World of Hyatt Card Review: Lavish Benefits, Reasonable Cost

The rewards and perks on this card, including an automatic free night each year and bonus rewards on everyday spending, can easily cover the annual fee.
Jun 16, 2022

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Our Take

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
The bottom line:

If you're a Hyatt fan and you're looking for a fast path to free nights and elite status, this card is a perfect fit.

Jump to: Full Review
World Of Hyatt Credit Card
Annual fee
$95
Regular APR
16.74%-23.74% Variable APR
Intro APR
N/A
Rec. credit score
690-850 (Good - Excellent)
Apply now

on Chase's website

Quick Facts

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • New cardholder bonus offer

  • Automatic free night annually

  • Bonus categories

  • Luxury perks

Cons

  • Has annual fee

  • Complicated rewards

  • Limited redemptions

Alternate Pick: Flexible rewards on travel and dining
Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card
NerdWallet rating 
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Transfer points to multiple partners

Earn bonus rewards in various categories including travel and dining. Get 25% more value when you redeem for travel through the Chase portal. Or, transfer one of several loyalty programs, including World of Hyatt, at a 1:1 ratio. Bonus: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Annual Fee: $95.

Read our review

Compare to Other Cards

NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Annual fee

$95

Annual fee

$0

Annual fee

$95

Regular APR

16.74%-23.74% Variable APR

Regular APR

12.74%-23.74% Variable APR

Regular APR

16.74%-23.74% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Intro APR

0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
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Full Review

Those who hanker for the Hyatt brand when making travel plans will find a lot to love about the World of Hyatt Credit Card. It's a top choice among hotel cards, offering a compelling suite of first-rate benefits: a big sign-up bonus, generous ongoing rewards, high-value points, automatic elite status, a free night certificate every anniversary year and a way to notch an additional free night with enough spending. The free night benefit alone could make up for the annual fee of $95.

World of Hyatt Credit Card: Basics and benefits

Card type: Hotel.

Annual fee: $95.

Sign-up bonus: Earn 30,000 Bonus Points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Plus, up to 30,000 More Bonus Points by earning 2 Bonus Points total per $1 spent in the first 6 months from account opening on purchases that normally earn 1 Bonus Point, on up to $15,000 spent.

Ongoing rewards:

  • 4 bonus points per $1 spent with your card at Hyatt hotels, including participating restaurants and spas. Properties under the Hyatt umbrella include the Park Hyatt, Miraval, Andaz and Hyatt Place.

  • 2 points per dollar spent on dining at restaurants, cafes and coffee shops; airline tickets purchased through the airline; fitness club and gym memberships; and local transit and commuting including rideshare services.

  • 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.

NerdWallet values Hyatt points at 1.9 cents each. This is a baseline value, drawn from real-world data, not a maximized value. In other words, you should aim for award redemptions that offer 1.9 cents or more in value from your Hyatt points.

Points can be redeemed for hotel stays, room upgrades and certain purchases at participating Hyatt locations, such as fitness classes, spa therapy and dining. You can also transfer points to certain airline partners, but the unfavorable transfer ratios make this a low-value option.

Foreign transaction fee: None.

APR: The ongoing APR is 16.74%-23.74% Variable APR.

Other benefits:

  • One free night each card anniversary year at a Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel or resort. (Categories range from 1 to 8.)

  • An additional free night at a Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel or resort after spending $15,000 in an anniversary year.

  • Automatic elite status: Your card grants you Discoverist status, which includes expedited check-in, room upgrades and late checkout when available. Plus, it allows you to reach the next elite status tier, Explorist, through card spending.

Where World of Hyatt Credit Card shines

Free nights aplenty

Let's start with the card's valuable sign-up bonus: Earn 30,000 Bonus Points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Plus, up to 30,000 More Bonus Points by earning 2 Bonus Points total per $1 spent in the first 6 months from account opening on purchases that normally earn 1 Bonus Point, on up to $15,000 spent.

Depending on how you choose to carve up that points cache, you could be looking at as many as 17 free nights at a Category 1 hotel of your choosing, or living the high life with a one-night stay at a swanky Category 8 property. And that's on top of the free annual night that comes with the World of Hyatt Credit Card. Spend $15,000 in an anniversary year, and you can earn a second free night.

