Hyatt Regency San Francisco Offers Free Night Awards Again, Can We Win Over Andaz Maui Too?

The Hyatt Regency San Francisco has been a long-time, repeat scofflaw of Hyatt’s loyalty program. They have played games to avoid offering rooms to program members for points. However they are once again making award nights available.

Back in 2015 their strategy was to only make standard rooms available as part of ‘packages’ (such as with breakfast or parking included) and thus those rooms were not available for points stays. I pushed and got that fixed, but it’s a game of whack-a-mole and they were back to their old tricks.

hyatt regency san francisco
Hyatt Regency San Francisco Lobby

Right before the New Year I wrote about the property turning hallways into 185 square foot rooms I suggested you needn’t worry about getting one of these rooms on an award stay because you won’t find nights where awards are available here.

Their play had shifted so that they only offered their 1 King and 2 Double room types (standard rooms) on advance purchase rates and not at the ‘standard rate’ and award availability is based on the standard rate.

Hyatt didn’t take kindly to the hotel’s strategy I had flagged. They let me know right away they were working to correct it. And they’ve now let me know they’ve “resolved this issue with Hyatt Regency San Francisco. Standard room free night award inventory is available for the standard rate.” And indeed that’s true.

Pushing my luck perhaps I’ve asked whether they might be able to use these same ninja skills with the Andaz Maui? It is possible to book award nights at the Andaz Maui, at least as long as your stay is exactly three nights.

It’s perfectly permissible for a hotel to impose minimum stay requirements on their standard rooms. However,

  • They’ve carved out the “380-420 sq ft” 1 King / 2 Queen room as a room category that they do not even sell at the Member Rate.

  • Instead the standard room is available at the standard rate only. In other words, they have a room type that is available more or less only for awards.

  • And they’ve imposed a 3 night minimum (and perhaps maximum) on the room type.

  • Moreover it appears to be identical to the “380 – 420 sq ft” 1 King Resort View / 2 Queen Resort View.

andaz maui entrance
Entrance at the Andaz Maui

Hopefully this isn’t kosher, along the lines of what the Hyatt Regency San Francisco had been doing (and thus solvable) rather than being technically compliant, another property to successfully find a loophole like the Hyatt Centric Waikiki and Andaz West Hollywood?

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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Comments

  1. @ Gary — Good job, Gary! The HR isn’t my preferred SF Hyatt (GH is), but hotels shouldn’t be allowed to get away with these shenanigans.

  2. Nice job Gary!

    Ready for some testimonials now about how bad UA has effed up the Plus Points implementation? Skipped due to insufficient credits, not on the waitlist, double points pulled, etc. Please tell this story. Need you and Matthew and Ben and anyone else too.

    UA is refusing to address it even though they know it’s a CF.

  3. Can you work on the Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills? The standard award rooms are hearing/mobility accessible and the hotel seems to be playing games with the availability.

  4. The only problem with this now is no one wants to visit the disgusting city of San Francisco any longer. It truly has turned into a nasty place to go into, the city not the hotel.

  5. I didn’t seem to have any problem booking free nights at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco. I actually just stayed there in mid December about a week before your post. I was able to find the availability for several days checking monthly between July and December (dates had to change). Stayed in a King Bed on the 14th floor.

    Good to know Hyatt will at least remedy those issues. I have seen that happen multiple times with Marriott and they let the hotels dictate it even though you could book a standard with cash and not points.

  6. Andaz Waikiki does same shady thing on award nights with 3 night minimum award nights. Can you fix this too please?

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