New ‘60,000 point’ World of Hyatt card offer has a major catch
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Hyatt has been really proactive when it comes to responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and staying top-of-mind even while many are at home.
First, there were new cleaning standards. Then, the World of Hyatt program suspended plans for peak and off-peak pricing and made it easier to earn status through a variety of promotions and a reduction in elite requirements.
Now, Hyatt is taking another step to attract new cardholders who are ready to think about future travel with a new sign-up offer on the World of Hyatt Credit Card.
The latest offer is marketed as up to 60,000 World of Hyatt points, a full 10,000 points more than the previous offer — but there’s quite a big catch you need to be aware of.
Let’s take a closer look at the World of Hyatt card’s sign-up bonus to see if it’s worth getting the card now.
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Current World of Hyatt offer
Instead of a typical lump sum points payout after spending a certain amount, Hyatt has opted for a different approach with this World of Hyatt card’s offer. Just like an increasing number of other rewards cards — triggering the full bonus is now a tiered exercise … though with some additional complexities.
First, you’ll earn 30,000 World of Hyatt bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months from account opening. That’s the easy part. Here’s where things start to get a little tricky.
New cardholders can earn another 30,000 points by spending up to $15,000 in the first six months of account opening — but it’s not what you probably think. In fact, it’s really half that number of bonus points by our calculations.
2x instead of 1x on non-bonused spending
The way this works is that Hyatt is now giving you 2 points per $1 on purchases that normally earn just 1 bonus point per $1, on up to $15,000 in purchases for a total of 30,000 additional points. And while that does indeed add up to 30,000 points, it’s really just 15,000 more points above and beyond the 15,000 you’d earn for those purchases at the usual 1x.
Any spending in a category that already earns a bonus on the card, such as 4x points at Hyatt hotels, will not count towards the $15,000 cap for the 2x points offer. You have six months from account opening to take advantage of this chance to earn 2 points on everyday purchases, on up to $15,000 in total.
Is it worth it?
TPG values Hyatt points at 1.7 cents each, so the full 60,000-point sign-up bonus could be worth up to $1,020, if you consider all 60,000 points a part of the bonus. But since only 45,000 of the points are a true bonus beyond what you’d earn from typical spending on the card, this bonus offer is worth $765 in our judgment.
While earning the first 30,000 points is fairly straightforward, earning the next 30,000 points not only requires a significant haul of spending ($15,000 in six months), but it also requires that the spending is on a non-bonused category.
For the World of Hyatt card, the bonus categories are as follows:
- 4x points per dollar for Hyatt stays and experiences
- 2x points per dollar for local transit and commuting
- 2x points per dollar for dining
- 2x points per dollar for airfare purchased directly with the airline
- 2x points per dollar for fitness clubs and gym memberships
- NEW: 2x points per dollar on everything else (up to $15,000 in the first six months of card ownership) (then 1x)
This a nice array of categories where you’ll earn Hyatt bonus points, and now, non-bonused spending earns at a bonus for a period of time, too. However, to fully maximize this offer, you have to spend $15,000 within six months specifically in a non-bonused category, which I imagine for some people, isn’t something they keep close track of.
This makes the offer less valuable than a flat-out traditional card bonus.
Nevertheless, this card is potentially a good option for non-bonused spending, especially if you have a large purchase, home renovation, etc. coming up in the next six months and are also working towards unlocking other Hyatt card spending perks.
For instance, if you are planning a home renovation, your home improvement store, furniture purchases, etc. could often fit within the confines of non-bonused spending. This could help you earn not only the initial 30,000 bonus points but also 2x points on up to $15,000 (as long as it is done within the first six months of card opening).
Many folks also like to pay their taxes — despite the fees — with credit cards. If you are one of them, this could be a good option for you.
One of the best ongoing benefits from the World of Hyatt card is the annual free-night certificate at a Category 1-4 Hyatt property which you’ll receive every account anniversary.
This alone can be worth way more than the card’s $95 annual fee. You’ll also get a second free night after spending $15,000 in a year, which may be a nice stack onto earning the full bonus since both require the same amount of spending.
There are four primary levels of Hyatt elite status: Member, Discoverist, Explorist and Globalist. You’ll get Discoverist status simply by having the card, which comes with benefits such as late checkout, preferred rooms and a 10% points bonus on eligible purchases.
In 2021, it’s easier than ever to level up your status with elite qualifications cut in half and promotions aplenty, including a double elite night offer that runs through Feb. 28, 2021. (Registration for the promo has ended.) You also earn nights toward status with spending on the card at a rate of two nights for $5,000 spent on the card. This means $15,000 in spending should trigger six elite nights toward Hyatt status, in addition to the bonus points and second Category 1 – 4 award.
At first glance, a 60,000-point sign-up bonus for the World of Hyatt Credit Card is one of the highest total numbers of bonus points we’ve ever seen publicly available for this card.
However, earning the full bonus requires a lot of work taking into account the $15,000 in total spending and the non-bonus category requirements to earn 2x points as part of the bonus.
Additionally, 15,000 of those points are really points you would have earned anyway on the card at a rate of 1 point per dollar spent, even outside of the bonus. In that regard, it’s more like 45,000 total true bonus points.
While not nearly as great of an offer as it seems at first glance, this is still a solid offer for those that have a lot of upcoming non-bonus purchases and want to focus on Hyatt in 2021. It’s a card certainly worth keeping for the long-haul once you have it.
It’s also a great place to start for those looking to make a run for Globalist, which only requires 30 nights in 2021 (half the usual amount). Not only will you get five elite nights just by having the card, triggering the full bonus will earn you six more, putting you over a third of the way to Globalist if you maximize this new welcome bonus.
Featured photo by Eric Helgas/The Points Guy
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