5 reasons why Hyatt needs a cobranded business card
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Hyatt launched its first-ever cobranded credit card with Chase in 2010 through its previous loyalty program known as Hyatt Gold Passport. More than a decade later (and a refresh to what we now know as the World of Hyatt program), the World of Hyatt Credit Card is still its only option on the market that’s currently available to new applicants.
While it’s a very good card, Hyatt should really offer a cobranded business card to complement its personal card — here’s why.
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People love Hyatt — so give them more Hyatt to love
Although Hyatt is smaller than some of the other major hotel chains out there, World of Hyatt Hyatt has quickly become a fan favorite. In the 2020 TPG Awards, World of Hyatt won the Innovation in Hotel Loyalty award thanks to consumer-friendly changes that went into effect throughout the pandemic. From slashed elite status qualifications to bonus point opportunities to a new work-from-hotel program, there have been ways to add to your Hyatt points balance even if you haven’t been traveling to 2019 levels.
Straightforward redemptions are also a major selling point of the program. You can redeem your hard-earned points for five-star properties in much smaller denominations than the cost that Hilton or Marriott would charge you for comparable properties. While Hyatt will add off-peak and peak pricing in October 2021, award rates will still be more reasonable than other hotel loyalty programs.
For these reasons, my Hyatt loyalty continues to grow. While Hyatt properties aren’t as ubiquitous as other brands internationally, Hyatt’s initiatives, such as partnering with Small Luxury Hotels of the World to allow World of Hyatt members to earn and redeem points at certain SLH properties, and the acquisition Apple Leisure Group, bring some of the most elegant (and unique) hotel options worldwide. I’ve stayed in a few on my international travels and have loved the amenities, from free upgrades (on availability) to daily breakfast for two.
As the brand expands its footprint, a cobranded business credit card could be a way to bring even more travelers to the World of Hyatt program. The personal World of Hyatt card does a decent job of rewarding various everyday purchases. However, a Hyatt business card could allow some folks to double up on earning with new, business-centered bonus categories such as shipping and telecommunications. There’s even potential to offer benefits specific for business cardholders, tapping into a market that’s looking for an all-new sign-up bonus and benefits that will keep them returning to Hyatt.
It’s all about domestic travel right now
Even though many countries have reopened borders to travelers this summer, domestic travel is all the rage for many reasons. For example, international travel is made much more complicated with families with unvaccinated children, the threat of quarantine if testing positive, and a mandatory negative test to return to the country.
That’s why a program like World of Hyatt — while smaller — is still a robust loyalty program for this new age of travel, as the vast majority of Hyatt properties are located in the United States. Besides, for the foreseeable future, most business travel will take part closer to home with shorter distances to cover, meaning more executives will be looking for a chain with plenty of properties to choose from right here in the U.S.
Still, Hyatt comprises an impressive number of brands, from the Park Hyatt to the Andaz to family-friendly properties such as Hyatt House. While not a Marriott or a Hilton in terms of size, Hyatt properties span more than 1,000 properties worldwide in 68 different countries, including business-friendly labels like Hyatt Place and Hyatt Centric, which are often in the lower categories, requiring fewer points per award night. All the more reason to launch a cobranded business card that road warriors could use to up their earning and enjoy elite benefits while traveling for work.
Business travel will eventually return
TPG’s senior aviation reporter, David Slotnick, reported on the return of business travel this summer as domestic leisure travel numbers soared through the roof. While business travel hasn’t caught on as fast, thanks to widespread vaccinations, in-person events and meetings have started to return and will be sure to come back in some form or another eventually.
When it does, some business travelers are sure to be looking for new credit cards they can leverage to make their work trips more rewarding. There are many compelling reasons why business owners should open a separate business card from all their personal cards. For one, you can keep all of your expenses separate and establish a business line of credit history since it won’t affect your personal report.
Despite threats of COVID-19 variants, we can expect some level of business travel to continue to exist. For those who scout out Hyatt properties on their business trips, a separate business card from the consumer card would be a beneficial option to have.
Another way to reach elite status
A business Hyatt card could instantly give people an incentive to spend more in order to earn more annual elite night credits, as pursuing elite status is an important value proposition for business travelers.
The current World of Hyatt credit card comes with a $95 annual fee and offers automatic Discoverist status — the lowest elite status level in the World of Hyatt program. At this level, you’ll enjoy bonus points on Hyatt purchases, 2 p.m. late checkout based on availability and more. Cardmembers will also enjoy five qualifying night credits towards your next tier status every year and the opportunity to earn two additional nights through every $5,000 spent on the card in a calendar year. While this is a nice boost to elite status, it can be challenging to achieve the higher ranks of Hyatt elite status unless you stay at Hyatt hotels on a regular basis.
Other hotel cobranded business cards offer automatic top-tier status, though at the exchange of a high annual fee. Similarly, it would be a hit if Hyatt created a cobranded business card option with a higher annual fee that offered either automatic Explorist or Globalist statuses — the levels where you’ll find room and suite upgrades, bonus points and more — or let you earn them through spending. Or, perhaps cardholders could hit Explorist status faster by owning and spending on both the business and personal version Hyatt cards each year.
Chase is the only major transfer partner to Hyatt
Hyatt is a smaller (but still major) hotel chain, so it’s not surprising that there are fewer options to earn Hyatt points than with some of the other hotel loyalty programs out there.
Chase is currently the only major transfer partner of Hyatt. While this gives Chase Ultimate Rewards an edge for Hyatt enthusiasts over American Express Membership Rewards and Citi ThankYou, adding a cobranded Hyatt business card option would create another attractive avenue for travelers to ramp up their earning with Hyatt, as well as offering the opportunity to redeem more World of Hyatt points.
Beyond stays at Hyatt hotels and resorts, you can earn a stash of World of Hyatt points through spend on the World of Hyatt Credit card or transferring Ultimate Rewards points from your Chase Sapphire Reserve or Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. Chase also has strong business card options, including the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card or the Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card. With only one major transfer partner, Hyatt needs to create an in-house business card to actively compete with Chase’s Ultimate Rewards-earning cards.
While TPG doesn’t have any information on if Hyatt will ever come out with a cobranded business card, we think it would surely be a crowd-pleaser. For business owners and business travelers loyal to the World of Hyatt brand, a consumer option alone may not cut it any more. That said, if you’re a business owner, it’s a great time to apply for the personal version while elite status qualifications are halved for the remainder of 2021.
Official application link: World of Hyatt Credit Card with a sign-up bonus of up to 60,000 bonus points: 30,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in your first three months from account opening. Plus, up to 30,000 more bonus points by earning 2 bonus points total per $1 spent in the first six months from account opening on purchases that normally earn 1 bonus point, on up to $15,000 spent.
Featured photo courtesy of Hyatt.
Editors note: A previous version of this post said Hyatt had acquired Small Luxury Properties of the World. The article has been updated to note that Hyatt partnered with Small Luxury Hotels of the World. The article also said that Hyatt was alone among the major hotel chains without a business cobranded card, but this information has since been amended.
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