Hyatt launches its first-ever business credit card with Chase — here are the details

Oct 6, 2021

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Let’s put the rumors to bed: Hyatt is adding a second credit card to its portfolio — and it’s a business card.

The World of Hyatt Business Credit Card makes its debut today as the first-ever cobranded business card from Chase and Hyatt. Since renewing their partnership in 2017, there have been persistent rumblings of a new Hyatt business card in the works, and now we know what that looks like.

First things first: A simple redux of the personal World of Hyatt Credit Card this is not. The business card is (mostly) reimagined from the ground up — with both positives and negatives — including flexible earning categories, interesting statement credits, points rebates…and a higher annual fee than its personal counterpart.

Let’s dive into the details of the new World of Hyatt Business Credit Card to see what it offers, who it might make sense for, and how it compares to the personal version. 

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In This Post

At a glance

Before we dive into analysis, here’s a brief snapshot of the new World of Hyatt Business Credit Card.

Current sign-up bonus

  • Earn up to 75,000 points after spending $7,500 on purchases within the first three months from account opening.
  • Apply by Dec. 31, 2021, and receive a complimentary one-year Headspace subscription (valued at $69.99 per year); Headspace subscription must be redeemed by Dec. 31, 2022.

Earnings

  • 2 points per dollar on the top three of eight spend categories each calendar quarter through Dec. 31, 2022; and top two of eight spend categories in 2023 and beyond (no limit). Spend categories include:
    • Dining
    • Airline tickets purchased directly with the airline
    • Car rental agencies
    • Local transit and commuting
    • Gas stations
    • Internet, cable and phone services
    • Social media and search engine advertising
    • Shipping
  • 9 points total per dollar on Hyatt stays and experiences — 4 points per dollar on the card at Hyatt hotels and resorts, including participating restaurants and spas on top of the 5 points per dollar at Hyatt hotels and resorts as a World of Hyatt member
  • 2 points per dollar for fitness club and gym memberships
  • 1 point per dollar on all other purchases

Status accelerator

  • Automatic Discoverist elite status
  • Earn 5 elite night credits with each $10,000 in spend on the card in a calendar year
    • With World of Hyatt’s 2021 reduced elite status criteria, World of Hyatt Business Credit cardmembers can earn top tier Globalist status with $60,000 in spend on the card now through Dec. 31, 2021.
Park Hyatt Aviara
Park Hyatt Aviara (Photo by Chris Dong/The Points Guy)

Major incentives and benefits

  • Spend $50,000 or more on the card in a calendar year and receive 10% of your redeemed points back for the remainder of the calendar year (up to 20,000 points per year)
  • Earn $100 in Hyatt credit each anniversary year
    • Spend $50 or more at any Hyatt property and earn $50 in statement credits up to two times each anniversary year
  • Gift up to 5 Discoverist statuses to others
  • No fee for employee business cards

Other perks

  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Complimentary roadside dispatch
  • Primary rental car collision damage waiver
  • Extended warranty protection
  • Purchase protection
  • Trip cancellation and travel interruption insurance
  • Travel and emergency assistance services
  • Access to Hyatt Leverage, Hyatt’s global business travel program that offers special rates to qualifying small and mid-sized enterprises at participating Hyatt hotels worldwide

Annual fee

  • The card carries a $199 annual fee, which is not waived the first year.

A closer look at earning rates

Hyatt and Chase are launching this business card with what they call an “adaptive accelerator.” Essentially, that’s a fancy term for bonus categories that change based on how you spend.

Here’s what the earnings look like on the World of Hyatt Business card.

Earning rate Category
2 points per dollar Your top three* spending categories each calendar quarter

Eligible categories include: Dining; airline tickets purchased directly with the airline; car rental agencies; local transit and commuting; gas stations; internet, cable and phone services; social media and search engine advertising; and shipping

*Top three categories through Dec. 31, 2022, then top two spending categories thereafter. 

2 points per dollar Fitness clubs and gym memberships
4 points per dollar Hyatt hotels and resorts, including participating restaurants and spas

Flexibility is a key tenet of this new card. For small-business owners who have a variety of shifting expenses, this is a welcome change from the more-typical fixed bonus categories.

Interestingly, cardholders will earn 2x points on their top three spending categories each quarter through the end of 2022, but only on the top two spending categories thereafter. This front-loading may signify that Chase intends to analyze data about where new cardholders spend prior to making decisions about future category bonuses and promotions.

A first for Chase

Small business owners can earn based on their spending needs. (Photo by Thomas Barwick/ Getty Images)

While it’s notable that this is the first time Chase is offering flexible bonus categories on a credit card, it’s far from the only product with this type of earning.

In fact, flexible earnings are somewhat of a trend with newer cards. For instance, the recently-launched Citi Custom Cash℠ Card provides the ability to earn up to 5% back on your top spending category, up to $500 each billing cycle (then 1% thereafter).

And while not a new product, another popular business card also offers earning flexibility. The American Express® Business Gold Card earns 4 Membership Rewards points on your top two spending categories each month (up to $150,000 in combined purchases each calendar year; then 1x)  and has a comparable annual fee of $250 (see rates and fees). 

Still, depending on how much your business spends in the eligible categories — and even if your spending habits evolve over time to new categories — this could be a huge potential boost to your earning potential.

A closer look at card benefits

(Photo by John Gribben for The Points Guy)

This is where things get interesting.

One of the best perks of the personal World of Hyatt Credit Card — and one that gets me spending on it regularly — is its free night every year, valid at Category 1-4 properties across the entire World of Hyatt umbrella and an additional free night certificate when you spend $15,000 on purchases with the card each calendar year.

A shifting value proposition

However, free night awards are not part of the perks package with the business card. While this may seem like a clear drawback, there’s more to it than what first meets the eye.

