As someone obsessed with loyalty programs, I do everything I can to maximize the benefits associated with the status I earn. After all, earning status comes at a cost (both in terms of time and money), so not maximizing benefits is like throwing away money.
No matter how hard I try, I’ll never do a perfect job maximizing these programs, though I’m especially embarrassed by how many upgrades I’m having go to “waste” next week.
Most loyalty program status is earned on a calendar year basis, though typically there’s some grace period before the status expires. In the case of American AAdvantage and Hyatt Gold Passport, earned status for this past program year is valid through the end of February. The same is true of the upgrade instruments earned with those programs.
In the 2016 program year, I earned eight systemwide upgrades for being an Executive Platinum member (unfortunately that has been slashed in half as of this year). Last year you even got an additional two systemwide upgrades for each 25,000 elite qualifying points you earned beyond 100,000, so I earned a total of 16 systemwide upgrades based on my 200,000+ elite qualifying points.
Meanwhile with Hyatt Gold Passport I earned four confirmed Diamond Suite Upgrade Awards, each of which can be used to confirm a suite upgrade at the time of booking for a stay of up to a week.
Well, these upgrade instruments are expiring next week, and somehow I haven’t used them all. I still have four American systemwide upgrades…
…and two Hyatt suite upgrades.
That’s pretty unfortunate, given that:
- I had American flights I took in economy where I didn’t apply a systemwide upgrade
- I had plenty of stays at Hyatts where I wasn’t in a suite
But somehow I chose not to redeem my confirmable upgrades. Perhaps part of my problem is that I’m always seeking the “perfect” redemption, to the point that I end up just letting some things expire altogether. Rather than redeeming a systemwide upgrade for a transcon flight where I knew my upgrade wouldn’t clear, or redeeming a suite upgrade for a short stay, I just saved them to the point that they went to waste.
Hopefully I can at least gift the systemwide upgrades to friends traveling over the next week, though unfortunately the Hyatt upgrades aren’t transferable.
Anyone else in a similar boat and finding themselves with upgrades expiring next week?