Why I Am Keeping the Hyatt Credit Card

Please note this site has financial relationships with American Express and this post may contain affiliate links. Read my Advertiser Disclosure policy here to learn more about my partners.

Earlier today I wrote a post about the changes coming to the Hyatt co-branded credit card beginning March 1, 2017 when the World of Hyatt program officially launches. If you are interested in the Hyatt credit card, I encourage you to read that full post if you haven’t already, but the main takeaways are the that the Hyatt credit card will no longer help you achieve top tier status, but it will instead grant you automatic Discoverist status and will upgrade you to Explorist status if you spend $50,000 on the card annually.


In my summary of that post I stated that if you have top tier Globalist status under the new Hyatt program, having the co-branded Hyatt credit card is not essential, especially if you have the Sapphire Reserve which essentially exceeds its points earning potential, even on charges at Hyatt properties. I think you could probably stretch that statement further and argue that if you naturally have any Hyatt elite status level the card is probably not essential unless you can easily spend $50,000 per year on the card and otherwise would not have Explorist second tier elite status.

Why I Am Keeping the Hyatt Credit Card

However, even with all of that, I plan to keep my Hyatt credit card at least for the foreseeable future. I will not be putting $50,000 per year on the card to earn Explorist status as the opportunity cost for shifting that spending from other cards is too high, and frankly the amount is just too high for the payoff. Here are a few of the reasons I am keeping the Hyatt card, at least in the near term.

The Hyatt card still awards a Category 1-4 free night certificate each year when you pay the $75 annual fee.

I don’t have any problem putting that Category 1-4 certificate to great use at a property like the Hyatt Hill Country San Antonio during a peak summer weekend, Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress near Disney World, Hyatt Centric the Woodlands for a staycation, Grand Hyatt DFW for a hotel overnight, Andaz Papagayo in Costa Rica, Hyatt Centric South Beach, Park Hyatt Hamburg, or Hyatt Olive 8 in Seattle. There are dozens of other great choices, too. All of those hotels routinely sell during peak seasons at rates well more than the $75 annual fee the credit card charges. On points they would cost you 15,000 points per night that I personally value at more than $200.

Hyatt Olive 8 Indoor Pool

Hyatt Olive 8 Indoor Pool

There are good Hyatt cardholder specific promotions.

In 2015, Hyatt cardholders got 20% of their redeemed points back for a portion of the year. That saved my family tens of thousands of Hyatt points, and is actually what led to me finally pulling the trigger on getting the card. This year they did a similar promo that awarded 10% of the redeemed points back for several months. Even with the lower percentage, I still managed to save several thousand Hyatt points thanks to that promotion, and if they continue to do these types of things for cardholders it makes it easier to keep the Hyatt card open.

Hyatt Points Promo.jpg

For what it is worth, I would love to see something along the lines of the 10% points rebate added as a permanent benefit to the card, even if it was capped similar to how some of the American Airlines credit cards operate. While we are on the topic, there is one current Hyatt cardholder promo that awards a $50 statement credit if you spend $500 or more at U.S. Hyatt Regency Hotels and Resorts from September 27 – December 31, 2016 as long as you registered by October 31, 2016.


As long as these sort of promos keep popping up for Hyatt Chase cardholders, I am more likely to hold onto my card.

Getting new credit cards is harder than it used to be.

Even though many reports suggest that the Chase Hyatt Visa is not currently subject to the same Chase 5/24 rules as some other Chase credit cards, that doesn’t mean it will always stay that way. It also is just harder on average to get the same card multiple times than it was a few years ago, so there is an argument to holding some of your credit cards for the long term instead of constantly trading them out like you were playing Go Fish.

I wouldn’t keep the Hyatt card just for the sake of keeping it open, but if you are maximizing the Category 1-4 night and the cardholder specific promos continue, then factoring in the benefits of keeping some cards for the long term might tip the scales a little.

Some elite status is better than no elite status.