Rich ongoing rewards

World of Hyatt Credit Card will earn you 4 points per dollar spent at Hyatt properties. Those points from the card come on top of the 5 points per dollar you earn from the hotel just by being a World of Hyatt member. That adds up to 9 points per dollar spent on Hyatt hotels and resorts, including participating restaurants and spas.

You'll also earn bonus rewards in everyday spending categories, including commuting, dining out and working out. And points are worth a lot more than the standard 1 cent each. Many current hotel programs offer substantially less than a penny of value per point.

Automatic elite status

World of Hyatt Credit Card gives you automatic Discoverist status, which offers:

  • A 10% bonus on points earned on eligible room rates and incidental charges.

  • An upgrade to a preferred room based on availability.

  • Late 2 p.m. checkout, when available.

  • Waived resort fees on free night awards.

These perks could make your next stay a lot more pleasant. Without the World of Hyatt Credit Card, you'd need to earn 25,000 base points or stay 10 qualifying nights each calendar year to reach Discoverist status.

A path to higher elite status

World of Hyatt Credit Card also gives you an accelerated path to the next level of elite status, Explorist status, which comes with even swankier perks like a 20% bonus points on eligible spending and two club-level passes to fill up on complimentary continental breakfast and evening hors d’oeuvres.

In order to be eligible for Explorist status, you'll need to have 30 qualifying nights. But ownership of the World of Hyatt Credit Card gives you credit for five nights, and you'll earn credit for two additional nights every time you spend $5,000 on the card. This means big spenders could potentially reach Explorist status quickly through spending alone. With other hotel cards, reaching a higher elite status through card spending often isn't an option.

World of Hyatt Credit Card: Pitfalls and other possibilities

Somewhat complex rewards categories

World of Hyatt Credit Card rewards you handsomely for Hyatt stays, but you may find its other reward tiers difficult to keep track of or take advantage of. For example, you get 2 points back for airline tickets, but only if purchased directly through the airline. And if you don't normally work out at the gym, the 2 points back on fitness club and gym memberships may not do much for you.

You might fare better with a general travel card that earns a flat rate back on everything and lets you use your rewards for multiple forms of travel. For example, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card earns 2 miles per $1 spent, and you can redeem rewards for any hotel or flight you'd like.

Visit NerdWallet's roundup of top credit cards to find out whether this is the best credit card to apply for based on your goals and priorities.

Worldwide, but not everywhere

Although Hyatt is a relatively large hotel chain, that doesn't mean there's one where you want to go — and if your travel inclinations take you somewhere that a Hyatt isn't, it doesn't matter how many free nights you have saved up.  Some locations don't have any Hyatt-owned spots; others have only a handful that may not be near your destination.

If a hotel chain that's virtually ubiquitous is more valuable to you than any other attribute, consider the $95-annual-fee Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card, which comes with a free night award every year after your account anniversary. While Hyatt has over 900 properties, Marriott has over 7,000.

Should you get the World of Hyatt Credit Card?

World of Hyatt Credit Card is ideal for someone who stays within the brand at least a few times a year and wants perks and hotel status served up alongside their stay. The annual free night certificate alone can easily outstrip the cost of the card's annual fee, and if you’re the sort who puts a lot of spending on your card, you’ll be raking in those plush elite status perks in no time.

on Chase's website

Methodology

NerdWallet reviews credit cards with an eye toward both the quantitative and qualitative features of a card. Quantitative features are those that boil down to dollars and cents, such as fees, interest rates, rewards (including earning rates and redemption values) and the cash value of benefits and perks. Qualitative factors are those that affect how easy or difficult it is for a typical cardholder to get good value from the card. They include such things as the ease of application, simplicity of the rewards structure, the likelihood of using certain features, and whether a card is well-suited to everyday use or is best reserved for specific purchases. Our star ratings serve as a general gauge of how each card compares with others in its class, but star ratings are intended to be just one consideration when a consumer is choosing a credit card. Learn how NerdWallet rates credit cards.