In Depth: Hyatt’s New “Bonus Journeys” Promo Is the Best We’ve Seen In A Long Long Time!

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Hyatt Bonus Journeys Promotion
View from the Hyatt Regency Bangkok

Hyatt Bonus Journeys Promotion

Yesterday Hyatt released the details of their new Bonus Journeys promotion designed to fill hotel rooms and I have to say it has me quite excited. We covered the basics yesterday, but I thought it would be worth diving in a bit deeper to see how it all works and some of the considerations you should have before booking.

Hyatt Bonus Journeys Promotion – The Basics

Hyatt Bonus Journeys begins on October 1, 2020. During the promo members will earn 3X points at all properties worldwide, while Hyatt credit cardholders will get 4X points at select resorts. Since we don’t know the 4X hotels and because they are “resorts” let’s just focus on the 3X points.

Depending on your level of status with World of Hyatt, you’ll earn between 15 and 16.5 points per dollar on the spend. In normal times World of Hyatt pays out 5X points on hotel stays and elites get bonus points on top of that, although those bonus points are not subject to the 3X.

This is how the points earning works out:

  • Regular Member – 15X points per dollar
  • Discoverist – 15.5X points per dollar
  • Explorist – 16X points per dollar
  • Globalist – 16.5X points per dollar

That’s pretty good, but the deal gets even better if you have the World of Hyatt credit card. That card earns 4X points per dollar meaning a Globalist can potentially earn 20.5X whereas a regular member would earn 19X. With a value of around 1.5 cents per point, that is quite a return on spend!

Hyatt Regency Maui

Award Stays Are Not Left Out

If you are someone who doesn’t like to pay for your stays then Hyatt did you a favor as well. They have been running a 15-25% rebate on award stays and that has been extended until January 4, 2020. Here is how that works:

  • 15% rebate on award stays for everyone
  • 25% rebate on award stays for holders of a Hyatt credit card

With the points rebate and the incredible earnings on paid stays, it will now be important to evaluate any upcoming stays to see which gives you more value. There are times (especially now) when a higher category hotel may not make sense for an award even with the rebate. Many times cash prices are low and thus it may make sense to pay cash and earn points.

On the flip side category 1 Hyatt hotels (see example below) are only 3,750 points per night after the rebate. I could see many scenarios where it would make sense to redeem the points if cash rates were high. No matter whether you choose cash or award, Hyatt has even more goodies for you.

The Deal Is Sweetened – Double Elite Night Credits…Sort Of

Hyatt sweetened the deal even more for BOTH paid and award stays by doubling your elite night credit…..sort of. Here is how it works:

For every Tier-Qualifying Night on stays completed during the Promotion Period, members will earn one Tier-Qualifying Night credit toward elite status the year in which they earn it, and one bonus Tier-Qualifying Night credit toward elite status in 2021.

With elite status already extended you may be wondering why you would care about earning nights in 2020 & 2021, but believe me you should care! The first thing this does is extend 2021 to 15 months of qualifying. If you stay in October – December, 2020 it’s just like staying in 2021. That’s great news, but you may want to focus on 2020 as well.

Hyatt has something called Milestone Rewards which are triggered at various tiers by staying in their hotels. Members get little perks at the 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90 & 100 night levels. Utilizing this promotion you can earn nights in 2020 to trigger these rewards for this year and also build up your stays for 2021 to trigger the rewards for next year as well.

Hyatt Bonus Journeys Promotion
Grand Hyatt Baha Mar!

A Milestone Rewards Example

For example, I currently have 31 nights year to date mostly from stays early in the year and some from spend on the World of Hyatt credit card. Here are some of the tiers I could possibly reach:

  • 40 nights – 5,000 points or $100 Hyatt gift card or 10,000 point savings on a FIND experience
  • 50 nights – 2 suite upgrade awards
  • 60 nights – 2 suite upgrade awards & 1 Category 1-7 free night

I don’t quite know how far I will go in pursuing these milestones this year, but it’s important to point out that in addition to amazing savings with triple points or up to 25% off awards, I can earn more goodies through Milestone Rewards. In my case going for 40 nights is a no-brainer, although as someone who will qualify again next year, part of me is considering going for the 60 nights. That category 1-7 certificate is worth a lot plus I’d be sitting halfway to Globalist for next year even before it begins!

