Through May 11 Get a Bigger Signup Bonus from the Hyatt Visa

The Hyatt Visa has a pretty good signup bonus, I used it recently on my trip to Singapore and the Maldives — Base members receive 2 free nights at any Hyatt in the world as a signup bonus, for use within a year. That means the Park Hyatt Paris, in the Maldives, or Sydney are all possibles.

The card comes with a $75 fee, but this link which I found advertised on the Hyatt website offers a $75 statement credit after first purchase, effectively making it first year free.

And the signup bonus is actually better than it appears at first blush. Existing Platinums get 2 free nights at any Hyatt in the world and two confirmed suite upgrades valid on paid stays. And through May 11, anyone can be a Platinum, instantly. Just enter any Visa Signature credit card number on this page to upgrade your Hyatt Gold Passport status for 90 days.

The card itself comes with Hyatt Platinum status, but by giving yourself Platinum status and then applying for the card you get the 2 confirmed suite upgrades in addition to the two free nights. (Platinum is largely good for free internet, and avoiding a hotel’s worst rooms.)

Existing Diamond members get 2 free nights in a suite as their signup bonus. That’s why I got the card, largely.

I was thinking about cancelling the card, but Hyatt added an annual bonus that changed my mind. They give out an annual free night valid on any hotel up to category 4 (out of 6 reward categories). That’s somewhat limited but still very useful, I was just credited with my annual free night and will use it at the Hyatt 48Lex in New York, likely on a night where rates are over $500. And that will make it worth the $75 annual fee to keep.

Currently I really only use the card when staying at a Hyatt, it earns 3 points per dollar on Hyatt stays. I really do prefer my Chase Sapphire Preferred card most of the time, and am on the fence whether it’s better to use the Sapphire Preferred card even on Hyatt stays — it earns 2 points per dollar on hotel spend, which also earns the 7% annual bonus, and the points convert to United (as well as other loyalty programs). So do I want 2 United miles or 3 Hyatt points when paying for my Hyatt stays? I default to the Hyatt Visa but it’s at least close.

There are lots of rumblings about big improvements in the Hyatt Visa coming down the pike. But for now it’s a great card for the signup bonus, especially if you plan to use the free nights at Hyatt’s higher-end properties. (The card doesn’t make my ‘top 10’ list of signup bonuses because the value of the free nights really depends on where you’ll use them, something that’s true for all bonuses but with points there’s more flexibility and no requirement to use them within a year.)

And of course the card also has no foreign currency transaction fees, much like Sapphire Preferred, so of real value to international travelers.

Now, probably not the best signup bonus out there for many folks, if you want 2 free Hyatt nights then 40,000 points from Sapphire Preferred translates into almost enough for 2 nights anywhere in the world and points transfer instantly to Hyatt for free.

But if you want two free confirmed suite upgrades in addition to the free nights, there’s about a 3 week window in which to grab that.

(Note that this card offer does not offer any referral credit to me. The best available offer I have excludes the $75 statement credit, so best to use the one that will put $75 more in your pocket.)

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, 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,

    Can you use the award nights and/or upgrade certs at the Park Hyatt Maldives?


  2. If they add a 2x multiplier, it would be a huge disappointment to see them offer 2x on other travel related expenses. This card needs point multipliers that the Sapphire Preferred does not cover.

  3. Do u know if this is considered a “new” Hyatt product from Chase & am I likely to get the bonus if I’ve had the Hyatt card b4 (& received 2 free night certs), but cancelled it in Jan 2012?

    Thnx for a great blog!

  4. @Cdiddy you can use the free nights at the Park Hyatt Maldives, but not the suite upgrades since all the rooms are already considered suites

  5. I recently got the Chase Hyatt Visa but didn’t know about the $75 statement credit offer. So I contacted Chase over SM to see if they’d honor the new deal with the statement credit. They said this offer was only available if you had made a Hyatt reservation the same day you had gotten the card. I don’t see that anywhere on this ad. Anyone had luck with getting them to honor the new deal?

