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When I have the opportunity, I start my calendar year bouncing between cheap Hyatt properties to secure Hyatt Diamond status quickly on stays. I consider Hyatt Diamond the most lucrative status one can earn with only 25 check-ins. I was fortunate this year to complete my 25th stay this week earning me Hyatt status valid through February 2015.
Hyatt is tied for my favorite loyalty hotel program along with SPG. However, it is now February and I have no further incentive to stay with Hyatt. The program effectively runs out of gas after you hit the 25 stay mark and achieve Diamond. There are no further incentives to earn. This is where the Hyatt lags behind other programs specifically SPG. Beyond earning top tier Platinum status, SPG has incentives to reach 50 nights awarding 10 Suite Night Awards, 75 nights awarding 4th point bonus and even up to 100 nights awarding guests with a personal ambassador. I have had the Ambassador for a couple year now and have found it to be of little to no value but from a simple pleasures perspectives, I enjoy working towards the goal because it is there.
Before SPG launched Suite Night Awards, the program from my perspective was even more lucrative to those that were EXTREMELY LOYAL to the brand. I would focus my entire loyalty to SPG to run up my nights total and my complimentary suite upgrade percentage on award stays neared 100% for several years. From what I can tell, they were looking at who was checking in each night and awarding the best suites to those who had the highest nights total. This was never a formal program but it worked like clockwork when a few of my Platinum friends would all check into the same hotel.
Now that SPG has launched the Suite Night Awards program, I feel that has taken precedence. I believe the informal “The best suite goes to the member with the most nights this year” mentality still exists though it is a bit scaled back.
While Hyatt offers more options to confirm into a suite, they lack complimentary suite upgrades which compose the majority of the stays I want upgraded. The only confirmable points-only option requires three consecutive nights at the same hotel which is limiting.
The bottom line
I think it would greatly benefit the Hyatt Gold Passport program to add targets above Hyatt Diamond status to stay competitive with the SPG program targeting the extreme business travelers. Like I mentioned before, I don’t even care about having an SPG Ambassador, I just like having something to work towards. C’mon Hyatt! Give us something to work towards!