Hyatt Card Now Awards More Points and Stays Toward Elite Status with Spending

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As was just announced by Hyatt on Milepoint, the Hyatt Credit Card will have more perks than before beginning October 1st.  This is a very good thing since while the two free nights at any Hyatt awarded as a sign-up bonus are great, the card itself was outpaced by the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card in terms of earning Hyatt points on a regular basis via daily spending.  Though the reality is that the Chase Sapphire Preferred still beats the Hyatt card for most spending… 

The changes announced are:

Cardmembers will earn 2 points for every $1 spent at restaurants, on airline tickets when purchased directly from the airline, and at car rental agencies. This is in addition to the current earning structure of 3 Hyatt Gold Passport points for every $1 spent at Hyatt properties worldwide and 1 Hyatt Gold Passport point for every $1 spent elsewhere.

Additionally, cardmembers will be able to earn and maintain Diamond status more easily by using the Hyatt Credit Card for all of their purchases as follows:

– Spend $20,000 annually and receive 2 stay / 5 night credits toward Diamond status
– Spend $40,000 annually and receive an additional 3 stay / 5 night credits (for a total of 5 stay and 10 night credits) toward Diamond status

I love Hyatt and I love Chase, but that is an awful lot of spending annually to just get a total of 2 or 5 stay credits toward the required 25 annual stays for Diamond status.  The Amex SPG cards award 2 stays/5 nights toward status without an annual spending requirement.  If you have both the personal and business SPG Amex, that is a total of 4 stays/10 nights toward status each year without a spending requirement.  The Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card card awards automatic top tier Hilton status with $40,000 in annual spending on the card.  Of course, I like top tier Hyatt status better than top tier Hilton status for my own needs, but having to spend $40,000 on the Hyatt card just to get a total of 5 stays or 10 nights toward Diamond status is interesting when compared to the other cards that are out there.  It is certainly better than nothing, but probably only helpful for those who can funnel a bunch of reimbursable expenses through the card.  While I would like to knock 5 stays annually off the 25 target, I am not in a position to put $40,000 on that card.

The 2x points for restaurants, airline tickets booked via the airline, and at car rental agencies is also an improvement over the previous 1x on the Hyatt card.  However, the Chase Sapphire Preferred earns Ultimate Reward points (that can be instantly transferred 1:1 to Hyatt, amongst others) at a rate of 2x at restaurants and on all travel expenses.  So, the Hyatt card still really only beats that card when paying for Hyatt hotels.

I’m not trying to be a “Debbie Downer”, since I am glad to see the improvements, I just want to help keep the improvements in perspective.  If you plan to apply for the Hyatt card, remember to try and make a booking at a Hyatt hotel through the Hyatt website to see if you get activate an offer for a $75 statement credit which would essentially offset the annual fee.  As has been the case for a while, that offer is only available via that method, and it is a better overall deal than just applying through my referral link of the Chase site directly.

I’m now crossing my fingers that we see some improvements to the Chase United MileagePlus card in the near future.  I was sent a survey regarding some possible improvements to that card many months ago, so I hope they are on the horizon as well.


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  1. Matches Marriotts 2X on dining/air/car rentals w/no Forex.

    Hyatt points redeem at greater value than Marriott, but I am closing in on a Marriott trip reward, so its a tossup which card I am going to use on my next two overseas trips. CSP is on my 2013 radar.

  2. @Dave, The CSP points can also be transferred to Marriott 1:1 and earn at a 2.14 rate on those categories with no forex fees, so you really should add it to your collection!

  3. New benefits are always good to hear.
    Actually, I think Hyatt is trying to match Marriott and the Chase Marriott card here.
    The Marriott card gives the 2 pts for resturant and travel like spendings.
    It also gives 1 qualifying night per $3,000 spending. Which is close to what the new hyatt card benefit is.
    As of now the benefits of these two cards are getting super close, besides the hyatt has a $10 cheaper annual fee.
    Looks like the chase hotel card group take a different point of view in rewarding status and qualifying nights/stays than that of citi and Amex

  4. @Rayn, true, and it is important to remember that the Hyatt card provides a free night annually at a category 1-4 hotel and the Amex cards do not have an equivalent benefit. I think it is a solid card to have…just still prefer my CSP for most spending.

    • @Askia, totally agree. There are great reasons to get (and even keep) the Hyatt card, but everyday spending isn’t necessarily one of them.
      @Rob, I don’t think so. It has been better for earning Hyatt points (amongst others) since it was created. Hyatt is now playing a bit of catch up.

  5. @Rob – I doubt Chase will touch the UR transfer ration. At the end of the day, as versatile the UR transfer is, there are only a few consistent worth while high end partners. Hyatt is one of them. It would be stupid for Chase to try and diminish the value of the Sapphire card.

  6. Looks like a worthwhile upgrade. Agree with you on the spend. I’d rather put the money on CSP and have the flexibility to move them around, plus the annual bonus. Nevertheless, the benefits seem worth getting/keeping the card for–Platinum membership as long as you’re a card member, two free nights, two free suite upgrade certificates if you’re already platinum when you apply (which you are if you picked up the Milepoint Premium membership a while back). And of course you can get the card with no annual fee the first year if you make a fake booking.

  7. I have a weird question regarding the two free nights. Our family (mom, dad and 4 teenagers) like to travel together. We are traveling to Tokyo next summer. Do you think we could stay ONE night and book TWO rooms (3 people each) to use up the two night freebie?

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