In a media event prior to the card’s launch, Chase and Hyatt executives shared that their intent was to create value for not only the primary cardholder but also for those employees that may be part of a small business. That’s why several major benefits of the card can be utilized by any member of the business, including authorized users.

Gifting Discoverist status (up to 5x)

The primary World of Hyatt business cardholder can gift Discoverist status to up to five individuals, and Chase confirmed that those members do not need to be authorized users on the card.

That means employees (or friends and family) can take advantage of upgrades to preferred rooms, premium Wi-Fi and late checkout.

$100 statement credit

If you spend $50 at a Hyatt property — including on stays, but also other purchases such as dining, spa, etc. — you will get $50 back as a statement credit, up to two times per anniversary year. This must be one of the easiest credit card statement credits to maximize given the low spending threshold.

10% redemption bonus

If you spend $50,000 or more on the World of Hyatt Business Credit Card in a calendar year, you’ll receive 10% of redeemed points back for the remainder of the calendar year (up to 20,000 points per year). To maximize this benefit, front-loading your business expenses at the beginning of the year may make the most sense so that you can count on points rebates on award stays you book after hitting that dollar mark.

Can you have both the personal and business Hyatt cards?

Cardholders who already have the World of Hyatt Credit Card can also apply for the World of Hyatt Business Credit Card, and there are several compelling reasons to do so.

Most significantly, carrying both cards will allow you to double dip on benefits as well as earning elite night credits. Both cards’ elite night credits can help you level up your status tier with the World of Hyatt program as well as securing MIlestone Rewards, such as bonus points, gift cards and suite upgrades. And that’s all possible even without staying at a Hyatt property. Here’s how you could amplify your elite status strategy with both cards.

World of Hyatt Credit Card World of Hyatt Business Credit Card
Automatic 5 elite night qualifying credits towards your next tier of status every year Yes No
Earn qualifying elite nights through card spending Yes, earn two nights for every $5,000 spent Yes, earn five nights for every $10,000 spent
Annual free-night certificate at a Category 1-4 Hyatt property every account anniversary Yes No
Earn a free-night certificate at a Category 1-4 Hyatt property if you spend $15,000 during your cardmember anniversary year Yes No
Spend $50,000 or more on the card in a calendar year and receive 10% of redeemed points back for the remainder of the calendar year No Yes
Earn $100 in Hyatt credit each anniversary year No Yes

 

What the Hyatt Business card is missing

To me, some of the most surprising elements of the World of Hyatt Business Card is what it doesn’t have.

No automatic elite nights

First, unlike the personal World of Hyatt Credit Card, which provides an automatic five elite nights each year, you do not earn any elite qualifying nights simply for having the business version.

Chase and Hyatt confirmed that with the business card, you can only earn elite qualifying nights from spending — five elite night credits for every $10,000 spent each calendar year.

This difference is one of the reasons why you might want to get both cards. You can earn elite nights automatically as well as through spending with the personal card, but the really start to up your elite credits by spending big on the business card.

Only entry-level status

Similar to the $95-per-year personal World of Hyatt Credit Card, the business version — with a $199 annual fee — comes with automatic Discoverist status, which is just the first level above basic membership.

Considering the card’s much higher annual fee, I’m surprised that mid-level Explorist status is not included with the business card. Granted, Explorist status only provides a modest boost in elite benefits compared to Discoverist, but club lounge access awards and higher-priority upgrades (not including suites) still provide some utility.

On the other hand, I can see the argument why Hyatt isn’t giving away higher levels of status left and right. This preserves the integrity of the program, including protecting those that earn status through stays.

Related: ‘One of the most valuable hotel cards’: A review of the World of Hyatt Credit Card

Is it worth the $199 annual fee?

Park Hyatt Istanbul (Photo by Chris Dong/The Points Guy)

The World of Hyatt Business Credit Card‘s sign-up bonus is impressive: 75,000 points after spending $7,500 within the first three months from account opening. That entire bonus is worth $1,275, according to the latest TPG valuations.

However, the ongoing value after this initial bonus is reliant on how you can maximize the rest of the card’s perks. First, let’s do some simple math. With up to $100 in Hyatt statement credit each cardmember year, that lowers the card’s effective annual fee to $99.

Omitting the earning rates for a moment, that $99 fee covers two other primary card perks:

  • Gifting Discoverist status to five individuals
  • The ability to get 10% of your redeemed points back after spending $50,000 in a calendar year (up to 20,000 points per year)

While the value of status is different for everyone, TPG pegs Discoverist status as worth up to $160. So there’s clear value in being able to dole it out to five people, as long as they can take advantage of it. Meanwhile, spending $50,000 may be a hefty amount for an individual, but that may be mere pocket change for some small businesses.

Of course, this doesn’t include other, more standard (but still important) card perks including no foreign transaction fees and trip cancellation and travel interruption insurance.

Bottom line

The addition of a World of Hyatt Business Credit Card is exciting for business owners who want the flexibility to earn and redeem within the program. However, with a $199 annual fee and no elite night credits without significant spending, existing Hyatt loyalists may be a bit less enthused.

At the end of the day, it’s clear who, Hyatt and Chase are targeting: Established small businesses with multiple employees and significant day-to-day expenses. If that’s you, the World of Hyatt Business Credit Card seems to be an excellent business card option. However, for everyone else, including sole proprietors and those with side hustles, you’ll need to evaluate whether this card is right for you.

Also keep in mind that, since this is a Chase credit card, it falls under the issuer’s unpublished “5/24 rule,” meaning you probably won’t be approved if you have opened five or more personal credit cards across all banks in the last 24 months.

Featured photo by John Gribben for The Points Guy. 

For rates and fees of the Amex Business Gold, please click here.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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