Last year my husband and I decided to take a “divide and conquer” approach to hotel elite status, and I earned Hyatt Diamond status while he focused on top tier Starwood Platinum status.  That way when we vacation together we can leverage each others status levels to get perks in both programs.  The year before that he had both Hyatt Diamond and Starwood Platinum status that he had earned via a challenge.  He simply didn’t have enough trips away from home to re-earn top status in both programs (which is a good thing as he is gone quite enough), so we went for SPG over Hyatt for him to avoid duplicating status within the family.  On paper, it sounded pretty perfect given our traveling situation.  The reality was a little different.

Losing Hyatt Diamond:

When his Hyatt status officially dropped from Diamond to mid-tier Platinum in February of this year he wasn’t thrilled.  He missed the club access, the breakfasts, the confirmed (and surprise) suite upgrades, and I missed the extra points he used to earn as a Diamond.  He travels for work more weeks than not, so not having access to hotel perks he had previously enjoyed was a tad annoying for him, to say the least.  Work travel is draining enough without making it less comfortable than it could be.

So, he did what any reasonable person would do and simply decided to earn it back one stay at a time.  There is also a Hyatt Diamond Challenge where you are given Hyatt status and to keep it you need 12 eligible nights in a 60 day period, but he didn’t have 12 nights in a 60 day period planned, so it was easier to just earn it back the old fashioned way.

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No Hyatt Diamond, no suite upgrade certificates

Earning it back one stay at a time:

One work trip at a time he ticked off the needed Hyatt stays until hitting the magic number of 25 stays in a calendar year this week.  It almost seems like you should get some balloons or something when you hit that magic 25 stays number, but we’ll settle for just knowing it is done.  If you have gotten on the travel elite status hamster wheel then you know that feeling of relief when you have hit the number needed to secure status for another year.  In addition to him simply missing the perks of Hyatt Diamond, this also made sense as I may not re-qualify for Hyatt Diamond this year thanks to generally traveling a little less, not having all my stays grouped at a Hyatt, and staying on points a little more.  Though it does help that cash and points stays count toward status with Hyatt!

Hyatt Diamond

Now that he has just about requalified for Diamond he will get the four confirmed suite upgrades, the food/beverage or 1,000 point amenity each stay (500 at Hyatt House and Hyatt Place), access to the “Diamond phone line”, and a 30% points bonus on earned base points instead of the 15% he has been getting as a Platinum.  The huge value for us with Diamond status is the lounge access, breakfasts, and suite upgrades as they have tangible value and help make our vacations (and his work trips) more comfortable.  Getting elite status is a way to make his required work trips work a little harder for our traveling family!

No free club access without Hyatt Diamond

No free club access without Hyatt Diamond

Don’t know how sweet Diamond is until you lose it:

I can sit here and tell you how we enjoyed the perks of hotel elite status, but like most things in life, it is when you no longer get the perks that you realize how much you enjoyed them in the first place!  We now know for certain how much we enjoy having Hyatt Diamond status specifically, and I would bet that my husband won’t lose it again in any near future unless his work travel patterns change dramatically.  Many other hotel elite status levels wouldn’t be missed quite as much as Hyatt Diamond since the perks many other programs provide aren’t as comprehensive or consistent.

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No free evening drink in the Maldives without Hyatt Diamond

Now the biggest question remaining is whether he will requalify for SPG Platinum by the end of the year or not.  With only 4 stays completed, he is very much off the pace of 25 stays within the calendar year for SPG, but we’ll see what happens between now and the end of the year.  With SPG both cash + points and pure points award nights count toward status, so that helps get to 25 a bit faster.  Receiving two stay credits with both the personal and business versions of the Starwood Amex also helps get to 25 stays.

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No free room service breakfast without Hyatt Diamond

The first eight months of this year reaffirmed how valuable Hyatt Diamond status is for us, how long it can take to get to 25 stays, how spoiled accustomed to hotel perks you can quickly get, and how our “divide and conquer” approach has some real flaws in it given how often my husband travels without us for work.

