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With travelers rethinking their loyalty plans, the major hotel programs are competing fiercely to win long-term customers. In addition to drastically reducing elite qualification requirements for this year, hotels are running some of the most lucrative promotions we’ve seen. But perhaps the most exciting elite status earning opportunity comes from World of Hyatt.
Hyatt cut its elite qualification thresholds in half for 2021, rolled over some tier-qualifying nights from last year and is offering double tier-qualifying nights for stays through February under the Bonus Journeys promotion. Plus, it provides World of Hyatt Credit cardholders extra elite night credits every year. This makes earning top-tier Globalist status this year easier than ever.
Hyatt Globalist usually requires 60 nights per year, but with the reduced requirements, you can achieve it with just 15 nights under the Bonus Journeys promotion or 13 nights if you have the World of Hyatt card. If you have nights rolling over from last year, you could earn top-tier status even faster.
Globalist status is arguably the most valuable hotel elite status tier there is. When fully maximized, it could provide over $5,000 in value per year. Perks include waived resort and parking fees, free (full) breakfast for up to two adults and two children per room, lounge access, suite upgrades and more. So, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that many travelers are going out of their way to take advantage of this fast-track opportunity.
Keep in mind it’s not just paid nights that earn elite credits; award nights do as well. From staycations to mattress runs, status matches and more, here’s how TPG staff and readers are earning Globalist status for crazy cheap.
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Road tripping stays
If what you want right now is some socially-distanced wide open spaces, then maybe a road trip is your agenda.
TPG’s Becca Manheimer recently traveled to Vail, Colorado for a winter getaway. On the way there, she road-tripped from El Paso to Albuquerque to Colorado Springs, and beyond stopping at Category 1 Hyatt Place properties in each of the cities.
Being a World of Hyatt Credit cardholder, Becca already had five tier-qualifying nights under her belt, so she only needed 13 nights under the Bonus Journeys double nights promotion to unlock Globalist status at 30 nights in 2021. Since World of Hyatt award bookings earn elite credit just as paid nights do, she decided to book her stays on points. Category 1 hotels are the least expensive in Hyatt’s portfolio and cost just 5,000 points per night.
However, another perk of the Bonus Journeys promotion (registration ended on Jan. 15) is that cobranded cardholders get a 25% rebate on redemptions. So, altogether, Becca earned Globalist status (and got to go on an awesome road trip) for just 48,750 World of Hyatt points, worth about $829 based on TPG valuations.
TPG reader Christopher Conard had a similar strategy but boosted his World of Hyatt balance by transferring points from Chase Ultimate Rewards.
“5,000 points per night in Austin/Dallas. 13 nights needed for Globalist (five night credits from credit card). 25% rebate per promotion = 48,750 points. Even if I had to transfer from Chase UR this is only $731.25 worth in points (at $0.015 per point, absolute minimum valuation) for two weeks of hotel + Globalist.” — TPG reader Christopher Conard
Related: What are mattress runs, and how do they work?
With travel still on the back burner for many, you can still take advantage of this opportunity without hitting the open road (or skies). Your easiest way to earn elite night credits may be to book a staycation. TPG’s Summer Hull and Victoria Walker, along with a number of TPG Lounge members, booked cheap stays close to home.
Summer, who is based in the Houston area, booked a Hyatt Place in Houston for about $60 per night plus taxes and fees, while NYC-based Victoria booked the Hyatt Place Times Square for about $67 per night before taxes and fees. Summer even wiped out the entire cost of her stay with fixed-value credit card points, so she paid no cash out-of-pocket.
Related: How I’m earning two years of rewarding top-tier Hyatt elite status after just 11 nights
While some people treat these stays as mini getaways, others are using the rooms as offices, enjoying the hotel’s amenities, such as a pool and gym. Just remember, Hyatt’s policy requires you to physically show up at a hotel at check-in — and complete the stay. Violating those rules can mean that Hyatt can forfeit your points and elite night earnings.
Additionally, a hotel may check you out early if they notice you’re not using the room. So — use the room.
