How did we get a $6,387 stay at the 5-star Andaz Maui for FREE? We redeemed 90,000 Hyatt points.
Honolulu was great and cheap for us. Sandra (aka Zuzu) & I got a 5 night stay worth $2,373 at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach for free by redeeming 100,000 Hyatt points.
In December, we had a 4 night holiday trip to NYC, staying at the ultra luxurious Park Hyatt NYC and the bougie-like-that Andaz Fifth Avenue for free.
We redeemed 110,000 Hyatt points at these 2 hotels to make our $4,382 hotel (& $437 hotel breakfast) bill disappear.
For our anniversary, we took a 4 night trip to the all inclusive Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall in Jamaica.
Wonderful food & drinks were all free thanks to 100,000 Hyatt points instead of $2,436 in cash.
See a pattern?
Learning to Travel for Free
When we started down this path in December 2020, I never dreamed that we would be able to take Once-In-A-Lifetime trips every few months for free.
When I applied for my first rewards credit card, I remember telling Sandra that “I think we’ll be able to travel to Europe in a year or so for free.”
She didn’t really believe me, but this wasn’t one of the more ridiculous claims that she’s heard.
While COVID has kept us in this hemisphere, earning points and miles through responsible credit card usage has WAAAYYYY exceeded our expectations of free travel.
I really want to share what I’ve learned. You, too, can stay for free at luxury hotels and resorts just like Zuzu & I have been doing!
We Get To Travel with Hyatt Points
Earning free nights in the World of Hyatt loyalty program has been the single biggest reason that We Get To Travel.
Since early 2021, we’ve earned and redeemed over 800,000 Hyatt points. That’s 32 free nights in really nice hotels in 3 different countries.
Wait, what? 2020 Ross & Zuzu say:
“No way, that’s crazy, never gonna happen.”
Like I said earlier, that’s way more than we were expecting. But it did happen.
Start with Realistic Expectations
I started with the expectation that we could earn 1 nice trip in a year and I think that was key for us.
So here’s my offer to you: Let me help you get 1 nice trip for free.
Would you like to earn 4 or 5 FREE nights at luxury hotels? It’ll probably take about 6 months.
Here’s how to earn 100,000 Hyatt points and get your first free luxury vacation.
How to Earn Free Nights at Hyatt
Join the World of Hyatt Loyalty Program
There are 3 different ways that you can earn 100,000 Hyatt points to get a free hotel in paradise like we did.
For all of this to work, you have to join the World of Hyatt loyalty program (it’s free to join) and earn Hyatt points by:
Stay at Hyatt Properties or Not
I’ve been able to earn some Hyatt points by staying at Hyatt while on business trips.
That certainly helps earn more points but you really don’t have to spend any money on Hyatt stays if you don’t want to.
For most people, the best approach is to get 2 credit cards and earn at least 100,000 points via signup bonuses in about 6 months.
If the signup bonus is still 60,000 points on this Hyatt card, you’ll earn 3 nights at a wonderful resort like the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach for free. Make sure you hit the target spend of $3,000 on the card in 3 months to earn the signup bonus.
For Zuzu & me, it was pretty easy to put at least $1000 of spending on a new credit card like this.
If you’ve got a business, you can get even more points with the Hyatt Business card. It’s not uncommon to see a signup bonus of 75,000 points for spending $7500 in the 1st 3 months.
The secret to earning alot of points is in the signup bonuses. Make sure that you don’t come up short on the required spend or you’ll miss out!
Don’t buy anything that you wouldn’t already purchase. Just put your normal spending on your new credit card.
Important: Don’t get a second credit card until you have earned the bonus on the 1st card.
Wait at least 30 days after getting the 1st card before you apply for a second card!
Second, get the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card.
If the Chase Sapphire Preferred signup bonus is still 60,000 points, that’s enough for 3 free nights at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach after you’ve spent $4,000 on the card in 3 months.
