As I mentioned in other posts, I am an avid collector of points - hotel points, credit card points, frequent flyer miles, etc. I know them all and use them extensively to travel.
I also obviously own a timeshare and use it in conjunction with my points. One way that I pick destinations is to look at the various hotel programs and look at the highest tier properties. By doing so, I can guarantee that these are luxurious accommodations and generally a fantastic use of my points.
As I start my planning for the next big trip, I wanted to see how I can maximize the value of my Hyatt points so I started the search seeing their top end properties which is a Category 7 under Hyatt's system. Hyatt is one of the best hotel loyalty programs as it only costs 30,000 points per night at highest tier Hyatt properties. This is much lower than many of the other major chains. Here is the list of all Category 7 hotels.
As you can see in the above chart, I was surprised to see that there are five Hyatt Residence Club properties that are categorized as a Category 7 hotel (there are 17 Hyatt Residence Club properties in total). Curiously, I wanted to see whether using my Hyatt timeshare points would be more valuable than using my World of Hyatt points to book a one week trip.
Hyatt points can be very valuable and there are some great ways to get a lot of Hyatt points.
In this analysis, I wanted to see the true cost of getting a one week vacation in one of these properties by using timeshare points versus using World of Hyatt points.
Since these are category 7 properties, it takes 30,000 World of Hyatt points per night for a studio unit. Therefore, it will cost 210,000 World of Hyatt points for a week stay in a studio unit. A one bedroom or two bedroom would cost more.
In an effort to compare apples to apples, we will assume that we can reserve a studio unit using both programs as availability using World of Hyatt points and Hyatt Residence Club points can be difficult.
OBTAINING WORLD OF HYATT POINTS:
There are many ways to get World of Hyatt points. You can stay in Hyatt hotels, use the Hyatt credit card or use various credit cards associated with Chase Ultimate Rewards.
One of the best ways that I have found to get Hyatt points is through the Chase Ultimate Rewards program and in particular, using their business card (Chase Ink Bold or Ink Plus) to get 5x points on various spending categories including office supplies, utilities and telecom charges.
If you exclusively purchase items in the 5x categories, you would need to spend approximately $42,000 on your credit card to generate 210,000 Chase Ultimate Reward Points which can be transferred to Hyatt on a 1:1 basis.
For the purpose of this post, lets assume that for a cost of $6.95, you can receive 1,034.75 points. This figure was chosen for a reason as this is generally the cost of Visa or Mastercard gift cards in $200 increments.
Based on the assumption of using $6.95 to "purchase" 1,034.74 Chase Ultimate Reward points, it would cost you $1,459.50 to obtain these points requiring a purchase of approximately 210 $200.00 increment gift cards.
The math is as follows:
210,000 divided by 5 = 42,000
42,000 divided by 200 = 210
210 times 6.95 = $1,459.50
Alternatively, if you could purchase higher denomination gift cards (i.e. $500) (not very available anymore), the math would be as follows:
210,000 divided by 5 = 42,000
42,000 divided by 500 = 84
84 times 6.95 = $583.80
Therefore, it will require you to spend $42,000 on a card that generates 5x points in order to earn enough points for a one week stay at these properties. The cost to spend $42,000 can vary but based on some typical methods, I would argue that it would cost somewhere between $583.80 to $1,459.50 plus a decent amount of time to make these purchases.
This "cost"will vary widely so don't hold me to this as a true cost. It is meant as a fairly realistic example in the points world but this figure will highly depend on your individual spending habits. Additionally, some lucrative sign-up offers can lower this cost significantly but even with a 100,000 sign up bonus, you still need an additional 110,000 points.
Alternatively, the same example can be used if you stay at Hyatt hotels. Hyatt gives you 5 world of hyatt points per dollar spent with Hyatt. You would need to spend approximately $42,000 in order to get the required 210,000 - a little less if you have any status with Hyatt since they give you an extra 10%, 20% or 30% based on your status.
HYATT RESIDENCE CLUB POINTS:
I am a Hyatt Residence Club owner and own a week at the Hyatt Beach Club in Key West. I have never been to this destination and likely will never attend. I purchased this week specifically for Hyatt Residence Club points.
