For years Hyatt Gold Passport was hands down the most generous hotel loyalty program. That was probably a function of the state the economy was in at the time, combined with Hyatt’s smaller global footprint. It takes effort to be loyal to Hyatt since they don’t have hotels everywhere, while being loyal to Hilton, IHG, or Marriott doesn’t take much effort, by comparison.
However, the hotel industry has recovered very nicely post-recession, so hotels don’t need to offer as many promotions in order to get heads into beds. While we continue to see hotel loyalty programs offer promotions, my general question is why they even bother, since the promotions don’t seem compelling enough to actually get people to change their stay behavior.
For years Hyatt had a very cool “surprise and delight” campaign, where they celebrated the milestones of members. For example, in 2013 I posted about how I got an email from Hyatt congratulating me for having stayed at 50 unique Hyatt properties, and offering me one free night at any Hyatt hotel in the world.
Then a bit over a year ago I surpassed 75 unique Hyatt properties, and they emailed me again to offer me another free night at any Hyatt hotel in the world — awesome!
It was so nice to get such a surprise, but then again, I guess the challenge is that in the age of the internet, it’s much more difficult to truly “surprise and delight” customers, since people talk about this stuff online. So the program started to become more of an expectation than a true surprise.
Hyatt offered these kinds of milestone rewards for several years, though it seems like Hyatt has discontinued this program @CosmicLLC Tweeted me about this today, and now that I’ve done some research, it does indeed seem like the program has been discontinued, or as they’re calling it, “temporarily suspended.”
This was a fantastic recognition of loyalty while the program existed, though I guess I’m not too surprised to see they pulled it. I’m guessing they had a hard time quantifying their return on investment with this promotion, and with hotels having increasingly high occupancy rates, the cost to Hyatt of fulfilling this promotion was on the rise.
Did you ever receive a Hyatt milestone email?