally. With all due respect, that’s not a valuable analysis. Misleading headline at best, and just total crap analysis at worst.

  3. Gary, very good post, a few questions:
    1) If I book a category 1 hotel, I check in and check out after 9 days but actually I will never stay there (the room will look obviously unoccupied), will this work?
    2) If I book a hotel in my name adding a friend to the reservation (I never show up). Will this work?
    3) I have the old Hyatt cc; am I eligible to get the new one as well with the bonus?

  4. I have to agree with the others that the headline, and for the matter of fact also the calculation, is terrible.

    What I really came to comment about is that people should also look at the list of “New Hotels Bonus Offer” for which one could possibly receive another 500 bonus points per night. Until December 31, you have three Cat. 1 hotels with that offer in the U.S.
    1. Huntsville, AL
    2. Tuscon, AZ
    3. Flint, MI

    So with the credit card your net cost per night goes down to 3250.

  5. Headline is misleading; if you’re going to use those numbers, you need to include the requirement for a new Hyatt credit card.

  6. The card has a $95 fee, right? Should include that.

    And unless you have 45K points already in the bank, it”s hard to make this work. You’d need to have both the credit limit and the spend to put $6K on the card right away, and then wait 6-8 weeks for the bonus to post, in time to get 9 nights reserved by the end of February.

  7. Also, don’t forget about the points you earn from spending! So it should come from 55k points (at a minimum) and not 50k points.

  8. also, don’t forget covid is still raging and (international) travel for the most part is still restricted for many.

  9. Give Gary a break…it’s only a misleading headline if you genuinely thought Hyatt was handing out Globalist status plus 16 thousand points without you having to do anything, pay anything, have any points or credit cards before hand or pay any annual fees. Come on man! (said with Joe Biden angry old man voice)

  10. I agree with Rob. Some of you points enthusiast lack any sort of enthusiasm at all. And some of you lack creativity and energy. I think this article is brilliant and if one really wanted to make minimal effort and could secure the credit card, you can really make out. Nice work Gary.

  11. Brodie – so you want all of his headline to be like this: “Q Suites to South Africa plus 25,000 AA miles for only $15”

  12. Leave it to the points and miles community to strategize how to leave a hotel room empty for nine nights, while others are being evicted during a pandemic!

  13. Too Many says: Headline is misleading; if you’re going to use those numbers, you need to include the requirement for a new Hyatt credit card.

    @Too Many, he also forgot to include your phone or internet service bill, since you’ll need to pay at least one of those to reserve the room.

    I guess there’s no such thing as a free lunch after all.

  14. @Gary, for current Hyatt Card holders would this mean we get 5 elite nights in 2021, so on Jan 1 we could check in to a Cat 1 hotel for 13 nights, checking out Jan 14, then pay 5,000 * 13 * 0.75 = 48,750 points to hit Globalist? If so, are low tier properties still doing green choice?

  15. There are some great ways to play this Hyatt promo — and I’m planning on doing so — but I agree with the critics here that this headline and analysis are, um, “flawed.”

  16. Your really using the term “net” loose and fast here. A negative net # of points would imply you are earning more points than you are spending for the rooms. That isn’t true at all. Instead you bring in 50,000 points from a credit card bonus to get a negative net. I hate to have you doing financial work.

  17. It’s refreshing to see an analysis of opportunities to maximize status and rewards. That’s why we’re here, or at least why I’m here. I don’t find the headline misleading. You earn points and redeem points for a net amount. It’s simple math similar to a net worth calculation.

    @Gary, trying to establish a plan for many of us who already have the Hyatt card. Any idea when the 5 nights typically hits current cardholders’ accounts? Would you follow the strategy of checking in somewhere Jan 1 for a 13-night stay to hit Globalist? Or do something different?

  18. I made the exact calculation a couple of days ago.

    There is nothing misleading about the post.

    There isn’t room in the headline to include all of the details. Grow up.

    Unfortunately Neither myself or wife qualifies for a new card.

    The only cost is the 95 fee and the use of a chase 5/24 slot.

    Pretty cheap for almost 2 years of globalist and 16000+ points.

  19. Looks like us readers are split 50/50 on the value of this post, so clearly some are finding value. But to elaborate as you asked Gary, to me it feels similar to the following theoretical post…

    Headline: Get $600 in groceries for net cost of $0 (Yes, zero)

    Details: Sign up for the Amex Gold Card. Pay $250 annual fee (which will be ignored for purposes of this post), then spend $4,000 in 6 months and earn 60,000 MR points. Then redeem those 60,000 points as statement credit for $600 in groceries. Voila, that’s how you get $600 in groceries for free. No cost at all. It’s free. (Ignoring the fact that applying for a credit card, spending $4,000 on that credit card, and spending $250 on the annual fee do not really equate to “free” in my mind).

  20. @Matt B
    Well said!

    I’m all for a good travel deal, but counting 50k sign-up bonus when it requires $6k spend on a card with practically no benefit outside of Hyatt stays is a fairly large hoop. It also ignores the $95 fee for the card.

    Bottom line: The true ‘cost’ of this mattress run is 33,750 Hyatt points (after the 25% redemption bonus). Pretty much everyone values Hyatt points as at least 1.5cent/pt. So if you already have enough Hyatt points in your account after signing up for the card, the true cost of this opportunity is $506.25 + $95 annual fee = $601.25.

    That’s not a bad deal at all and a more honest headline of ‘Apply for Hyatt card and get Globalist status for two years and only ~$600’ would make the most sense.

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