Hyatt Credit Card Elite Status Challenge: Worth It?

Hyatt just announced a special status challenge for Hyatt Visa cardholders: Between September 1 – December 30, 2017 registered cardholders can earn Explorist and Globalist status by completing a third of the normal required nights:

  • Explorist status: Complete 10 nights (normally 30 nights) 
  • Globalist status: Complete 20 nights (normally 60 nights)       

Normally, Hyatt Explorist status requires 30 nights, while Globalist requires 30. If you manage to earn status through this promotion, it will be good through February 2019. So is it worth mattress running as part of this Hyatt status challenge? That really depends on which status tier you’re going for and whether you actually intend to utilize the accompanying benefits.

Hotel lobby of Hyatt Place Chicago Downtown The Loop
The lobby of the Hyatt Place Chicago Downtown The Loop

Hyatt Explorist Status Benefits

I personally wouldn’t bother with Hyatt Explorist status. Explorist members get benefits like 2 PM checkout, waived resort fees, a free bottle of water daily, free premium wifi, and free room upgrades – excluding club rooms and suites. Those aren’t super amazing benefits – not compared to Hilton Hilton Gold, which you can get simply by having the Hilton Amex Surpass Card. I don’t know what an upgrade is if it doesn’t include a club room or suite. A room with a view? Near the elevator? Away from screaming kids? As a former top-tier Hyatt Diamond member, I got maybe two suite upgrades in three years. And when I didn’t get upgraded, I ended up in rooms with really terrible views.

The only notable benefit is that members get 4 club lounge upgrades every year. These upgrades are valid for stays of up to 7 nights each. In my experience, club rooms normally cost an extra $50 per night. So if you manage to redeem all four upgrades, you’re looking at around $200 – $1,400 worth of value. Whether this benefit is worth mattress running for depends on how much you spend on these mattress runs. We’ll get to that later…

Hyatt Globalist Status Benefits

Hyatt Globalist members get slightly better benefits than Explorist members. Elite perks include complimentary upgrade up to a standard suite (when available), club lounge access, waived resort fees, free bottled water, premium wifi, free parking on award nights and a series of rewards bonuses. What we care about here are the perks.

I frequently stay at the Grand Hyatt San Francisco on weekends, where parking costs an absurd $65 per night. Being able to get this waived as an elite benefit would be incredibly valuable. Free club lounge access at Hyatt hotels is also useful. In fact, this benefit has saved me tons of cash in the past. But is it worth completing 20 nights at a Hyatt Hotel? Let’s dive into the cost….

The Cost of Mattress Running During the Hyatt Credit Card Status Challenge

If you can complete the Hyatt status challenge based on actual, planned stays then it’s a no-brainer. However, if you’re going to mattress run the full 10 – 20 nights, then be aware of the cost. Mattress running 10 – 20 nights at a Hyatt hotel would set you back at least $900 – $1800 at the cheapest Category 1 Hyatt hotel (be sure to read how to book cheap mattress runs for tips on how to do this). Is it worth it?

If you can get at least $900 worth of savings out of the 4 club room upgrades as an Explorist member, then go for it. You’ll also earn tons of points and credit card rewards along the way. The same goes for spending $1,800+ to earn Hyatt Globalist status. There are no guaranteed suite upgrade awards, so the value of this elite tier will vary by member. It will also depend on whether/how often you get upgraded to a room you intended to pay extra for. Since club lounge access is guaranteed (valued at around $50 per night), consider whether you’ll stay at least 36 nights to get your minimum $1,800 investment back. 

Final Thoughts

I don’t have a Hyatt credit card, so this status challenge isn’t even an option for me. If I was an existing cardholder and given the opportunity to participate in this elite status challenge, I would definitely sign up and hope it coincides with actual travel plans. But I daintily wouldn’t mattress run to complete either status. If, however, you have an upcoming Hyatt stay where having status will save you more money than you’ll spend on mattress running, then go for it. 

Are you going to participate in this Hyatt Credit Credit status challenge? Why or why not?

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  1. I’m hoping your terminology isn’t a misspaelling but more a statement. I kinda like Exploits as it sure felt that way at the end of last year.

  2. I will be, but my plan is to do 33 nights to get to 60 for the confirmed Suite Upgrades (which you don’t get on this fast track plan). 100% on upgrades this year and free parking sometimes on paid stays.

  3. Mark Ostermann

    Wouldn’t it just be way cheaper to MS 50,000 on the credit card for the status.

  4. i wonder if this challenge works on MGM properties? Didn’t really say anything in the T&C’s.

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