If you otherwise would not have any Hyatt status it is also better to be a Discoverist by virtue of having the card than being a than a “Nothingist” with no status at all. Even the low tier Discoverist status will give you a few perks such as 2PM late check-out, bottled water daily, preferred room within the category booked, Pearl status with MLife, and a 10% bonus on base points earned – 15% if you have the card before 3/1/17 through 2/28/18. Without the credit card it would take 10 eligible nights annually to obtain Discoverist status, so this will help those with a handful of Hyatt stays each year.

The Hyatt credit card was already in a unique position before the World of Hyatt changes were announced in that the Sapphire Reserve is a better choice for earning even at Hyatt properties than the co-branded Hyatt card. Unless you were putting $20,000 – $40,000 on the Hyatt card annually to get a little bump towards Diamond status I don’t think any of the new changes substantially hurt you, but they also didn’t really add much to make the card more valuable for people like me who aren’t going to put $50,000 on the card each year for the new second tier elite status.

I’m still holding onto it for the reasons already stated, but I can understand why it isn’t a “must keep” for everyone.

Editorial Note: The opinions expressed here are mine and not provided, reviewed, by any bank, card issuer, or other company unless otherwise stated.

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.


    • Yes, that is the standard offer. Totally a card worth getting for sure if you don’t already have it…assuming you can make use of the two nights within a year of earning them.

  1. If you have the Hyatt card, will that give you 10 nights towards the Explorist status? That is, would you need just 20 nights for Explorist? (man, these names are silly)

    • Beginning 3/1/17 that perk goes away so effectively the answer is no. Now, it can help you earn status in Jan and Feb 2017 assuming you hit the 20k/40k spending requirements in that time and hit the status level you are after via the current system in that time frame. I know some are doing that to earn Diamond very early in 2017.

    • I instagramed the only pic I took…most of our visit was over lunch at a nearby restaurant (that was in a Hyatt – of course). Because of my flight time, I was only in the HQ for maybe an hour or so all together. https://www.instagram.com/p/BMHiW9ED-7F/?taken-by=mommypoints I don’t know if I have enough interesting material for a stand alone post on the visit as most of it was getting clarification on the World of Hyatt updates and has been used in other posts, but if I can think of anything additional I’ll work it in.

  2. I agree with you. I still am weighing my options as I still get that Mlife Gold status until 2018. But not willing to spend $50K for explorist when that spend could be put on a different card to get better status with airlines or other hotels such as Ritz. Still trying to figure out if $75 is worth the Pearl status and 1 free night at Hyatt.

  3. I agree with all your reasons to keep this card. However, I still could not find a good reason to sign in for it since I don’t have it. Here are the main reasons:
    – I have to use the two nights within a year of earning them. Since Hyatt’s footprint is very small I have to plan in advance a vacation so I can maximize this once in a lifetime perk. I still could not plan a vacation to a place where there is a Hyatt worth using this perk;
    – The annual perk of a 1 night on a category 1-4 is great. However, it has to be planned. I won’t go stay at the Hyatt Place here in my town on a Saturday just for the sake of using the certificate. Again, most Hyatt properties are not present in places I go on vacation and a 1 night free does not help much unless you pay for another 1 or 2 nights.
    – The number of interesting properties in the 1-4 category has been reduced so it makes less appealing to use this certificate.

    Again, if you have it it is definitely a keeper but if you don’t I would use my 5 chances to get a Chase card with other options.

  4. Well….I am keeping the card for the free night and I will also put the 50k for the Explorist or whatever status. The free night is a no brainer you can easily get at least $150 value for a stay. Regarding the 50k, I was thinking about leaving Hyatt…being a Diamond there is no way to get to 60 night. But I start thinking….what options do I have? Do anyone checked hoy many points is needed for a Marriot or a Hilton stay??? 60000, 70000 for a hotel that I can get access for 6000 points + $75 like the Grand Hyatt Kuala Lumpur where I am writing this post now. Or the 10000 + 125 room that I got at the Grand Hyatt Singapore a few days ago…great hotels both. I got a suite upgrade in both so I will miss the suites but our most valued perk is lounge access so we will have that at least 4 times a year when we really need it…during vacations. Of course we are talking non bonus spending but for me is very easy to get 2, 3, or even more cents per Hyatt point so from those 50000 points at least I will get 2 grands in value since most of my stays are with cash plus points.

