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Link: New Hyatt Benefits
From January 7, 2014, you can now use a combination of Hyatt points and cash to book award nights! This will help you save your Hyatt points when you book award nights.
Your Hyatt points used to expire in 12 months, but Hyatt is extending that to 24 months. And you can get 20% off the Daily Rate if you are a Hyatt Platinum (which you get with the Hyatt credit card) or Diamond member!
New Points & Cash Award Chart
Here is Hyatt’s new Points & Cash award chart.
You pay half the cost of a full award stay in points and a fixed amount in cash (the cash portion is usually less than the value of the points you are saving) with Hyatt’s Points & Cash option.
Let’s say you want to stay at the Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome over Valentine’s Weekend (February 14, 2014 to February 16, 2014).
The Park Hyatt in Paris is currently a Category 6 hotel and will become a Category 7 hotel after January 7, 2014. It would cost you 30,000 points per night or 60,000 points for the weekend if you booked the stay only with points after January 7, 2014.
Or you could pay ~ $1,506 in cash for the 2 nights.
But using Hyatt’s new Points & Cash option, you only pay 15,000 points + $300 a night or 30,000 points & $600 for 2 nights.
However, Points & Cash rooms are subject to availability. This means that while you can book a regular room if you pay the full price in points, you may not always be able to book the same room using a combination of points and cash.
So during high season or peak travel time (summer and holidays) you might not be able to book a Points + Cash room.
You have to call 800-228-3360 within the US to book a Points & Cash room.
Points & Cash redemptions do count for elite stay credit when booking a Points + Cash room. So those 2 nights you booked at the Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome would earn you 2 nights towards elite status.
With Starwood hotels, you don’t earn Starwood points on the cash portion of your Cash + Points reservation. But, you will earn 5 Hyatt points per $1 on the cash portion of your Points & Cash reservation!
20% Discount for Elite Members
If you are a Platinum member (you can get free Platinum status with the Hyatt credit card) or Diamond member, you can get 20% off the daily rate on a standard room (subject to availability).
With the 20% discount, you may even pay less than an Advanced Purchase nonrefundable rate! But this rate is “subject to availability” and may not always be offered.
For example, the current Daily Rate is $339 (before taxes) at the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa.
20% off the Daily rate means that you would pay ~$271 ($339 less 20% or $68).
This is less than the Advance Purchase rate of $288! And you do not have to pay in full in advance (like you normally have to with the Advance Purchase rate) and can cancel the booking without a penalty as long as you cancel it within the cancellation period.
Points Now Expire in 24 Months
Currently, your Hyatt points stays active as long as there’s activity in your Hyatt account within 12 months.
And you lose your points if there’s no activity on your account for 12 months.
But, beginning January 7, 2014, Hyatt is extending the inactivity period from 12 months to 24 months.
This is a welcome change, but if you read Million Mile Secrets, you know that you can keep your hotel points active very easily!
The Points + Cash, 20% discount to elite members, and extending the amount of time before your points expire from 12 months to 24 months are welcome changes to the Hyatt program!
I only wish that the Points & Cash option was available all the time, just like with standard room redemptions.