Hyatt Is Making Major Award Category Changes – ~1 Month to Lock-In Lower Prices

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Hyatt is adjusting the award price for roughly one-third of their hotels with about an equal number of hotels increasing and decreasing in price.  The new prices will go into effect on Monday, March 18, 2019, at 11:01 pm Central Time.

So you’ve got a month to secure lower prices for hotels that are going up in award category.  If you already have an award reservation for a hotel that is decreasing in price, Hyatt is saying the hotel will start automatically refunding you the points difference on Tuesday March 19th.

If you’ve got the World of Hyatt Credit Card, you’ll want to take a look at the list of hotels changing because it will impact where you can use your Category 1-4 free night certificate.  There are 12 new hotels moving down to Category 4 and 18 hotels are moving up into Category 5.

The Hyatt Regency Hong Kong Tsim Sha Tsui has one of the best Club Lounges I’ve been to, unfortunately you won’t be able to use a free night certificate there after the changes

Hyatt 2019 Award Category Changes

For years now, Hyatt has had the best award chart of any major hotel chain, which makes their points worth much more than Hilton points, IHG points, or the others.  Given that they aren’t adding any new categories and that the increase and decrease is split 50/50 this isn’t as bad as it could have been.

Also, while you can lock in lower rates now, if you need to make any changes to your reservation after March 18th then “any adjustments made to existing reservations will follow the terms of the new award chart.”

At first glance it looks like these changes will hurt more people than it will help because most of the category increases are for hotels in the US and a good chunk of the hotels going down in price are located outside the US.  In the end it will depend on where you’re traveling.  And there are some nice hotels in great locations going down in price like the Hyatt Centric Waikiki Beach, Andaz Wall Street, and Andaz Singapore.

These are the hotels that Category 1-4 free night certificates will be valid at after March 18th:

And here are the hotels you can’t book with a Category 1-4 free night certificate after March 18th:

If my memory serves me right, this is the biggest shake-up Hyatt has made to their award categories in a while.  In other years Hyatt only shifted fewer than 10 properties.  And this changes comes on the heels of a massive devaluation of their Points + Cash award chart.

You can see the full list of category changes here.

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Jason Stauffer was a writer for Million Mile Secrets where he covered points, miles, credit cards, airlines, hotels and general travel. His work has appeared in The Points Guy and NextAdvisor.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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