Hyatt free night certificates are some of the best benefits within the Hyatt program, especially since there are many ways to earn them. With two World of Hyatt Credit Cards in my family and my husband staying at Hyatt properties quite often for work (thus earning many milestone benefits), we are able to rack up a decent number of free night certificates on a yearly basis. Unfortunately, we have a few certificates that just expired and others that are about to expire. Due to the current state of the world with Coronavirus, we had to cancel trips were we intended to use them.
Fortunately though, Hyatt has been willing to work with their members to exchange those certificates into points. This is actually a process they’ve always had, but it wasn’t advertised and not a definite extended curtesy. In the past, usually it was those with top tier status that would receive the points, but now, everyone should be able to receive this good will gesture.
As a quick recap, here are the ways to earn Hyatt free night certificates:
- World of Hyatt Credit Card and the old Hyatt Credit Card receive a free night certificate annually on their account anniversary (category 1-4, expires 1 year)
- Spend $15,000 on your World of Hyatt Credit Card during your cardmember year (category 1-4, expires 1 year)
- Complete 30 qualifying nights or earn 50,000 base points (category 1-4, expires 180 days)
- Complete 60 qualifying nights or earn 100,000 base points (category 1-7; expires 180 days)
- Stay at 5 different brands with the Brand Explorer award — you can only earn these once an account lifetime (category 1-4; expires 1 year)
Exchanging free night certificate for points
Hyatt will no longer extend your free night certificates, regardless of your status. (This is a perk of the Marriott program though as Marriott will gladly extend your free night certificate for another year). Instead, Hyatt is currently willing to exchange your free night certificate into points. There is no set policy, but right now, it seems like as long as you reach out and ask, the points are yours. To ask for the points, you’ll have to call Hyatt directly. You can always ask via Twitter or your Ambassador as well (if you have one). Tip: You have to wait until after your free night certificate expires. Hyatt will not do anything beforehand, so do not waste your time.
You’ll also not receive the full point value. The category 1-4 free night certificates can be redeemed at a World of Hyatt property that costs up to 15,000 points, but you’ll only receive 10,000 points during the exchange process. A category 1-7 free night certificates can be redeemed at a World of Hyatt property that costs up to 30,000 points, but you’ll only end up with 20,000 points. This is definitely a devaluation on your certificate, but something is better than nothing. I also value 10k points to be worth about $200, so I am still coming out ahead with the annual fee costing less than $100 per year.
I personally was able to exchange a category 1-4 free night certificate last fall for 10,000 points. This was before Coronavirus invaded our world. Now, just a few days ago I was able to go through the same process again. Last time I called Hyatt directly, but this time I was able to get the points via Twitter. With no questions asked, they deposited 10,000 points to my account.
In a normal world, my suggestion would be to try to figure out a way to redeem your free night certificate, even if you are not maximizing it at a category 4 property. Use that category 1-4 certificate at a category 3. Same goes for a category 1-7 certificate, where you are better off using it at a category 6 than the point value.
What has been your experience with your unredeemed Hyatt free night certificates?
World of Hyatt Credit Card: Earn up to 50,000 bonus points — 25,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening, plus an additional 25,000 bonus points after you spend $6,000 total on purchases within the first 6 months of account opening. Receive a category 1-4 free night certificate every cardmember year.
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Featured photo courtesy of Booking.com