I spent the last two days of the year at the Hyatt Regency in Mainz, checking out on January 1st. In the World of Hyatt program, that’s called a head start on the new year!
You might think that the stays would count toward 2018. After all, both nights technically took place in 2018. But that’s not the way the World of Hyatt program works. Hyatt awards stay credit based upon checkout date, not the actual stay date. Thus, since I checked out on 01/01/2019, my two nights count toward 2019.
Think about those implications for just a moment. If I had spent a month in the hotel and checked out on 01/01 or anytime after 01/01, all the nights in the previous year count toward the new year.
That’s great for people like me who already had more than enough stays for 2018. But three years ago it came as a very rude awakening.
This was back in the old Gold Passport program era, where top-tier status could be earned with 50 nights or 25 stays. As the end of the year approached, I was stuck on 22 stays. I booked a “mattress” runs at the two Hyatt properties in Long Beach and reached 12/31 with 24 stays. We had already booked our New Year’s Eve at the Park Hyatt Aviara in Carlsbad and headed down there. I checked out on 01/01, thinking I had met the re-qualifications for top-tier status. But then the stay credit posted for the new year, not the old one. It sent me into a panic…
Hyatt was unwilling to budge at all. I escalated my issue up several tiers and was met with a resounding “too bad, so sad!” Thankfully, upon auditing my account I found one stay in Germany that had not posted and I was able to keep my then Diamond status. But I had learned an important lesson.
I write this post because it is not exactly intuitive that nights in 2018 would count toward 2019, but that’s the way Hyatt does it. Keep this in mind, to your benefit and detriment, as you plan out hotel stays for the year ahead.
image: Park Hyatt Tokyo / Hyatt