There was a time when I was Hyatt Diamond (see Hyatt Kills Gold Passport). Now, I’m holding on to Explorist. I requalified for Marriot Titanium Elite thanks to upgrading my Chase Marriott card (see Why I Upgraded My Chase Marriott to Bonvoy). Today, I logged in to see that I have 15 nights earned for the near year. The climb to 75 is daunting. I will aim for 50 which will give me Platinum Elite which still includes 4PM late checkout, the perk I use the most. Unlike SPG, under Marriott suite upgrades are less automatic and more a result of negotiation (Unhappy Upon Check In? Don’t Let Buyer’s Remorse Sink In). For that reason, I don’t see an incentive to try and accrue the extra 25 nights.
4PM checkout notwithstanding, I’m questioning if I want to stay loyal to Marriott. The days of affordable points redemptions like the Aloft Bangkok have been killed since the merger. Cash and points is virtually nonexistent (see Are Marriott Cash + Points a Myth?). And customer service is not at the SPG level.
Hyatt is the last brand that has not devalued (see Hyatt Regency Toronto: Please Don’t Devalue!) making it the most intriguing. But, as I wrote before, I’m not going to stay at 50 Hyatt Houses just to qualify for Globalist. This makes upgrading my Chase Hyatt card in an effort to buy status a possibility.
Hyatt aside, could this be beginning of the end of points for hotel stays. If so, what will I do? I’m not a fan of Airbnb (see Airbnb Long-Term? Never Again: My Shanghai Experience). I am not a fan of using my own money. And I have no brand sponsorship. Fortunately, I don’t have to answer that question in the short term as I have hoarded my Hilton, Bonvoy, and Radisson points. With Hyatt as a Chase transfer partner, I can take solace in that as well. This new year has me asking if it is time to pray for another recession (see We Need Another Recession).
What are you doing in 2020 to maintain your impostor lifestyle?