“I have the Hyatt card, so I get additional incentives under Bonus Journeys, as well as five nights toward status. I carried over nights from 2020 accrued from Bonus Journeys and I am now booked at five properties before the end of February to hit globalist with double nights credits. We have a brand new Hyatt place close to home that is Category 1 (3,750 points with rebate) plus a higher-end Category 3 stay with points (to waive the parking) and a cash stay at a Category 2 close to home as well.” — TPG reader Chris Marburger
Related: Do you need to physically show up at a hotel to check-in?
Booking an “office for the day”
If you aren’t planning to sleep in your room, an option is to consider booking an “office for the day.” As a part of its Work From Hyatt packages, now through at least May 31, 2021, Hyatt is offering special Office for the Day rates at over 400 properties in the Americas.
Rates start at $65 per day and give guests access to a standard guest room from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. You get a dedicated workspace, complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi, 50% discount on self or valet parking, 15% discount on food and beverage, complimentary in-room bottled water, coffee and tea, in-room wellness offerings including Headspace meditations through the World of Hyatt app, access to hotel’s gym and pool were available and no-charge cancellation up to 24 hours before arrival.
Guests receive all of the typical elite benefits they’re entitled to and, perhaps more importantly for these purposes, will earn points and tier-qualifying credit. So, if you book this rate for 13 days during the Bonus Journeys promotion period, you could essentially buy Globalist status for as low as $845. and get a nice workspace in the meantime.
Secure lower rates
In addition to special rates like Office for the Day, you may be able to negotiate a special rate by contacting a property directly or looking for a price match.
“I was able to do a price match with the Hyatt for the Zilara Cap Cana.” — TPG reader Catherine Stevens
As a part of Hyatt’s guarantee, if you find a lower publicly available rate for the same stay within 24 hours of booking the stay directly with Hyatt, Hyatt will not only match the rate but give you either 20% off the rate you found or 5,000 bonus World of Hyatt points awarded 72 hours after checkout. So, even if the rate you find is only a couple of dollars cheaper per night, you could get an extra 20% discount this way.
To make a Hyatt best-rate guarantee claim, submit an online claim form or call 1-877-247-3909 within 24 hours after booking on hyatt.com. Unlike some other chains, Hyatt does permit best-rate claims using prices from websites that require a membership, so long as that membership is free.
Related: The state of the hotel best rate guarantee
Consider a status match
Hyatt tends to be on the conservative side with status matches and challenges. However, it does pretty consistently offer two fast-track opportunities.
First, if you’re an elite in M life Rewards, the loyalty program of MGM Resorts, you can match your status to World of Hyatt elite status. This is an outright match, so you won’t need to complete any nights with Hyatt to enjoy your status. Pearl status match to World of Hyatt Discoverist and Gold, Platinum and NOIR match to World of Hyatt Explorist.
Second, Hyatt sometimes has “fast track” offers for American Airlines AAdvantage elites. The challenge requirements may vary from one member to the next and are only available to AAdvantage Platinum members or above. American Airlines’ invitation-only Concierge Key members get automatic Hyatt Globalist status,
Related: How a successful status challenge rekindled my love affair with Hyatt
As was mentioned, Hyatt rolled over some tier-qualifying nights from last year. Specifically, nights stayed under the Bonus Journeys promotion from Oct. 1 – Dec. 31 counted toward both 2020 and 2021 status earnings. So, you may already have a head start on status this year with stays from late last year.
TPG’s Chris Dong is already at 30 tier-qualifying nights from all of the rollover nights, so he was able to qualify for Globalist without any stays this year at all. He’s not the only one that earned it from 2020 stays either:
“Stayed 44 nights in Q4 2020 to get my Globalist in 2021. Can’t beat that amount.” — TPG reader Chris Leslie
“I already earned it from stays in 2020.” — TPG reader Dan Wolf
Related: How I saved 50,000 points and $400 in fees with this ongoing hotel promotion
2021 may be the easiest year ever to achieve World of Hyatt Globalist status. Even if you aren’t traveling much yet, Globalist status earned now is valid until Feb. 2023.
This coveted status that was once only attainable by true road warriors logging 60 nights on the road per year can now be earned on a single vacation and doesn’t have a spending requirement. Even if you don’t get much use of the extremely valuable status in the near future, you still have plenty of time to maximize benefits down the line.
Featured image of the Hyatt House Scottsdale/Old Town courtesy of Hyatt.
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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.