New World of Hyatt card offer helps you earn status 2x as fast but it has one major catch
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Late last year, Hyatt announced a massive temporary reduction in what is required to earn elite status in 2021.
Hyatt slashed the stay and spending requirements by 50% for the 2021 qualification year (for status valid through Feb. 28, 2023). Here’s a look at what is currently needed to hit each status tier in World of Hyatt for this year.
- Discoverist: Stay five tier-qualifying nights or earn 12,500 base points ($2,500 in spending)
- Explorist: Stay 15 tier-qualifying nights or earn 25,000 base points ($5,000 in spending)
- Globalist: Stay 30 tier-qualifying nights or earn 50,000 base points ($10,000 in spending)
Now, Hyatt is taking a related step to attract new cardholders — especially those who are interested in status — with a new sign-up offer on the World of Hyatt Credit Card.
There are several parts to this offer: New cardholders can earn double tier-qualifying nights for stays through the end of 2021, and still earn up to 60,000 bonus points after fulfilling the spending requirements.
Here’s how it works, and a breakdown of whether it makes sense for you.
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Double tier-qualifying nights
New World of Hyatt cardholders who apply through Sept. 30, 2021 will now receive two tier-qualifying night credits for each eligible night stayed through Dec. 31, 2021. That’s double what you typically would receive for stays. If you can take advantage of this offer, it means you’d be able to hit the program’s status tiers, which are already lower than usual, even faster.
Let’s look at an example.
A new World of Hyatt credit cardholder who applied today, with no qualifying nights under their belt, would need just 13 nights of actual stays (earning 26 tier-qualifying nights) through Dec. 31, 2021 to reach top-tier Globalist status. That’s because you automatically receive five qualifying nights just for having the card, so the stays would put you up at 31 tier-qualifying nights total, which is enough for Globalist status this year.
Keep in mind that you also earn nights toward status with spending on the card at a rate of two tier-qualifying nights for $5,000 spent on the card (this is not doubled), so theoretically you could earn some nights this way as well, depending on how many purchases you put on your card.
However, there’s another element of the sign-up bonus that is not quite what it seems on the surface. The latest offer is also marketed as up to 60,000 World of Hyatt points — but there’s quite a catch you need to be aware of.
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 will reward you with 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 non-bonused categories, so you’re going to have to strategize.
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
- 2x points per dollar on everything else (up to $15,000 in the first six months of card ownership) (then 1x)
This is 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, the tiered nature of this and the complication of planning out your bonus versus non-bonus spending makes this offer less valuable than a typical intro bonus with just a single spending threshold to meet.
Nevertheless, this card is potentially a good option for non-bonused spending, especially if you have a large purchase such as a home renovation coming up in the next six months and are also working towards unlocking other Hyatt card spending perks.
For instance, if you are planning some home improvements, your hardware and decor purchases could fit within the confines of non-bonused spending. This might 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.
As mentioned, 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.
In addition, the double tier-qualifying night credits for each eligible night stay through Dec. 31, 2021 will help you reach status much faster. However, earning the full 60,000-point 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 want to focus on Hyatt for the rest of 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, but spending enough to earn the full bonus will earn you six more, requiring just ten nights of stays through the end of the year to hit Globalist if you maximize this new sign-up bonus.
Featured photo by Eric Helgas/The Points Guy
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