  5. As always, a thoughtful understanding of making a practical decision at least for 2017. The free night more than pays for the annual fee. While remaining a Diamond member for next year, the footprint issue makes it impossible for me to become the top tier for 2018 (I refuse to use any of the new Orwellian terms using the suffix “ist”).

  6. @ Santastico “if you have it it is definitely a keeper but if you don’t I would use my 5 chances to get a Chase card with other options.”

    Except that the Hyatt card Is one of the few that is not subject to Chase’s 5/24 rule. My wife and I just got ours quite recently, and I was at 22/24. We did not call in even though they asked us to, and we were both approved in a couple of weeks. So if some one is below 5/24, they should apply for those “other options” first, then after that they can still apply for the Hyatt.

  7. Mommy Points – If what I have written holds true – another good reason to keep your Chase Hyatt Card. I have never had the top elite status for any airline or hotel program, but I do belong to a bunch of them and seek to get the most I can while travelling. I have never had diamond status with hyatt and probably never will. However, I do have platinum status because i have the Chase Hyatt card. I stay at hyatt about 4 times a year and do not see me spending more stays than that moving forward. But i have been taking a look at the new World of Hyatt program and am wondering if under the new program I can obtain Explorist status in perpetuity. I have synch’ed my Hyatt status with my MLife status – Hyatt Platinum = MLife Gold. Under the new World of Hyatt program it will now have reciprocal status matches with MLife whereas before it did not – it went only one way – Mlife would match Hyatt. Under the new World of Hyatt program and MLife, Mlife Gold would get me Hyatt Explorist status. MLife does not reset on calendar year, but instead goes from Oct 1st to Sept 30, whereas Hyatt is calendar year. The new World of Hyatt program starts on March 1st. So I am looking at these dates and here is where i figure I can obtain Hyatt Explorist status and MLife gold status each year. My MLife gold status is good until at least Oct 1st 2017(and maybe 2018 – i just had it matched last week). On March 1st my Hyatt status under World of Hyatt should drop to Discoverist under the new World of Hyatt program, but because my MLife status is Gold I will request Hyatt status match to Explorist. On October 1st if my MLife Gold status resets to Sapphire, Ill then request status match to Hyatt which is now Explorist and should give me MLife Gold status. The Hyatt and MLife status match is NOT linked through computers, you actually have to call Mlife to get a status match to Hyatt, and you must call Hyatt to get a status match to MLife. I was told by both Hyatt and Mlife Agents that they must call the other one with account number and get your current status so they can manually match it. This will only work if you currently have the Chase Hyatt card and get the MLife status match to Gold before March 1st 2017. Am I off the mark here? I am not a big time traveler, but i do stay at hyatt and the new Explorist status offers some bennies i did not have before.

    • Wanted to give an update to my post from November. My analysis appears to be true so far. In March of this year my Hyatt status became Discoverist because I have the Chase Hyatt card. In March with my new Discoverist status, I requested a status match to MLife (which was GOLD from my Platinum match from Hyatt early last year). I received my upgraded status to Explorist last week due to the match request. An interesting comment from the Hyatt folks when I chatted with them – It was possible to receive Globalist status with your MLife match based on the number of nights you had with MLife – Interesting huh. I read Mommy Points often and i did see that your Husband was also successful at the MLife match to Explorist. I will wait now for October 1 and see if my MLife gets reset from GOLD to Sapphire and then request a match back to Hyatt to reset to GOLD.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *