Hyatt Devalued Redemptions at 16 Properties Without Notice: Here’s What Happened

Hyatt used to let you book a ‘studio’ room at their Hyatt Residence Club (timeshare) properties for 12,000 points per night — flat — regardless of property. The price was the same regardless of property and had remained fixed this way for many years. Higher level rooms were available at fixed prices as well. This was as follows:

  • Studio: 12,000 points
  • 1 Bedroom: 15,000 points
  • 2 Bedroom: 23,000 points
  • 3 Bedroom: 30,000 points

They’re timeshares, not hotel properties, and they aren’t subject to normal award availability rules.


The Residences at Park Hyatt Beaver Creek, credit: Hyatt

When Hyatt made changes to award prices at several hotels August 1 they also made changes to the redemption structure for Hyatt Residence Club properties. Only they didn’t announce those changes in advance.

Apparently what happened is:

  1. Hyatt eliminated the Residence Club award chart.
  2. They assigned each Residence Club property to a regular Hyatt Gold Passport Redemption level.
  3. And they forgot to tell anyone.

What’s more, by putting each property on the regular redemption chart there’s just two options — a standard room and a suite. You no longer have explicit choices for 2 or 3 bedrooms. Each property can choose what room to assign as a ‘suite’ redemption (e.g. they might designate a 2 bedroom as a suite and leave 3 bedrooms ineligible for redemption).

It’s a huge devaluation, albeit a reasonable one considering the points price of Residence Club properties haven’t changed in about a decade and some properties were going for about half what they ‘should have’ based on rates and quality.

These awards were great value (especially for families), at least when you could find availability, but since they applied to such a limited set of hotels they were easy to forget about.

Here’s the list of properties and their new award category/price:

Residence Club Award Category Standard Point Requirement Suite Point Requirement
Hyatt Pinon Pointe, a Hyatt Residence Club 4 15,000 24,000
Hyatt Hacienda del Mar, a Hyatt Residence Club 4 15,000 24,000
Hyatt Sunset Harbor, a Hyatt Residence Club 5 20,000 32,000
Hyatt Coconut Plantation, a Hyatt Residence Club 5 20,000 32,000
Hyatt Wild Oak Ranch, a Hyatt Residence Club 5 20,000 32,000
Hyatt Mountain Lodge, a Hyatt Residence Club 6 25,000 40,000
Hyatt Main Street Station, a Hyatt Residence Club 6 25,000 40,000
Hyatt Beach House, a Hyatt Residence Club 6 25,000 40,000
Northstar Lodge, a Hyatt Residence Club 6 25,000 40,000
Hyatt Windward Pointe, a Hyatt Residence Club 6 25,000 40,000
Grand Hyatt Aspen, a Hyatt Residence Club 7 30,000 48,000
The Residences at Park Hyatt Beaver Creek, a Hyatt Residence Club 7 30,000 48,000
Hyatt Siesta Key Beach, a Hyatt Residence Club 7 30,000 48,000
Hyatt Carmel Highlands, a Hyatt Residence Club 7 30,000 48,000
Maui Ka’anapali Beach 7 30,000 48,000
Hyatt High Sierra Lodge, a Hyatt Residence Club 7 30,000 48,000

Ultimately though when a program announces changes, we should be able to assume the changes being announced are in fact all the changes.

I shouldn’t need to run down a list of all of a program’s features and ask whether or not those are changing, too. Diamond suite upgrades? Cash and points prices? Is base points-earning still 5 points per dollar? I think I’m going to have to build that sort of checklist and email it as an attachment next time I get notice about upcoming changes.

And when a program realizes it meant to give notice about some changes but forgot, they have two choices:

  1. Shrug shoulders and do what they had intended to do anyway.

  2. Stop. Give notice. Let members have the month you intended to give them.

In this case I think Hyatt chose poorly between these two options.

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. Gary –

    As you constantly remind, unannounced changes destroy loyalty. And the whole attitude they are showing of not allowing at least a short booking window has sure upset me. Until now, Hyatt has always been up front about changes in recent years, and when they have made a misstep, they’ve usually made it right. Hope this isn’t an indication of the Delta-izing of Hyatt. No Freddie vote from me this year.

  2. I have never understood why you make a big deal when changes are made “Without Notice” as businesses constantly change prices whenever costs or demand changes. Not sure why you think points program must be any different.

  3. You cannot use points the same way as cash. You can only use points for what programs say you can at the prices they set. They offer a value proposition and a price change without notice is like Lucy Charlie Brown and the Football. It’s bait and switch. Unless the program declares “here are our points and they don’t actually have any particular promised value” but that’s not usually how companies market their programs.

    Cash on the other hand you can use at Hyatt or Marriott or Amazon.com or CVS. If Hyatt raises their prices I can take my cash elsewhere.

    A loyalty program is a promise of future value for purchasing behavior today. Changes without notice renege on that deal.

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