The Hyatt Credit Card
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For fans of the Hyatt brand, The Hyatt Credit Card offers some great perks like one night free annually and some terrific redemption values on rooms starting as low as 5,000 points. But if you can’t always stay within its portfolio of properties, this is probably not the right card for you.
The Hyatt Credit Card, issued by Chase Bank, recently underwent a sign-up makeover. It once was lauded for its introductory offer of two free nights at any property in the world after meeting a $2,000 spending requirement — the potential value of which far exceeded the $75 annual cost of ownership. But in June 2017, the issuer changed the offer to a 40,000 point sign-up bonus instead, which can be leveraged a number of different ways.
What those points are worth varies, as Hyatt assigns each of its properties a category, or ranking on a scale of 1 to 7 with Category 7 requiring the highest number of points (30,000) to redeem for a standard room for one night and Category 1 requiring the lowest (5,000).
We found, for example, a $126 room at the Hyatt House Colorado Springs that you could stay at for 5,000 points. Your points are worth about $0.025. The Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa costs $238 per night or 20,000 points; so each point used here is worth $0.01.
If you prefer higher-end properties, you may find the altered sign-up bonus offers less value. But if you’re more likely to use lower-priced or mid-tier hotels for your stays, you may be able to squeeze more value out of the new sign-up offer.
The card also comes with one free night at a Category 1-4 hotel after your cardmember anniversary. Enjoy Discoverist status, as well, which gives you a 10% points bonus on all your Hyatt stays and free premium Internet access during your stay.
Granted, this isn’t the most exciting rewards card. You will earn just 3 bonus points per $1 spent on all Hyatt hotels and resorts spending. But keep in mind that redemptions start at just 5,000 World of Hyatt points for a night, so it may not take much for you to rack up free reward nights.
Outside of Hyatt spend, there’s a decent rewards rate of 2 bonus points per $1 spent at restaurants, airfare purchased directly from the airline and car rental agencies. This rate is comparable to some of the top travel rewards cards available.
If collecting air miles is more important to you than World of Hyatt points, you can set your rewards preference to collect miles instead with one of Hyatt’s 27 airline partners.
The bottom line: If you like Hyatt-branded hotels, it’s worth the cost of ownership in the first year for the sign-up bonus alone. Longer-term, if you think you’ll use the one annual free night at a Category 1-4 hotel, this card should be in your wallet.
Who should get this card
This card is best for someone who wants to take advantage of the sign-up bonus and ongoing annual free-night stay or anyone who is loyal to Hyatt hotels and can benefit from the rewards structure.
Fees and APR
- Annual fee is $75.
- You’ll pay a variable 16.99% to 23.99% APR on purchases and balance transfers.
- Balance transfer fee is 5%.
- There are no foreign transaction fees on purchases made outside the U.S.
- Late payments won’t affect your APR, but you may be subject to a late fee of up to $37.
Extras, perks and using points
The Hyatt Credit Card comes with World of Hyatt Discoverist status, which entitles you to a 10% bonus on points for all eligible spending, 500 bonus points for renting a car with Avis, and room upgrades where available.
You’re also eligible for purchase and price protection benefits. This card also comes with auto and travel insurance and protections.
World of Hyatt points never expire and there’s no minimum redemption amount required. To redeem your points for free nights or toward room upgrades, or to redeem using a combination of points and cash, log into your World of Hyatt account and select the hotel and number of nights that fits your needs or redeem over the phone with a Hyatt booking agent.
The redemption terms and award charts can be found here.
How this card compares
The Starwood Preferred Guest Card from American Express is much-loved by points and miles strategists for its wide range of eligible airline transfer partners. Starpoints also can be transferred to Ritz-Carlton and Marriott properties, making it one of the most flexible credit card rewards currencies available.
The Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card is best for repeat Marriott customers who want to earn rewards toward more future stays. While the rewards rate at Marriott, SPG or Ritz-Carlton properties is strong, the card offers lackluster rewards on airfare booked through the airline and. The annual one free night certificate for a Category 1-5 hotel will likely make the annual cost of ownership for this card worth it to Marriott brand fans.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card‘s hefty sign-up bonus, boosted redemption value when using the Chase portal and a generous rewards program make this card a stand-out among travel rewards cards offering big value for minimal cost. Since Chase Ultimate Rewards points can be used for everything from flights to lodging to cruises, this also makes it one of the most flexible redemption programs among travel cards.
Opinions expressed here are 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.