We learned late yesterday evening that Hyatt had brought points + cash bookings online, which was great news to see. But, that didn’t seem to be all the news for Hyatt today.
They’ve announced on InsideFlyer this morning that “Guest of Honor” benefits will continue in 2016. They also provided confirmation that:
- Points + cash rates should be showing for all properties currently offering them right now.
- That you can now process upgrades to Club and Grand rooms using points online.
- And that you can cancel award bookings online.
We knew of these changes earlier in the day, but the extension of “Guest of Honor” for 2016 is a new bit. What’s Guest of Honor? That’s where Diamond members get to extend their status to someone when they book their room using points from their own account, including benefits like:
- Free lounge access (or breakfast in the hotel restaurant if there’s no lounge).
- Guaranteed late check-out
- Welcome amenity
- Faster internet
I’ve also gotten my fair share of upgrades, but those aren’t guaranteed. Savvy travelers can manage some of these things on their own, but “Guest of Honor” legitimized the practice and made it a guarantee that those benefits would be honored.
There are bigger benefits offered to Diamonds (like those awesome suite upgrades), but it really is nice to be able to extend these benefits to someone when you’re giving them a free hotel stay. I recently sent a friend on his honeymoon and put him with a different chain that does not provide a benefit like this. It would have been special to be able to have an amenity waiting for him and free breakfast during his stay. Those benefits have real value, especially when you’re staying at a property where it’s difficult to leave for breakfast.
I don’t want to seem greedy, but I’ll still be hoping Santa puts just one more gift under the tree from Hyatt this year. I’d love to be able to use my Diamond suite upgrades on awards.