How is your hotel elite quest going this year?  Is your strategy playing out the way you hoped?

 

 

Posted by Mommy Points | 20 Comments

20 Responses to “Obtaining Hyatt Diamond Status One Stay at a Time”

  1. JL100 says:

    Since we don’t have a company reimbursing us for stays, we are going for as many stays on points as we can (mostly Hyatt). The platinum status with the Chase card is nice and that is working for us. When we want a suite, I have paid the full Hyatt rate and upgraded with 6k points.

  2. Joey says:

    Is it possible to do the hyatt diamond challenge more than once?

      • Joey says:

        Thx. Mommypoints mentioned earlier that her husband had been a Hyatt Diamond in the past through the challenge. So when she then mentioned later in the post about her husband not having any 12 stays planned at any Hyatt property at a period of 60 days, it was implied that he could do the Hyatt Diamond challenge again.

        • Mommy Points says:

          I think it was just confusingly written. He got SPG Plat via a challenge. I think he had earned Hyatt Diamond via 25 stays (at least I’m 99% sure that is how it happened). Either way I have heard mixed reports on whether you can get a second Hyatt challenge. I would certainly not expect it, but it has happened for some.

    • Aarash says:

      The answer is….sort of. While technically you can’t do the same challenge more than once, if you have done it before under a different promo code, and a new (or newer) challenge promo code has come out you can generally reapply to do the challenge.

      I did the Dia Challenge about 2 years ago and wasn’t able to complete it. I called GP a few weeks ago and the rep explained this to me…then promptly re-enrolled me in a new challenge. Good Luck :-)

      • Mommy Points says:

        Not completing it might come into play as well…I have read it is a once per account thing, but I have also heard of success stories of folks having more than one challenge so YMMV

  3. Santastico says:

    What frustrates me with Hyatt is that they don’t have enough properties. I usually travel quite a bit in the US for work but stay mainly in small to medium cities and Hyatt is almost never around. Thus, it is almost impossible for em to get 25 stays or 50 nights with them. Also, would like to get your opinion on why they give preference for people that stay more times than more nights with them to achieve the status earlier. For example, if I have 25 different stays or 25 consecutive nights I will be paying them the same amount of money. Thus, why “penalize” who stays more nights?

    • Joey says:

      I think for the average Hyatt customer, a stay is 2 nights (hence the 50 night requirement or 25 stays.) I think it’s mainly us miles/points folks who stay at a property one night, stay at another the next day, and then back to the same hotel the 3rd day and so forth just to get the X number of stays fulfilled.

  4. clayd333 says:

    SPG is so much easier for me because 1) you get 10 nights for the 2 cards. 2) you get credit for up to 3 rooms/night. and 3 you get credit for award stays..

  5. FatCat says:

    I lost Hyatt Diamond this year but did a Hyatt Diamond upgrade in February before I lost my status. I was pleasantly surprised that my future booking in July when I checked in as a Platinum they honored Diamond benefits all but the 1000 point bonus.

    I got breakfast for 4 (2 kids 2 adults) and 4pm check out.
    (Leaving property name out on purpose)

    But I am happy to say I am on 44/50 nights this year to re-qualify for Diamond the hard way.

    Does anyone know if when they view your status if they can tell if you are earned diamond or matched diamond? And if this perhaps has anything to do with a “surprise upgrade” I have heard of different levels of Diamond Elite that are not seen on line.

  6. Sarah says:

    Hi, I was wondering if you husband checked in and out each night to get to the 25 nights or were some of the stays multiple nights? My husband often travels for work for 3 or 4 nights at a time so they each just count as one stay which is a bummer. Would love any tips you have to reach status faster!

    • Mommy Points says:

      Sarah, he has lots of one night trips, but on the occasion he has two night trips he usually hops between Hyatts.

