World of Hyatt: The Complete Guide to the Hotel Loyalty Program

Joe CortezAug 13, 2021
Grand Hyatt Hotel in Dubai

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The World of Hyatt hotel loyalty program is one of the best hotel elite status programs out there — if not the best. In fact, it's the winner of the "Best hotel rewards program for frequent travelers" category in NerdWallet's . That's thanks to a best-in-class elite status program and high-value rewards program, easily setting Hyatt apart from all the other hotel loyalty programs out there.

Based on our most recent analysis of , World of Hyatt points hold the most value among hotel rewards programs and the most value for luxury travelers. When using points for free hotel nights, each World of Hyatt point is worth . The program also allows members to earn additional free nights by earning status, or by holding the .

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On the downside, although Hyatt has more than 900 properties in its portfolio, it's still one of the smaller hotel programs, especially compared to big players like the and programs. Finding a Hyatt hotel at your destination may be slightly more difficult than with other brands.

The World of Hyatt program (formerly known as Hyatt Gold Passport) currently features four different tiers of membership (including the base Member level), with loyalty points redeemable at Hyatt's more than 900 hotels which span six continents.

Is World of Hyatt the right loyalty program for you? Are some World of Hyatt redemptions better than others? We went through with a fine-toothed comb to find the best and worst redemption options of this hotel loyalty program.

Based on our most recent analysis, NerdWallet values World of Hyatt points at  apiece. To determine the value of reward points, we compared cash prices and reward redemptions for hotel stays across several destinations and dates. We divided the cost in cash by the cost in points to determine a “cent per point” value for each hotel night, then averaged this value across several searches. .

This is therefore a baseline value for World of Hyatt points, based on real-world data collected from hundreds of hotel stays, not a maximized value. In other words, you should aim for award bookings that offer  or more in value from your World of Hyatt points.

To determine the value of your points for specific bookings, divide the cash value (minus any fees associated with the reward booking) by the number of points required. So if a hotel room would cost either $100, or 15,000 points + $10 in resort fees, the math would be as follows:

($100 – $10) / 15,000 = 0.006, or 0.6 cent per point.

The World of Hyatt loyalty program includes . The most popular Hyatt brands include:

Other brands in the Hyatt portfolio include: Andaz, Hyatt Zilara, Hyatt Ziva, Miraval Resorts and The Unbound Collection by Hyatt.

When Hyatt Gold Passport became World of Hyatt, the first noticeable change was the elimination of the traditional loyalty tiers: silver, gold and platinum. Instead, members can qualify for one of four status levels based on how many nights, base points, or qualifying meetings or events they book every year: member, Discoverist, Explorist and Globalist. Here's what you need to know about each tier of :

How to earn Member status: All members start as World of Hyatt members. Simply sign up and hand over your email.

Points earned: Members earn 5 base points for every $1 spent on qualifying stays, dining and spa experiences charged at the hotel. Members earn 10 points for every $1 spent on FIND experiences.

Other benefits:

How to earn Discoverist status: Stay 10 qualifying nights, earn 25,000 base points, host three qualifying meetings or events, or open the .

Points earned: Members earn 5 base points for every $1 spent on qualifying stays, dining and spa experiences charged at the hotel. Members earn 10 points for every $1 spent on FIND experiences. Plus, earn 10% bonus points when you choose points as your reward.

Other benefits:

How to earn Explorist status: Stay 30 qualifying nights, earn 50,000 base points, or host 10 qualifying meetings or events.

Points earned: Members earn 5 base points for every $1 spent on qualifying stays, dining and spa experiences charged at the hotel. Members earn 10 points for every $1 spent on FIND experiences. Plus, earn 20% bonus points when you choose points as your reward.

Other benefits:

How to earn Globalist status: Stay 60 qualifying nights, earn 100,000 base points, or host 20 qualifying meetings or events.

Points earned: Members earn 5 base points for every $1 spent on qualifying stays, dining and spa experiences charged at the hotel. Members earn 10 points for every $1 spent on FIND experiences. Plus, earn 30% bonus points when you choose points as your reward.

Other benefits:

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The most loyal guests can earn lifetime Globalist status in World of Hyatt. After earning 1 million base World of Hyatt points over the course of their membership, travelers receive lifetime status. This designation grants all the benefits of Globalist every year, including one free night award up to Category 7 and four suite upgrade awards every March.

In order to qualify for lifetime status, all points must be earned in the same account. Only base points earned from eligible room rates, eligible incidental charges and eligible non-stay charges count toward lifetime status. Points earned from elite status bonuses, points earned from a Hyatt-branded credit card, or points transferred from other programs don’t count. And if a member’s account is canceled for any reason (including inactivity), any forfeited lifetime points can’t be applied to another account.

World of Hyatt points can be earned through staying at Hyatt hotels, spending money with Hyatt’s travel partners, or through spending on the .

No matter what loyalty tier you belong to, all World of Hyatt members earn the same number of base points for their stay: 5 base points for every eligible $1 spent on qualifying stays, dining and spa experiences.

However, elite members of this program earn bonus points on top of base points. The bonus is based on status: Discoverists receive 10% bonus points, Explorists receive 20% bonus points and Globalists receive 30% bonus points.

On a qualifying stay of $100, here’s how many points members could expect to receive:

While base points count toward elite and lifetime status, bonus points do not. In the example above, a Globalist member would earn 500 points toward elite and lifetime status, but the extra 150 bonus points apply only toward future awards.

