Growing up I was a "kettle" flyer–one to two trips a year in the back of the economy cabin with no concept of elite status, frequent flyer perks, or mileage running.
When I was a teenager I had a "coming of age" where I learned how to play the frequent flyer game. I continue to learn and there is much I still do not know…
Although I have status with Starwood and Hyatt, when it comes to hotels I still generally classify myself as a "kettle" guest. After a disappointing stay at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego on Friday (full report later in the week), I’m reconsidering whether it is time to more seriously focus my efforts on attaining top-tier status with Hyatt or Starwood.
For years I have stayed in hostels when I travel alone or used Priceline’s "name your own price" feature to score a four star hotel room for $60-100/night when traveling with family or friends. This year has been a little different as I have taken advantage of Hyatt’s Big Welcome Back promotion and stayed at ten different Hyatt properties the last few months, earning Platinum status and enjoying perks like free internet, an occasional room upgrade, and most importantly the buy-one-get-one-free nights.
Still, I feel like a middle child at Hyatt and am frankly getting jealous 😉 of the large suites I see in other hotel reviews when I usually wind up with a tiny cubicle.
Just like I have never looked back after earning 1K status on United four years ago, I think the benefits of obtaining Hyatt Diamond or Starwood Platinum status would be worth the time and effort once I slogged though the ordeal of earning top-tier status for the first time.
When I think about all the points and upgrades I have missed out on at hotels over the last few years, I am consoled only by the fact that the extra money I would have spent is sitting in the bank. But flying has been a profitable hobby for me and chasing hotel status might turn out to be another profitable venture if I hunker down and really learn the tricks of the trade.
As I do, I will share them here.