Hyatt has been pretty busy over the past few months. They announced a completely new loyalty program, World of Hyatt. The goal was to focus more on the experience, rather than just transactional loyalty. They revised a number of key benefits, including making top-tier Globalist status more rewarding for road warriors. Along the way, they also increased the benefits for lifetime Globalist members. I was especially pleased by this as I just crossed the finish line on lifetime status. I was also pretty excited to announce this morning that Hyatt is inviting me to give away a year’s worth of Globalist status.
Hyatt hinted along the way that they were going to be releasing access to some special experiences for members. Today, they announced the first big experience you can redeem points for. Tokyo is the location, and here’s a brief description of what to expect:
This is the first time AFAR Experiences has partnered with a hotel brand to offer a trip just for its loyalty group members, plus it’s the first time AFAR Experiences will visit Tokyo. This exclusive opportunity will include dining with innovative chefs, discussing art with curators, and learning from local experts who are engrained in the fabric of Tokyo.
There are a total of 75 spots available. You can redeem points or pay cash in the following manners:
- 200,000 World of Hyatt points includes one AFAR Experiences Tokyo registration and one standard room at Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills (single occupancy) for four nights.
- 300,000 World of Hyatt points includes two AFAR Experiences Tokyo registrations and one standard room at Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills (double occupancy) for four nights
- The cost for the trip is $3,900 USD (airfare, transportation and accommodations not included). If members who book via credit card would like to stay at Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills, there will be a discounted rate available (website will take you to page to make reservations.
To be clear, you’re responsible for your own airfare and transportation to the origination point of the tour. I assume that’s at the Andaz, but there are a bunch of details still being nailed down.
You’ll need to submit your information and wait for confirmation. That means the experience could sell out if you wait too long. The only thing I’d caution is to check out the website before committing. There’s not a ton of detail about the actual experience so far. And, canceling is likely to incur you some pretty steep penalties, so be sure to read through all the details before committing.
Is This A Good Value?
Not everyone has an extra 200,000 or 300,000 World of Hyatt points lying around. If you do, is this a good value? Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills is a Category 6 hotel which means you’ll need 25,000 points a night for a free room. That means you’re spending 100,000 points for each person to attend the AFAR Experiences tour.
I value World of Hyatt points somewhere between 1.5 cents and 2 cents a piece. That means 100,000 points is worth somewhere between $1,500 and $2,000 to me. If you’re willing to pay $3,900 for the package, then using points is a really good value. And, for road warriors with big point balances (looking at you in the mirror, Ed) it can be a great way to get something other than just a free hotel stay.
When people use buzz words like “dining with innovative chefs”, it’s a pretty easy “yes, please” for me.
The Final Two Pennies
I really love experiences as a redemption option. One of the best times I’ve ever had redeeming points was when my wife got a tennis lesson from Andre Agassi at the US Open. That’s why I’m so glad to see Hyatt getting into the business of offering these sort of once-in-a-lifetime experiences to their members.
I’m seriously contemplating plunking down 300,000 points for my wife and I to go. I haven’t been to Tokyo in years (I was lucky enough to win a trip there 5 years ago). Spending time at the Tsukiji fish market was one of the truly memorable experiences from my life of travel. I’ve never stayed at the Andaz, but really loved the Park Hyatt Tokyo. I’d love to add the Andaz to my list of Hyatt hotels visited. I’d also love to have another swing at experiencing that marvelous city. Maybe I’ll see you there!
World of Hyatt Launches Their First Experience You Can Redeem Points For was published first on Pizza in Motion