Hyatt Kills Gold Passport

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The 2016 Festivus Airing of Blog Grievances has a new leader. A couple of weeks ago it was United which killed points travel. Today it is Hyatt which decided that my style of loyalty is not good enough for them. Last year, I completed the Hyatt Diamond Challenge which gave me status through February 2017. This year, I’ve been running all over the globe trying to meet the 25 night requirement to requalify for Diamond through February 2018. And what do I and those of my ilk get as reward for our checking in and checkout out of hotels more than we would like? What do we get for planning our gallivants partially based on whether there is a Hyatt there? Nothing come March 2018.

That’s because the only way for us ‘stay’ qualifiers to reach Globalist (the terrible name for Diamond in the new program) is to book 55+ nights or spend $20,000 at Hyatt hotels. That’s not feasible. Where in the world are Hyatt hotels? Not in a lot of places. Unless I become a Hyatt House resident, I’ll never meet this requirement.

I get why Hyatt is doing this in the sense that vagabond customers like myself are not as profitable as the road warrior whose company pays for him and the whole team to stay at a Hyatt over and over. But what about small business owners who can’t use the corporate card to charge their way to status? What about travel enthusiasts who want to explore the world? How are we supposed put our aspirations first and retain status?

We can’t. And more importantly, we no longer should care to do so. Next year, I’m not going to spend hours on Excel trying to figure out how I can tabulate 55 nights at Hyatts while simultaneously finding places in the world that fit my travel schedule. Hyatt can keep its free breakfast. I hate breakfast! Hyatt can keep its suite upgrades. I love my Chungking Mansion in Hong Kong!

This new rewards program will have unintended consequences. Revenue may go up but the intangible asset known as goodwill will suffer because those who love Hyatt for its Hyattness will be replaced by indifferent customers who do not care if they’re staying at Courtyard or a Choice Hotel, so long as the company is paying. That’s not loyalty. That’s short-sighted stupidity.

H/T: MTM, OMAAT, VFTW

From the high rise to the basement. Hyatt misplayed this hand.
From the high rise to the basement, Hyatt misplayed this hand.

 

24 COMMENTS

  1. Think you should be happy they gave you march 2018. Very upset they took 10 nites from c/c. I usually around 35 nites per year and after reading all info this morning was pretty positive to make globalist for following year. Now that cc 10 nites won’t count I’m going to enjoy 2017 and say goodbye Hyatt

    • Sorry i don’t think i or any customer should be happy for bread crumbs. Yes it’s better than immediate death but the trend is consumer gets the shaft for corporate greed.

  2. agreed, I match same as you early 2016 and have it until feb 2017. its already hard enough for me to get stays at hyatts, so far I have 16 stays, and need 9 more. there simply arent enough hyatts. I have no idea how they came up with 60+ night qualification. marriot/hilton have over 5000 rooms each and require 75 nights. hyatt only have what? 600~?

  3. They seem to want the corporate traveler. However, there aren’t many Hyatt’s. I stay 150+ nights a year with Marriott. Haven’t run into many Hyatt’s. Once in a while there will be a Hyatt House as an option but not enough to switch loyalty.

    • Oh thanks. Now i get it. NY Banker is a fitting title for your pro big business comment that will backfire when you need another bailout

  4. sweet comment to NYBanker.

    also, i too hate breakfast. i eat one meal a day. super late at night. according to all health magazines, that’s the most unhealthy thing you can do. today, i ran a half marathon. not “a race.” i just mapped out a 13.1 mile run. yesterday i cycled 50 miles with a trailer.

    i need to start a health magazine…

    a+ on grammar today.

  5. It’s also worth noting that Hyatt and MLife are no longer tier matching each other’s top tier. The new chart will be Hyatt Membership>MLife Sapphire, Hyatt Discoverist>MLife Pearl, Hyatt Explorist>MLife Gold, Hyatt Globalist>MLife Gold (according to The Points Guy). It is no longer possible to match to MLife Platinum with the top tier Hyatt status and vice versa. How they are going to swing this to be a benefit to their loyal guests is still mystery…

  6. Impressive how Hyatt has managed in a single swoop to turn so many rabid partisans, myself included, into indifferent occasional customers.

  7. I think Hyatt’s (as well as other companies) definition of Loyalty is not really being ‘loyal’ but rather how much money they spend. I think Lucky posted in his argument for the change, ‘why should someone who spends $1000 per night at Park Hyatt get the same night credit as someone who spent $85 at a Hyatt Place.’ I am paraphrasing..

    I think that’s where most people are misguided on what loyalty is. That person who spends $1000 a night isn’t going to be loyal to Hyatt. They can afford to go wherever his damn well pleases and will take their business.

    To me, loyalty is someone who will drive extra 20 minutes, bypassing other brands along the way, just to stay at a Hyatt, someone who will travel to another airport 60 miles away to fly on a specific airline. People who do this will be fiercely loyal and almost an apologist for the brand. I think they are forgetting that.

    There is an old saying… One person gives $5 to a homeless person. and another person gives $50 to that homeless person. On the face the person who gave $50 (ie the Park Hyatt $1000/night person) is more generous

    But if the first person only had $5 in his pocket and he gave it to the homeless person.. while the 2nd person had a $10000 and gave $50.. who is more generous person? I am/was a LOYAL member of the Hyatt. I swore up and down how awesome Hyatt is and pursuaded them to stay at Hyatt over Marriott or Hilton any chance I got.

    For Hyatt to say that my $5 isn’t good enough is a bit disappointing… but that’s the way it is. Just like the airlines now, we’ll all be free agents and going away from brand loyal to whatever works best for us… there won’t be any more ‘loyalty’ in loyalty industry.

    eh.. that’s my two cents.

    • Another garbage comment. Hyatt offered status match, should I not accept it? That was last year, this year I’ll hit the 25 stays. I won’t stop complaining just like you and your crew won’t stop posting stupid comments.

  8. Accept it then and stop complaining. For us who pays for 60+ nights i cant be more then happy to se statusmatchers gone as thet ruin it..

    • Did you read? I was not a status matcher in 2016. I am a ‘stays’ person not a ‘nights’ person. I doubt you are personally paying 60+ out of your own pocket. I’m also staying at SPG hotels 21 times. As a small business owner and someone who actually travels to new places, it is a lot harder for me to do than Mr. Cubicle who’s on assignment in Novi, Michigan. Final thing, notice that this post is under the ‘complaining’ section so no I won’t stop complaining.

  9. The 25 stays for US is the worst! stays in place, house should count as 0.5 meaning 50 stays or 100 nights.

    It couldnt be better for us who actually areloyal and pay ourselves to wipe away this system as its not fair.

    FFS.. i dont even have a Hyatt in my country!

    • Who’s complaining now? You act like this is a zero sum game. I doubt that the stay people took away a suite upgrade from you or finished that last sausage link at the free breakfast. The point of ‘points’ is not to spend money.

      All of this is cyclical. When there is an economic downturn, the corporations will cut back on business travel expenses, consultants will be in lower demand, and the hotels will chase after the stay people, hoping that we buy a beer at their overpriced bar.

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