You Can Book These Las Vegas Resorts With the Hyatt Points + Cash Option and Here’s Why You’ll Want to Avoid It
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The next time you plan a trip to Las Vegas you can use your Hyatt points and match your Hyatt elite status to MGM. You can book a dozen MGM locations with your Hyatt points, so this gives you lots of options to take advantage of your Hyatt elite status, even if you aren’t a Vegas regular.
Now you can also book Hyatt Points + Cash awards at MGM properties in Las Vegas. Previously you could only redeem full award nights. In order to redeem a Points + Cash booking, you need to reserve the room through Hyatt’s website.
If you don’t have enough Hyatt points for your trip, don’t forget you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Hyatt instantly at a 1:1 ratio. The fastest way to get these points is to earn the massive 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards point sign-up bonus after meeting minimum spending requirements with the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card. You can read our review of the Ink Business Preferred here.
Use Your Hyatt Points, But You’ll Still Pay Those Las Vegas Resort Fees
After taking a look at this new offering, I have to admit, that this is not a good deal in most situations. The Points + Cash bookings are a simple 50/50 cut. So you pay half the normal amount of points and half the cash rate.
As an example, for an upcoming night at The Bellagio (a premium MGM hotel in the center of the strip) it would cost $286 per night + taxes & fees. Since this hotel is a category 6 hotel it costs 25,000 Hyatt points for a free night. A Points + Cash night would cost 12,500 Hyatt points and $143 in cash.
But watch out for those taxes & fees.
And Las Vegas is notorious for resort fees. One of the best perks with Hyatt award nights is that you won’t pay resort fees and taxes. But that only applies if you’re booking a entirely with points. With a Points + Cash booking you’ll still pay these extra fees and taxes. In the case of The Bellagio, you are looking at ~$65 ($45 resort fee + ~$20 in taxes) in fees per night!
Here’s the real kicker, Hyatt won’t waive the resort fee for free night stays at MGM resorts, even if they are booked fully with points (thanks to reader Michael for pointing that out). So you’ll be on the hook for the resort fees no matter what, but on full points stays you will save a bit on taxes.
If you are staying for a full week, these additional fees could really add up.
Match Your Hyatt Status to MGM
To make your Las Vegas stay more comfortable, you can status match your Hyatt Elite Status to MGM’s MLife Rewards Elite Status. This will get you valuable perks for your stay while in Las Vegas. Since there are tons of MGM hotels in Las Vegas, these perks extend to places outside the hotel you are staying at while visiting Sin City.
- MLife Pearl (Status Match for Hyatt Discoverist)
- Free Self Parking (normally $10+ per day)
- Skip-the-line at MGM Buffets (lines can often be >1 hour during peak dinner times)
- 10% bonus points on slot machines & room stays
- MLife Gold (Status Match for Hyatt Explorist or Globalist)
- All Pearl Rewards
- 20% bonus points on slot machines & room stays
- Free Valet Parking
- VIP Access to MGM Nightclubs for you and a guest
- Skip-the-line at MGM Restaurants (and Buffets)
- Fine dining priority reservations
- Priority check-in
- Free room upgrade (when available)
As you can see, folks with the MLife Gold elite status can earn tons of valuable perks while staying in Las Vegas. Free valet parking and free room upgrades are 2 of the best. These will most likely be strip-facing rooms at the very least and might actually lead to some really incredible suites.
If you want a jump start on earning Hyatt elite status, you could apply for the World of Hyatt Credit Card. It comes with automatic Discoverist status and you get 5 elite night credits each year you have the card. In addition, you’ll earn 2 elite night credits for every $5,000 you spend with the card per calendar year.
Use This Trick to Keep Hyatt Explorist Status Indefinitely
Many folks may not realize a valuable trick you can use to keep Hyatt Explorist indefinitely (or at least as long as this trick continues to last). This is available because of the fact that Hyatt’s reward cycle runs from March to March each year, and MGM’s reward cycle runs October through October of each year.
This means that if you have Hyatt Explorist status right now, you can do a simple online status match to earn MGM Gold status. This will allow you to enjoy MGM Gold status through October. Let’s say you are not able to maintain Hyatt Explorist status and lose it in March when the reward cycle resets for Hyatt. Since you will still have MGM Gold status through October, you can turn around and match MGM Gold status to Explorist status (which will stay active until the next March).
Once MGM Gold status expires in October, you can again status match your Explorist status to earn Gold for another year. Keep cycling these status matches and you can maintain both MGM Gold and Hyatt Explorist indefinitely.
But recently the value of this loophole was gutted when Hyatt made changes to the way the most lucrative elite status perks are earned. Now certain Explorist perks, like the free club lounge passes, are earned based on your elite night credits and not your elite status. So status matches to Hyatt have lost their luster.
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