Also don’t forget if I pursued 60 this year I would be starting next year just one night shy (at 29 nights) of the 30 night perk of a category 1-4 free night. I would also be that much closer to the perks at 40, 50 and 60 nights for 2021!

Even More Very Good Hyatt Promos

While I know the many promotions Hyatt is running feel a little confusing and overwhelming, we have a full list in this post to help you keep it all straight. Hyatt also extended free parking on awards through January 4, 2021 and parking on eligible paid stays for Globalists through the same time as well. Other promos like discounts at Miraval, 500 points for new hotels and triple points for dining at Hyatt remain too.

Grand Hyatt Bangkok

So What Will I Get As A World of Hyatt Globalist?

As someone who has spent time and effort for years to keep top tier Hyatt status there is a lot I can get by staying at Hyatt hotels from October – December, 2020. Here is what I will get on paid and/or award stays.

  • 20.5X points earned on paid stays where I use my Hyatt credit card
  • 25% off award stays because I have the Hyatt credit card
  • Free parking on award and paid stays
  • Free breakfast for 2 adults and 2 children unless the hotel restaurant is closed
  • Potential for upgrades, late checkout, early check-in and other goodies
  • Credit for 2020 and 2021 including milestone rewards

In other words it would take a lot to keep me from staying at a Hyatt during the promo. It simply is way too rewarding compared to other chains. Hyatt found a way to make a promo that rewards members on every level. Normal members get decent perks (15% off awards, triple points on paid stays), however people with status and the credit card get even more. This is a great way of rewarding loyal customers top to bottom.

Points or Cash – An Example

While there are so many factors to consider, here is a quick sample to show you what I would look at when deciding whether to redeem points or cash pay for a stay. One of my favorite Category 1 Hyatts in the United States is Hyatt Regency Wichita. For an upcoming Saturday night it is either 5,000 points per night or $160.

Hyatt Bonus Journeys Promotion

If I pay cash and use my World of Hyatt credit card then I’ll earn 3,280 points which I value at around $49.20. Subtract that from my cost and I’m still paying about $110 per night. Conversely an award stay normally costs 5K per night, however it is only 3,750 after my rebate. The value of those points to me is about $56 meaning an award stay is MUCH better.

Of course there are quite a few hotels with low cash rates and higher categories where the math is equally as unbalanced the other way. I highly recommend making the decision about this on a case by case basis. It’s also important to factor in how many points you have and things like free parking on awards for non-Globalist members. Parking fees can add up!

I’ll also finish with this. We play this game and focus so much on this hobby because we want to save money. Yes, we do like cool perks and other stuff we discover along the way, but it is about saving money. If it makes sense to you to use points in order to save cash, then that’s fine. Make your decision within the framework of what works for you. Either way you’re getting rewarded handsomely for staying at Hyatt!

Hyatt Bonus Journeys Promotion – Bottom Line

While individually these aren’t the best hotel promos we have ever seen, when combined together they are quite powerful and rewarding. Hyatt clearly is trying hard to entice customers of all types to return to their locations and we are all winning because of it. I know some of you aren’t ready to travel yet and that’s perfectly fine, but if you are ready to enjoy hotels again then you probably should be looking really closely at Hyatt.

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7 COMMENTS

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7 COMMENTS

  1. Shawn: When staying at a resort hotel on an award stay (via point redemption), do you know if ancillary cash charges added to the folio, such as a child co-pay at a Ziva would count for the 3x points promo? (I don’t foresee any other incidental charges like spa treatments or wine). Couldn’t tell from reading about it there are any limitations on earning the 3x points. Thanks.

  2. Might also mention that this is a good promo for these uncertain times. Normally I’d much prefer one of the past promos with massive bonuses for hitting 25 or 30 nights or whatever within the bonus period. But most of us are staying home a lot right now so a bonus that hits you with something for every single stay is the best choice right now.

  3. Don’t forget that while the Hyatt Prive Buy 2 get 3 nights at select resorts ends on 9/30, it’s valid for stays through 3/2021. If you book for a stay after 10/1, you’d overlap both promos.

  4. Do we have any idea if the qualifying night for 2020 and 2021 is for nights earned through spend on the Hyatt credit card as well? Or only for actual stays at the hotel?

    • Some bad news there. The credit card nights won’t count double unfortunately. Only actual stays will count for 2020 & 2021.

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