In addition to the traditional way of earning points through hotel stays, World of Hyatt members can also earn elite-qualifying points by booking FIND experiences . FIND is a collection of experiences offered through luxury partner IfOnly that are not necessarily available at the hotel or through an online travel agency.

When booked, these offerings can help travelers discover the unique aspects of their destination that are not necessarily found from a simple search. Some interesting experiences include:

While these experiences are an easy way to earn World of Hyatt points quickly, they can be pricey. While some cost less than $100 per person, events like joining a quarterback camp with a former Super Bowl champion in San Francisco or having best-selling author Edward Vilga critique your work in New York can cost upwards of $500.

To book an event, every World of Hyatt member must create a separate account on the FIND website. Each experience will earn 10 base World of Hyatt points per eligible $1 spent, which apply toward elite and lifetime stays. But the rewards apply only to World of Hyatt points, and will not earn points in partner programs, airline programs, M life rewards, or any other substitute in lieu of points.

Hyatt has only one credit card that earns points toward future rewards: the . While the card comes with a annual fee, cardholders can receive one free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel or resort every year after their card member anniversary.

New cardholders may qualify for a bonus offer:

When using the card, cardholders earn up to 9 points total per $1 spent at Hyatt hotels: 4 bonus points per $1 spent at Hyatt hotels and 5 base points per $1 spent as a World of Hyatt member. Card members also earn 2 points per $1 spent at restaurants, on airline tickets purchased directly from the airline, on local transit or commuting and fitness club or gym memberships. Everywhere else, the card earns 1 point per $1 spent.

As long as you have the card open, you will have World of Hyatt Elite status, and will receive 5 qualifying night credits toward your next tier status every year. Additionally, you can also earn two more qualifying night credits every time you spend $5,000 on your card in a calendar year, along with an extra free night at any Category 1-4 hotel or resort if you spend $15,000 during your anniversary year.

You can also transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards® points earned from the or cards. Points transfer at a 1:1 ratio and must be transferred in increments of 1,000 points.

In addition to the FIND experiences and the , there are plenty of different ways World of Hyatt members can earn points toward rewards. The methods range from renting cars with a partner, to staying at select Las Vegas resorts. Here are a few additional ways to earn World of Hyatt points:

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Although most people associate World of Hyatt points with being applied to hotel stays, there are many other ways to use them, such as transferring them to airline partners (though we typically don’t recommend it). Here are a few:

Perhaps the best use of World of Hyatt points is at the over 700 properties around the world. Award categories range from Category 1 to Category 8, with prices for a standard room award ranging from 5,000 points per night to 40,000 points per night.

When using your points for hotel night awards, we estimate your points are worth  each, which is the highest overall return for any rewards program we surveyed. Using your points for hotel awards is one of the best returns you can get anywhere in the industry.

Those who are short on points can still redeem them for a Cash + Points award. The total cost of the award is based on the hotel category and the standard rate for standard rooms:

In practice: If you are staying at a Category 4 hotel on a Points + Cash award and the standard rate for the room is $150, you would pay 7,500 World of Hyatt points and $75. To determine if a Points + Cash award is a good value for your stay, compare the standard room rate with the value of the points you would use. If your points and cash equivalent is less than the cost of the standard rate, then it is a good deal.

If you don’t have the points for a full award and can’t find a good rate with Points + Cash, you can also use points to upgrade your hotel room experience. How many points you ultimately spend is based on how you plan on upgrading your room:

While upgrades to the Regency Club/Grand Club level cost 3,000 points per night, upgrades to suites can cost between 6,000 and 9,000 points per night. If you have a long stay ahead of you, upgrading with points can cost the same as a standard room award. Unless it’s a special occasion, or you have no other use of your points, this might not be the best use of points.

World of Hyatt points aren’t just good for reservations. Travelers who want to treat themselves to a spa treatment or a nice dinner can also use points to pay for their bill. Points can be used to pay for in-room movies, parking, transportation and other incidentals at the hotel, by exchanging them for account credits. The exchanges are as follows:

However, this is not an optimal use of your points. Because points exchange at a rate of 0.5 cent per point, you would lose significant value by using points at the hotel for a spa treatment, in-room movie or meal.

For those looking for a big getaway, World of Hyatt points are also good at select Hyatt resorts and Miraval resorts. The eight all-inclusive resorts accepting World of Hyatt points are:

Points can also be used at Miraval resorts, for both award nights and Points + Cash awards. Awards at all Miraval resorts are:

Points and cash awards for all Miraval resorts are:

Although they may be expensive, all-inclusive resort stays come with all the amenities one can imagine. Before walking away from these high points prices, consider how much it would cost to go on vacation to one of these resorts. If the points price is better than paying in points at a value of  per point, then it may be worth the splurge on points.

World of Hyatt points can also be used for free night awards at participating M life Rewards destinations in Las Vegas. The current participating resorts and their points price are:

Considering it’s possible to get deeply discounted prices at Las Vegas properties, we don’t generally recommend using World of Hyatt points toward these destinations. Based on our average value of  per point, use your points only if the resort prices are above:

While hotel rooms are the primary way World of Hyatt members use their points, there are still other ways members can use excess points. The three additional ways members can exchange their well-earned points are toward FIND experiences, exchanging them for airline miles with participating airlines, or exchanging points for Avis car rental certificates.

With so many options to redeem World of Hyatt points, which make the most sense? Based on our value of World of Hyatt points, here are the best uses of points we could find.

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the , including those best for:

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