For this analysis, I am completely ignoring the upfront purchase fee. I have argued in other posts why it is smart to do so but there are many ways to get a timeshare for little to no cost including Hyatt properties.
For my specific week, I pay an annual fee of $1,207.46 in exchange for 2,000 Hyatt Residence Club Points. My week was previous allocated 1,300 Hyatt Residence Club Points but the chart was recently readjusted that resulted in a tremendous increase in points for my week. This is a rare occurrence but worked out in my favor.
Since we are comparing Studio units to Studio units, here is the chart for the Hyatt Residence Club for exchanging into a studio.
As you can see there are seven seasons associated with the Hyatt Residence Club. For purposes of this example, let assume that I want a prime week such as Christmas week - something that I would do with my Hyatt World of Hyatt points.
As you can see, lesser demand seasons would require lower amounts of points. As a comparison, World of Hyatt points do not change per season - it always requires 30,000 per night for the five Hyatt Residence Club properties indicated above.
In order to get a prime week, this would require 750 Hyatt Residence Club points.
As indicated above, I pay $1,207.46 in annual maintenance fees in exchange for 2,000 points. Therefore, my cost per point is approximately $.0.60 cents per point.
Here is the math:
$1,207.46 divided by 2,000 = $0.60
For purposes of evaluation, lets assume that my week was still worth 1,300 Hyatt Residence Club Points. In this example, my cost per point is approximately $.93 cents per point.
Here is the math:
$1,207.46 divided by 1,300 = $0.93
In order to reserve one week in a studio unit at one of the 5 Hyatt Residence Club properties using Hyatt Residence Club Points would cost me $450 using $.60 per point or $697.50 using $0.93 per point.
Here is the math:
750 times $0.60 = $450
750 times $0.93 = $697.50.
For full disclosure, the Hyatt Residence Club charges a reservation fee of $41.00 per reservation so the total upfront fee is $491.00 or $738.50, depending on the specific value.
Depending on how you earn World of Hyatt Points, I would argue that it would cost somewhere between $583.80 to $1,459.50 to earn 210,000 World of Hyatt Points in order to stay one week in a Category 7 property if you assume that you could entire spend would be in a credit card category that earns 5x. If you earn less than 5x, the cost will be much higher.
As an aside, I am ignoring the resort fees for this analysis since Hyatt waives resort fees on award night stays. Hyatt does not charge resort fees on Hyatt Residence Club owners who book using Hyatt Residence Club points.
As a comparison, by owning a Hyatt timeshare, my total upfront fee is approximately $491.00 or $738.50. This figure will vary depending on the maintenance fees associated with the particular unit and the allocated amount of points.
Therefore, at the low end, using Hyatt Residence Club Points to reserve a week in a studio unit at a category 7 Hyatt Residence Club property has an approximate cost of $491.00 for the entire week.
At the low end, using World of Hyatt points to reserve a week in a studio unit at a category 7 Hyatt Residence Club property has an approximate cost of $583.80 for the entire week but this "cost" can vary depending on your spending habits. If you spend $42,000 for business or personal at a 5x category, this "cost" is probably zero but not many people generate that type of spend.
I am sure that there are many areas which readers can dissect in this post that can allow you to make arguments in either direction - for or against the various items in the analysis.
The point of this post is that I wanted to show readers that owning a Hyatt timeshare and reserving with Hyatt Residence Club points can get you into top tier properties and is not very expensive based on the monetary outlay.
I argue that it is not very expensive even when comparing it to using World of Hyatt points since there is likely some cost associated with generating the required amount of points.
Additionally, I receive my Hyatt timeshare points each and every year. There is no effort to generating credit card spent or obtaining additional points. I simple pay my annual maintenance fee and receive these points. This can be much easier than continually accumulating world of hyatt points through Hyatt stays, credit cards or other means.
I did not go through an analysis based on cash bookings but most of these properties would cost over $400 per night which is simply too expensive for me. That is why is love the points world!
What do you think of this analysis? Is this accurate? How would you do an analysis on the cost to acquire World of Hyatt points?
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