Best use of Hyatt free night certs?

If you recently made a move to sign up for the Hyatt credit card before the “2 free night” version of the sign up bonus ended and you find yourself in possession of two free night certificates, there is a new option at which to redeem those certs for a ton of value: Miraval Resort.

Great use of free night certificates

As you may have read, Miraval Resort recently joined World of Hyatt. Travel Codex reports that you can use the 2 free night certificates from the credit card sign up bonus for double occupancy here. That is a fantastic deal. While the “best” use of your free night certs is completely subjective, this has to be one of the best at the very least. That’s because:

  • All meals and snacks are included
  • You get a $175 resort credit per person, per day
  • Double occupancy normally requires 65,000 Hyatt points per night

Yes, you read that right — 65,000 points per night for double occupancy….though, keep in mind that you’ll receive $350 total in resort credit for the night ($175 each). In case you missed it, Hyatt also recently introduced a new clause in their terms that basically says that some hotels won’t have categories and therefore won’t be bound by the traditional numbers of points required for a room. At Miraval, those rates are pretty high:

  • 45,000 Hyatt points/night for a standard room with single occupancy
  • 65,000 Hyatt points/night for a standard room with double occupancy
  • 75,000 Hyatt points/night for a suite with single occupancy
  • 95,000 Hyatt points/night for a suite with double occupancy

That said, the place looks pretty cool. There are tons of free activities included every day, and apparently tipping is neither required nor expected — and according to Travel Codex may even be prohibited. See the activity schedule to get an idea of the kinds of things offered. It looks like only activities with a dollar sign have an additional charge — the vast majority of activities don’t (and you could use your daily credit towards those that do).

And while the number of points required are sky-high, so are the rates. Here is the cheapest weekend I found next month in the lowest-category room that comes with the free meals and $175 per-person-per-night credit if paying the cash rate.

Good news for World of Hyatt members

And there is a bunch of good news for Hyatt members: there are no resort fees on award stays, and Globalist members can use suite upgrade awards. I’m not sure which type of suite they book into (unfortunately, when I called Hyatt to inquire, it was too early Arizona time to either check for award availability or answer questions about which suite you you would receive). However, the two cheapest suites available that same weekend came to more than $4300 for two nights. That’s not a bad value for the points.

Discounted rates through 9/15

And the hits keep coming for World of Hyatt members: for stays through September 15th, 2017, the award prices are 50% off. That means the following rates apply for stays before 9/15:

  • 22,500 Hyatt points/night for a standard room with single occupancy
  • 32,500 Hyatt points/night for a standard room with double occupancy
  • 37,500 Hyatt points/night for a suite with single occupancy
  • 47,500 Hyatt points/night for a suite with double occupancy

Since Globalist Suite Upgrade Awards can be applied to points stays, that means that a Globalist could book double occupancy in a suite for 32,500 points per night plus a suite upgrade award. Bundled with $175 per-person in resort credits per night, that’s a great value. Of course, suite upgrade awards can not be applied to the Hyatt free night certificates that come with the credit card. However, as a Globalist, my play on that would be to book a couple of nights on points and attach the suite upgrade to them and book the immediately following 2 nights with the Hyatt certificates. The resort might still make you switch rooms — but you would at least have a shot at keeping the suite.

No-go on other types of free certificates

Unfortunately, other types of free certificates, like the Category 1-7 that Globalists were gifted or the type you earn from staying at the many different brands can not be used. I presume that’s because those certificates are labeled as “Category 1-7” and this hotel has no category.

Bottom Line

This looks like a great use of the Hyatt free night certificates that came with the previous sign up bonus on the Hyatt credit card. Unfortunately, we don’t know of any working links to that previous offer. With the inclusion of Miraval, one has to wonder if this is one of the reasons for the change in the sign up bonus. Still, if you have 2 free night certificates and you’re looking to use them for domestic travel, this could be a fantastic value.

H/T: Travel Codex

About Nick Reyes

Nick Reyes is a (fairly) regular guy with an animalistic passion for maximizing the value of miles and money to travel the world in comfort and style. There is little in life that he loves more than finding a fantastic deal and helping you shop smarter & harder to achieve your travel dreams.

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Comments

  1. Does double occupancy include kids for free (both under 5 yo)? Not sure about that with this all-inclusive. Thank!

    • Not sure why it is not mentioned that this is an adults only(over 18 years old) resort like Zilara. No kids resort

  2. We are using my husbands 2 free nights for Spring Break at the Hyatt Ziva in Jamaica next year (with our 6 year old ). I am a Globalist and added on 2 nights on points at the beginning. I am pretty excited about it, although Miraval sounds awesome. I don’t have the points to add on 2 nights to a Miraval stay.

  3. We used our free nights at the Zilara in Jamaica. It was incredible, one of the nicest hotels I’ve been to in my life.

  4. in the category of flying under the radar, a very NEW idea for using the Cat 1-4 “free night” (from annual renewal bonus) might well be the new Hyatt House at Virginia Beach (on the beach). Just stayed there on a lark, day before my cert. was to expire…….. didn’t even know it was there. Every room faces the ocean, on the board (concrete) walk….

    Only huge problem there is parking…. Oh I could write a doozy of a review. 😉

  5. I called Hyatt and they said the miraval does NOT qualify for the 2 free nights, did you guys actually check before posting this?

    • Alan B…Miraval DOES qualify for the 2 free nights. I know because I just booked it. The confusion is that Hyatt reps themselves are not able to book it. Because this is an unusual property, their quirky booking procedure requires you to call Miraval to make the booking. Miraval then places a temporary hold on your reservation until it confirms with Hyatt that you have award certificates. 48 hours later, I received an emailed confirmation from Miraval finalizing my free nights. So between my wife’s 2 free nights and my 2 free nights, we ‘re staying 4 nights absolutely free (no taxes or resort fees) at an outstanding all-inclusive resort that normally charge $1k+/night.

      • This is key in making the reservation since I called Hyatt directly and there was nothing they could do. I called MIRAVAL and they were able to book it.

        HOWEVER, they gave me a dreamcatcher king bed and it seems I was charged for half the room. What kind of room did you have on your reservation?

    • No. I don’t think I’ve ever paid tax on a full award stay with any of the major chains. The room rate is $0, so any percentage on that is $0.

      I take that back — I remember Milan had a city “environmental tax” that was like $1 per person per night or something like that and I remember something similar in the Maldives. Maybe I have run into the rare occasion like that where a city has levied a specific small dollar figure that is unrelated to the room rate, but generally taxes are $0 and that extra tax was negligible.

      If you make a cash & points booking, you’ll pay tax on the cash portion.

  6. Native Spirit Room. That’s the room that’s included with the Hyatt certificate. If it’s not available, they charge for the upgrade, which is apparently what happened to you. Ask them to look for availability for Native Spirit.

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