Once you earn the Chase points, just transfer them to your World of Hyatt account when you’re ready to book your free stay. There are thousands of Hyatt properties around the world where you can stay for free!
That’s exactly what I did once I found dates that had award availability at the hotel and that we could travel to Hawaii on our latest trip!
How to Find Free Nights at Hyatt Luxury Hotels
Not every hotel has free rooms available on every night. Sometimes you have to dig a little to find available dates that will work with your schedule.
Search Dates at Hyatt Website
Start by picking an area that you want to visit at Hyatt.com. Plug in the dates that you’re considering and see if there are hotels or resorts available. Here’s what I did to find free nights at an all inclusive Hyatt resort in Jamaica.
Looking for 4 nights in late August, it looks like both the Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall & the Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall have free award nights available. These properties are connected so you can book either & have access to both.
For our 28th anniversary, we stayed at the Hyatt Zialra Rose Hall. It was wonderful!
Now, let’s check their rooms.
Select A Free Room
Hyatt has peak & off peak pricing for points stays. The normal rate on these rooms is 25,000 points but 3 of my 4 nights are off-peak and only 21,000 points.
I’ll save 12,000 points and get 4 free nights at this all inclusive resort for only 88,000 Hyatt points!
Four glorious days at a spectacular beach front, all-inclusive Hyatt resort for 88,000 points instead of $1,892 cash. What a great deal!
Move Chase Points into Hyatt Account
If you don’t have enough points in your World of Hyatt account to cover the total, you can move points from your Chase Ultimate Rewards account to Hyatt.
Points transfer from Chase to Hyatt instantly so you can wait until you’re literally ready to book before moving points.
Coordinate Your Flight before you Book
A free night in paradise isn’t great if you overpay to get there. So make sure you’ve got affordable (or free) flights before you book your free Hyatt stay.
When we went to Jamaica for our anniversary, we both flew for free.
I paid for my flight with Southwest points (which you can also transfer from Chase points) and Zuzu flew for free on her Southwest Companion Pass.
Sometimes it can be tricky to align free nights at a Hyatt with good deals on flights.
The best place to find good flight deals is on Google Flights.
You can either find cheap flights first and then find free Hyatt nights, or the other way around.
How Much are Hyatt Points Worth?
With all this talk about points and free nights, you may be wondering how much is a Hyatt point worth?
The answer is: It Depends.
Hyatt points, on average, are worth about 1.5 – 2 cents each. But it depends because Hyatt does not directly tie their points to cash. Each hotel requires a certain number of points for their standard rooms. And the cash price of the room can vary due to seasonality and demand.
For our recent trips, Hyatt points were actually worth:
- 6.7 cents at the Andaz Maui
- 2.4 cents at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach
- 5.1 cents at the Park Hyatt NYC
- 2.6 cents at the Andaz Fifth Avenue in NYC
- 2.4 cents at the Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall in Jamaica
- 2.7 cents at the Hyatt Centric Downtown Nashville
- 6.1 cents at the Hyatt Place Knoxville Downtown
For these recent trips, we’ve averaged more like 3-4 cents value for each Hyatt point.
So, to me, 100,000 Hyatt points are worth about $2000 – $3000 because I know that I’ll get 3, 4 or 5 nights at a VERY nice Hyatt. The value might be lower or higher for you.
But no matter what, these 3 steps will get that 1 nice trip for you for free:
What’s the Catch?
First things first, if you can’t pay off a credit card on-time, every single month, DO NOT get any credit card.
The interest and fees will quickly outpace any benefit that you get from this credit card (or from any other credit card).
Second, if you click through my link on this page and get a credit card, I’ll get a referral bonus of points from the credit card company.
Recommending good deals like this is part of how WE GET TO TRAVEL now that we’re empty nesters.
How Can I Help You Travel?
Got a question about getting started or what’s best for your situation?
I’m happy to help. Let me know here or on Instagram or on Facebook. I’ll do my best to help you earn your first free trip!
Want to learn our exact process? Click here to download our 14 page eBook “Guide to Free Luxury Travel!”