The best way to use Hyatt points is one that extracts the most value for your specific travel needs. Whether you’re looking for suite upgrades, club lounge access or a free night at a resort, how you find the best value is really up to you.
The variety of ways you can use your points can be overwhelming, but we are here to help. Here are a few ways to get the most value from Hyatt points:
Nerdwallet values Hyatt points at 2.8 cents each, and using those points on hotel stays can be of great value. Hyatt currently has an eight-category system that determines the point value for your room. A standard room ranges from 3,500 points for a Category 1 hotel to 45,000 points per night at a Category 8.
While not a fully dynamic pricing model, this system is much better than other programs because it provides a chart that shows members the range of points needed for a redemption night. This allows points collectors to budget for stays in advance and be less at the whims of fluctuating prices.
Here’s how many points you’ll now need to book various rooms at a World of Hyatt hotel:
While prices may vary, Hyatt’s peak and off-peak pricing also applies to:
Miraval and participating MGM properties.
If you want to treat yourself to a nicer room or a suite upgrade (especially at aspirational Hyatt resorts), your points can come in handy.
You can use them to upgrade a cash reservation instead of using points to pay in full for the higher-priced room. For example, if you paid cash for a standard room, you could upgrade to a:
Club level room for 3,000 points per night.
Standard Suite for 6,000 points per night.
Premium suite for 9,000 points per night.
In the example above at Andaz 5th Avenue in New York, the Wellness Suite requires an additional 9,000 points per night on top of the cash rate. Unlike the standard club room or suite points redemption, these are flat rates that are not subject to off-peak or peak dates since they are in addition to the paid nightly rate at the hotel.
Keep in mind that if you have top elite status with Hyatt, you may already receive a free upgrade. For example, a Globalist member would receive access to a club lounge or free breakfast as part of their regular elite benefits, and might also be eligible for a suite upgrade.
While it is nice to guarantee a suite in advance using points, it might be wiser to take advantage of elite status perks, especially if you’re a Globalist member.
The all-inclusive properties in the World of Hyatt program are eligible for points redemption. This can represent outstanding value if you’re looking to get food, drinks and activities packed into the deal.
World of Hyatt ranks all-inclusive properties differently than other properties, using a separate award chart. Like traditional award redemption, these properties are now subject to off-peak and peak pricing. Standard rooms range from 12,000 to 58,000 points for up to two people. Adding an extra person to the reservation costs 6,500 to 29,000 additional points per person per night.
In the one-night example above at Hyatt Zilara Cancun (all-inclusive, adults only) travelers can book a standard room (labeled Junior Suite) for 25,000 points or a standard Suite for 40,000 points. Guests can also pay the cash rate and choose to upgrade using points.
Miraval Resorts have a similar off-peak, standard and peak pricing system with points redemption rates based on occupancy. For example, one person staying in a standard room on an off-peak night would pay 40,000 points for a stay.
On the plus side, this redemption includes a $175-per-person resort credit for food and activities. On the other end of the spectrum, a double-occupancy stay in a premium suite on a peak night tops out at 137,000 points per night. Each person would still receive the $175 resort credit.
All of these points can really add up, but if you’re staying at an all-inclusive resort or have earned a resort credit, you’re still saving a ton of cash on your family vacation.
World of Hyatt offers some other great redemption options for your points. While the best value always comes from finding off-peak hotel stays, some travelers may have their sights set on other opportunities. These options may bring more value to those who aren’t looking to cover room costs, or who already have those costs covered with another program.
Flights on partner airlines
If you’re close to achieving a big flight award redemption and need to top-up your account with more points, you can transfer Hyatt points to several airlines including:
The transfer ratio is 5,000 Hyatt points to 2,000 airline miles. (Generally, for every 2.5 points you convert, you’ll receive one frequent flyer mile.) This is not a great value, but it might make sense if you’re close to an airline redemption.
World of Hyatt members can also redeem points for special experiences in more than 50 destinations as part of the FIND Experiences program.
These include activities centered around your mind and body like:
Learning to trim Bonsai trees.
Practicing Muay Thai boxing with an expert.
Due to COVID-19, Hyatt has temporarily suspended operation of FIND experiences. However, it’s a good idea to keep an eye on the program’s status; you never know when it might be back, with an experience that’s just right for you.
You can also redeem points through the program for Lindblad Expeditions cruises, which can be quite pricey. Lindblad Expeditions is an adventure travel company that specializes in high-end cruises and land expeditions.
These luxury experiences come with luxury price tags, so these redemptions are best reserved for those points collectors who have large sums of points.
Final thoughts on maximizing Hyatt points
No matter how you choose to redeem your Hyatt points, you can extract tremendous value from them. If a Hyatt-branded credit card is in your pocket, you can earn them even faster.
What you choose to use your points on will depend on your personal needs, but the best value usually comes from redeeming points for an off-peak hotel stay. The bottom line is that Hyatt points can get you far if you know how to use them to your own maximum benefit.
Featured photo courtesy of Andaz Scottsdale.
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