  7. tommy777 says:

    Life without status sucks, but I just seem to find that Hyatt high when traveling for work.

    A typical stay was the one I had last Thursday. HR Santa Clara, suites available, but not given as it’s not a part of the Diamond perk, so I just got a regular room with adjoining doors mind you. No free water in the room (An Aquafina on the “club level” was 4 dollars a bottle meaning I have to trek down to the 1st floor to the club to get free water. Left too early so the lounge wasn’t even open (lounge opened at 630AM), but work pays for breakfast anyway and it’s better at Starbucks.

    Ss a Diamond, I pretty much got 1000 points and free internet, which sucked so I just used the LTE hotspot on my phone.

    Diamond status did absolutely nothing for me, except a long walk to the club for free water and this is how all Hyatt business stays are for me. No upgrade, no water and no real perks.

    The sweet spot is of course the vacation stays I have when I pay my own way. On those trips, I value Hyatt Diamond pretty high up there, but upgrades are not valid on award stays, so I usually spend a lot more than I should to get that suite.

    SPG is imho the best program. Upgraded over 80% of the stays without using suite upgrades, pretty much every business stay I get upgraded and water is always free in your room. Our last vacation stays we’ve gotten amazing upgrades and never been in a regular room.

    Of course YMMV, but I’d dread losing SPG Plat a lot more than Hyatt Diamond.

    • TM says:

      were the SPG upgrade to suites?

      • tommy777 says:

        Yes. I’ve used all my confirmed suite upgrades with SPG, but in addition, I’ve received upgrades to some really aspiring suites in the last year:

        — St Regis suite at the St. Clemente, cash and points (no upgrade applied)
        — Ocean front villa at the St. Regis Bali, redemption
        — Westin Florence, junior suite, but rejected as I had the river view corner room which goes for 900 bucks already confirmed. All the smaller suites has city view
        — Imperial room, which includes butler at the St. Regis Rome. Size of a junior suite
        — Hotel Imperial Vienna – Elizabeth suite. Great recognition of Plats, including Champagne breakfast

        Meat & Potato suite upgrades on business trips

        — Westin Bellevue
        — Sheraton Frankfurt Airport
        — Sheraton Brussels
        — Sheraton AMS airport
        — Sheraton BRU airport
        — Hotel Kamp got an awesome name suite with library.
        — Sheraton Stockholm, always gotten a castle view one bedroom suite, stay there 3-4 times a year

        Just some samples of this years recognition

        If I have not used a Diamond confirmed suite upgrade, I have not gotten an upgrade in 3 years.

        • Mommy Points says:

          I think what Hyatt/SPG hotels you are visiting for work must come into play. Josh has never had a SPG upgrade on a work trip – primarily I bet because the two SPG hotels he stays at the most for work don’t have many suites. I think one of them has none and the other I think has one or two. We have gotten a couple nice SPG upgrades on leisure trips, but honestly not very many of those either.

          With kids on leisure trips I need to know if we will have more space or not, so leaving that to chance just doesn’t work when traveling with more than just the two of us, so Hyatt gets the huge edge there since you can confirm in advance. With SPG to confirm in advance I have to pay up.

  8. Rob P says:

    Hyatt Diamond looks awesome!

  9. Christina says:

    When my husband is travelling with a co-worker and they are both in separate room at SPG property, my husband (who pays for both rooms) receives credits for 2 nights.

    He’s just about to travel next week and will be staying at a Hyatt for the first time. If he pays for his co-workers room and adds his Hyatt number to the account, does he get credits for 2 nights? Similar to SPG? If so, does this count towards the Diamond Challenge – if so, they can easily hit 12 nights between the two of them.

    Help? Thanks.

    • Jamie says:

      Christina – the answer is unfortunately, no. Your husband would get points for the second room, but not a stay credit.
      Someone did a nice writeup of the ways you can earn with the different chains when you are booking multiple rooms, but unfortunately I don’t remember who it was.

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