While the most popular way to redeem World of Hyatt points is for free night redemptions, the program also has a Points + Cash option, whereby you can redeem part points and part cash toward the cost of a hotel stay.
The reality is that the value of Hyatt Points + Cash has fluctuated significantly over the years — from 2014 to 2018, it was almost exclusively how I redeemed my points. Then in 2018 it was devalued to the point of being useless, while in 2020 it became a bit more useful again. That’s because as of 2020, the cash component started being discounted more for lots of Points + Cash redemptions.
So, is Hyatt Points + Cash worth considering nowadays? Let’s take an updated look.
The basics of Hyatt’s Points + Cash program
As the name suggests, with Hyatt Points + Cash, you can redeem part points and part cash toward the cost of a Hyatt stay. More specifically, you’ll redeem 50% of the points required for a stay, and will receive a 50-70% discount off the standard rate for the room type chosen.
Now, there are some important things to be aware of:
- Points + Cash stays are capacity controlled, unlike free night award stays, where there are no blackout dates or capacity controls on standard rooms
- The cash portion of the Points + Cash rate is payable at the hotel at check-out, and is subject to the same percentage taxes & fees you’d pay on a revenue stay
- You earn World of Hyatt points for the cash portion of a Points + Cash stay; with World of Hyatt you earn 5x points per dollar spent, plus elite bonuses of 10-30%, and those base points count toward elite status, including lifetime Globalist status
- You earn elite nights for Points + Cash stays, just as you would if paying cash or redeeming points
- World of Hyatt waives resort & destination fees on points stays for all members, and waives parking fees for Globalist members on award stays; for these purposes, a Points + Cash reservation isn’t considered an award stay
- You can’t make a World of Hyatt Guest of Honor booking using Points + Cash
Just as a reminder, below is the standard room World of Hyatt award chart, which shows the award pricing for off-peak, standard, and peak periods. When booking Points + Cash, you’d pay half of the points, plus 30-50% of the flexible revenue rate.
Crunching the numbers on Hyatt Points + Cash
With the basics of Hyatt Points + Cash out of the way, let’s do some number crunching. Let me state upfront that I conservatively value World of Hyatt points at 1.5 cents each, though I usually get quite a bit more value out of them in comparison to what a hotel stay would cost with cash.
For the purposes of the below example, I’ll simply be comparing the cost for a free night redemption to the cost of a Points + Cash redemption. This doesn’t consider the outright cost of a stay if paying cash, so for more on that, see my post about when you should redeem points for a hotel stay.
I picked six hotels at random, belonging to different brands and in different regions. Let’s take a look at what I found.
The Hyatt Place Tampa Downtown is charging 12,000 points per night, or 6,000 points plus $100. You’re spending $100 to save 6,000 points, which is like buying Hyatt points for 1.67 cents each.
The Andaz West Hollywood is charging 20,000 points per night, or 10,000 points plus $221. You’re spending $221 to save 10,000 points, which is like buying Hyatt points for 2.21 cents each.
The Hyatt Centric Dubai Jumeirah is charging 12,000 points per night, or 6,000 points plus $69. You’re spending $69 to save 6,000 points, which is like buying Hyatt points for 1.15 cents each.
The Hyatt Place Dubai Jumeirah is charging 3,500 points per night, or 1,750 points plus $109. You’re spending $109 to save 1,750 points, which is like buying Hyatt points for 6.22 cents each.
The Grand Hyatt Seoul is charging 15,000 points per night, or 7,500 points plus $116. You’re spending $116 to save 7,500 points, which is like buying Hyatt points for 1.55 cents each.
The Park Hyatt Sydney is charging 40,000 points per night, or 20,000 points plus $285 (with today’s exchange rate). You’re essentially spending $285 to save 20,000 points, which is like buying Hyatt points for 1.43 cents each.
So… is Hyatt Points + Cash worth it?
As you can see, the value of Hyatt Points + Cash varies significantly. In the above six examples I randomly pulled up, you’re essentially “buying” Hyatt points for anywhere from 1.15 cents to 6.22 cents each (these aren’t actually points in your account, but rather you’re spending some amount of cash in lieu of points).
I have to be honest, for the past several years I’ve kind of not even looked at the Points + Cash section when making Hyatt bookings, since the value was consistently bad for so long. However, it would appear that there are again frequently situations where Points + Cash is a good deal.
Before you make a final decision, just keep in mind:
- What the taxes & fees are for the cash portion of the Points + Cash booking, which will show on the final booking page
- Factor in the World of Hyatt points you’d earn for the cash portion of the Points + Cash booking, which improves the math even further
- If a property has a resort or destination fee and you’re not a Globalist member, then there’s a huge advantage to outright redeeming for a free night award, so that’s waived
- Keep in mind the opportunity cost of a Points + Cash booking; for example, if I’m booking a luxury property, I may prefer to outright redeem points for one night and then pay cash through the Hyatt Privé program for the other night, so I receive extra perks
Lastly, let me just mention that in many cases Points + Cash is a better value compared to redeeming points outright in situations where the cash rate is lower than usual, and a hotel is in low season. In those situations it might not make sense to redeem points at all. This comes down to how reimbursement for these awards works between World of Hyatt and individual hotels.
Hyatt Points + Cash lets you redeem part points and part cash toward the cost of a hotel stay. While this isn’t the consistently great value that it once was, there are situations where Points + Cash is a good deal, so this is definitely something to keep in mind when making bookings, as it’s worth crunching the numbers. This could also be worth it if you have a small number of points you want to redeem for a hotel stay.
What’s your take on Hyatt’s Points + Cash option? Do you ever use it?