My wife and I took little Augustine to Disneyland last week. His first ride, appropriately I think, was It’s A Small World.
The ride, a Disneyland staple since 1966, takes you on a journey around the world with the following tune playing throughout:
It’s a world of laughter, a world of tears
It’s a world of hope and a world of fears
There’s so much that we share, that it’s time we’re aware
It’s a small world after all
It’s a small world after all, it’s a small world after all
It’s a small world after all, it’s a small, small, small, small world
Here’s a video of the entire ride. I caution you — that song will be stuck in your head if you play it!
I Am Now A Hyatt Globalist
Hyatt Gold Passport is dead. Long live World of Hyatt.
I’ve written about the new World of Hyatt program, that takes effect today, and I cannot help but to offer some thoughts on why I became loyal to Hyatt and reman loyal.
As a child, my family loved going to the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego (even when it was still just a Hyatt Regency with a single tower). We had no elite status then and would even walk over the next door Marriott because that hotel had a better breakfast buffet. But I loved returning to that Hyatt each year for our family vacation.
Yet I always viewed hotel loyalty with skepticism. Back in the day, I was a Priceline Name-Your-Own-Price expert and my family routinely stayed at four star hotels for incredibly cheap prices. But that meant one trip we were at Hilton, the next at Marriott, the next at Omni, and the next at Starwood.
Faster Free Nights changed all calculations. It was 2010 and my brother and I were planning a trip to Asia. Under Hyatt’s Faster Free Night promotion, we found that we could stay for a couple nights in a cheap Hyatt hotel in the U.S. and earn a free night at the Park Hyatt hotels in Beijing, Shanghai, and Saigon. And that’s exactly what we did. I’m sure my parents were not pleased when I made them “mattress run” between the three Hyatts in DC and again between the two Hyatts in Philadelphia when they visited me…
But a funny thing happened.
I found out that Hyatt hotels were not just a great deal, but I really enjoyed almost every Hyatt property I visited. Service was great and even the GMs always seemed to make an appearance and say hello (this was pre-blog).
Still, I was a student and could not afford the 25 stays per year necessary for Diamond status. But as the years flew by and my travels increased, I finally achieved Diamond status. And have never looked back…
Certainly, under the new World of Hyatt program I must again evaluate whether Globalist status makes sense. Last year I clocked in 40 paid nights. A 1/3 increase is quite a lot to stomach. But I appreciate the suite upgrades, free breakfast, late checkouts, and most importantly, the great service.
It’s A Small (World of Hyatt) After All
Hyatt’s global footprint is so much smaller than its competitors. Even as the chain has grown over the last five years, getting sixty nights will require very careful planning and basing vacations around where Hyatt hotels are.
But as Hyatt seeks to remind us that it’s a small world, I cannot help to think that chasing loyalty is worth the effort. I appreciate that Jeff Zidell, SVP for loyalty at Hyatt, has fostered a corporate culture that promotes from within. On several occasions I have been welcomed to a hotel by a GM who moved over from a Hyatt I previously stayed in. Companies who take care of their employees generally do a great job of taking care of their customers. Further, I appreciate that the program reminds us that this whole game is more than just collecting points, free breakfast, and suite upgrades.
> Read More: A Very Political Ad from Hyatt
Traveling the world has opened my eyes to great wonders and beauties but also great needs. With a portfolio of properties in 56 countries, Hyatt has helped me do that. Sure, any chain could do that, but Hyatt did it — Hyatt and United are essential chapters of my story.
So sure, Hyatt’s footprint remains small. Yet I’ll remain loyal to the hotel program that has remained loyal to me. It’s a small world after all.