  6. I am honeymooning in October and would it if the (future) wife and I could both get the card, get 4 free nights, and then upgrade 4 other nights with the confirmed suites bonus.

    My question: do you have to be Platinum at the time you use the confirmed upgrades, since our 90 day Platinum trials will be over in October?

  7. I got the 2 nights plus a $50 credit. I phoned Hyatt to check award night availability, expressing my intent to apply for the card.

    The agent made me a placeholder reservation, to be replaced later with the 2-night award. Then she told me that I could apply by phone and get the 2 nights plus a $50 credit on first use. She transferred me and I did the application by phone.

  8. So if I and my better half both sign up, can we pool our 4 nights? Also, can a suite upgrade be used on a free night? Lastly, how long do we have to use the suite upgrade/free nights? Planning on a nice trip somewhere like Hyatt Paris Vendome or Maldives…

  9. Once you apply and get the free nights / upgrades, do they expire ever? Not sure when I’d be able to use them.

  10. @Thomas my wife was told the same about the $75 statement credit, but she had made a reservation when she applied for the card. once she provided the hotel info so they could confirm it, they applied the $75 statement credit. i don’t think the link with the $75 credit is the offer you get by clicking through the offer on

  11. yup, same experience as Thomas. You can’t get the credit unless you made a reservation at a Hyatt.

  12. @Thomas, initially my partner got the same response. Once we replied with a link to the “correct” version of the credit card sign up (that included the statement credit), then they came back with “we will credit the $75 in the next one or two statements”. So definitely try secure messaging them again, it worked for us.

  13. @Brian you can certainly make a 4 night reservation as two separate 2-night reservations, just let the hotel know so they don’t make you check out/back in. You cannot use a suite upgrade on a free night.

  14. @Adam Once you get the card, it comes with Plat status anyway. So you will still be Plat next October. Assuming you don’t cancel the card before then, of course….

  15. @Gary @Robert Thanks for the response. I realized that Platinum comes with the card after I wrote this. Doh!

    What about matching to Diamond at the time of our honeymoon? Would the two free nights work the same if you are Diamond at the time of the stay itself or do you have to be Diamond when you apply for the card?

  16. @Adam You might be able to turn the free nights into suites if you call in when you are diamond later. However, it’s probably a lot easier to already be diamond when you apply, since it will work automatically.

  17. First, enjoyed your story in Chris Guillebeau’s book The $100 Startup. Got an advanced copy.

    Question..I read Hyatt has a diamond status challenge. I am a Hilton Diamond member. If I ask to be upgraded to the Hyatt Diamond challenge (if it’s still available), wait for the change and then apply for the Hyatt credit card, do you think I’ll get 2 Award Nights in a Suite?

  18. You really need to talk to the Hyatt folks and get them to give us some love up here in Canada! None of these promos work for us.

  19. Any idea if free nights can be combined with the Free Time (FRTIME, fourth night free) offer? Meaning, book 4 nights, use 2 free nights from CC signup AND get the fourth night free? Unlikely, but does anyone know for sure?

  20. Gary… Do you know how the current Hyatt promotion would work by applying for the card at this time? I’ve earned 44,000 points by staying 16 nights during the promotion. If I apply for the card before the promotion ends (4/30/12), will I get the additional 11,000 points for being a Hyatt Visa cardholder even though I’ve already completed all my stays?

  21. I wish you could use the free cat 1 to 4 cert on cat 5/6 hotels and just pay the point difference. That would make the annual retention bonus worth it to me.

  22. Gary- yes, the link to $75 credit back is indeed now working for me, and yes, Hyatt site already shows me at Platinum, thanks!

    Now I have to really think hard if I am reallygoing to burn a chase ap for this card….

  23. What if you don.t have a visa signature card alteady? Can you apply then use that number for the status extra suite upgrades?

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