If you ask any road warrior which hotel chain has the best rewards program, chances are they’re going tell you Hyatt. Many will tell you that Hyatt Hotels has been the most generous program when it comes to points and perks for the past several years.

Their only downfall is that they don’t have a huge portfolio like Marriott and Hilton but they’re working on growing it. In the past few years, they’ve either partnered or acquired other brands including Alila, Destination Hotels, Joie de Vivre, Thompson Hotels, Miraval and Mr. and Mrs. Smith.

What’s interesting is that before Marriott International acquired Starwood Hotels & Resorts in 2016, road warriors would have said that SPG had the best program. Well, it turns out some Starwood executives moved from Connecticut to Chicago to work for Hyatt. I learned this yesterday at Hyatt’s headquarters. I was there as a guest to get a sneak peek at their new, and surprisingly improved, rewards chart.

There are going to be more ways to redeem World of Hyatt Milestone Rewards starting January 1, 2024. Some of the possibilities include future free nights, suite upgrades, and wellbeing experiences at more frequent intervals. These changes provide more flexibility with lower elite status levels, beginning with Discoverist status.

Overhead view of the Park Hyatt Toronto room with a tent for the children. Credit: Johnny Jet

Flexible World of Hyatt Milestone Rewards Redemptions

The most notable change is having multiple Milestone Rewards redemption options starting with the first step. Currently, certain rewards tiers only have one reward and now there are at least three at each point.

World of Hyatt members will continue earning their first Milestone Rewards redemption opportunity after completing 20 nights or accumulating 35,000 base points. However, instead of only getting 2 Club Lounge Access Awards as the first reward, you have two additional rewards to choose from:

  • 2K Next Stay: Earn 2,000 bonus points on the next stay at a Hyatt Place, Hyatt House, Caption by Hyatt, or UrCove hotel.
  • $25 FIND Experience Credit: A $25 credit on any FIND experience worldwide. The credit value is between $25 and $300, depending on the Milestone Reward tier.

Rewards unlock for every 10 additional qualifying nights until you reach 150 nights per calendar year. The 150-night threshold is another impressive change as the current limit is 100 nights to max out the available Milestone Rewards per year.

Some of the other redemptions available at higher Milestone Rewards levels include:

  • Guest of Honor Award: Members can award themselves or another person Globalist benefits on either award or eligible paid stays. This award becomes available starting at 40 qualifying nights per year.
  • Miraval Extra Night: Stay one night at a Miraval resort and receive a complimentary second night.
  • Suite Upgrades: Receive one or two Suite Upgrade Awards instead of Club Access Rewards, starting with 40 nights or 65,000 base points.
  • The Ultimate Free Night Award: Enjoy one free night at any Category 1-8 hotel, Category A-F all-inclusive resort, or participating Miraval resort. This award is available at 150 nights, but smaller values are available at lower tiers, such as a Category 1-4 free night award after 30 nights or a Category 1-7 free night award after 60 free nights.

These benefit additions come as World of Hyatt’s membership has quadrupled over the past five years, says Mark Vondrasek, chief commercial office, Hyatt. “We’re proud to be adding, building, and evolving World of Hyatt to bring industry-leading changes that are redefining loyalty with our three guiding principles of care: loyalty extends beyond the member, choice is critical and recognition means everything, Vondrasek continues.”

You can compare the new Milestone Rewards options here.

Guest of Honor Benefit Becomes More Accessible

The World of Hyatt Guest of Honor benefits become available to all members as a Milestone Reward after reaching 40 qualifying nights or 65,000 base points. This benefit is currently only available to Globalist members who can gift it to non-Globalist members to enjoy elite travel perks on a stay.

As a Milestone Reward, it’s now possible for World of Hyatt Discoverist or Explorist members to use the perk for themselves or someone they care about to enjoy a taste of Hyatt Globalist status.

Through the Milestone Rewards program, members can earn up to 10 Guest of Honor Awards per year.

Revamped Business Travel Rewards

Eligible event planners, travel advisors, and small business administrators who make bookings on behalf of travelers will earn two qualifying night credits toward their tier status for every $5,000 in spend (up to $150,000 per year).

It’s possible to collect up to 60 qualifying night credits per year through this spending initiative. That’s enough credits to earn Globalist status. Business travel coordinators can earn or gift Milestone Rewards in addition to Globalist status after reaching the highest loyalty tier.

Starting in 2025, tier criteria will no longer be based on the number of qualifying meetings in a year for meeting and event planners.

Final Thoughts

Many leisure and business travelers consider World of Hyatt to be the best hotel loyalty program. These benefit additions and the abundance of places to stay are compelling reasons. More options are at your fingertips in 2024 to earn points, enjoy free nights, or treat yourself to Globalist benefits even if you’re at a lower membership tier.

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