I have to commend Hyatt for thinking outside the box with this gesture…
Hyatt offering points for non-refundable reservations
In light of the coronavirus situation, many people are uncomfortable traveling. However, we haven’t seen any of the major hotel groups just completely drop their cancelation policies. They’ve done so regionally, but that’s about it.
That’s where Hyatt’s promotion comes into play. For those who booked Hyatt advance purchase (non-refundable) reservations, World of Hyatt is offering 10K bonus points per reservation if you no longer wish to travel.
The idea is that it’s not practical for Hyatt to outright refund all bookings in regions that don’t have advisories, but Hyatt at least wants to offer something to those who no longer wish to travel:
- This is valid for reservations made before March 8, 2020, and for stays through June 30, 2020
- If you no longer wish to travel, just contact Hyatt by phone, or at [email protected], and you’ll be given 10,000 points for each advance purchase reservation you no longer wish to use
- You won’t be refunded any cash for these bookings, but will get points
- You must cancel at least 48 hours before check-in
- This is even valid for those who weren’t World of Hyatt members; they can sign up for the program and still get points
- For regions where Hyatt does have a waiver, you can of course cancel your booking for a refund, but then you don’t get the points
Personally I value World of Hyatt points at ~1.5 cents each so to me that’s like $150 worth of points for every stay you no longer plan on using. Of course I’m sure many of us are now wishing we had booked dozens of stays at sub-$100 per night Hyatts. 😉
My take on this offer from Hyatt
On balance Hyatt has been generous in light of coronavirus. World of Hyatt was one of the first hotel groups to announce that they’d extend status for those in certain parts of Asia. On top of that, Hyatt is allowing free cancelations of bookings in Greater China, Japan, South Korea, and Italy.
What Hyatt is doing here is the most generous and creative concept I’ve seen from any of the global hotel groups when factoring in that this applies for stays anywhere.
In general I don’t expect hotel groups to have quite the generous cancelation policies of airlines. That’s because a vast majority of airline fares are non-refundable, while with hotels there are typically reasonable refundable fares, and when you book a non-refundable fare you’re choosing to save a bit in exchange for less flexibility.
This is different than airline tickets, where a non-refundable ticket may cost $100, while a refundable ticket may cost $1,000.
If you have a non-refundable Hyatt stay that you booked prior to yesterday and that’s for travel through June 30, 2020, you can contact Hyatt and get 10K points for canceling the reservation (though you don’t get a refund).
Obviously this is ridiculously lucrative for a one night stay at a cheap hotel, while it’s less lucrative for a $20K+ stay at one hotel.
I commend Hyatt for thinking outside the box here. It would be nice to see more of a global hotel waiver, though realistically Hyatt’s actions here are the most generosity we’ve seen from a hotel group without any sort of geographic restrictions.
Does anyone plan on taking advantage of Hyatt’s 10K points offer for non-refundable bookings?