World of Hyatt’s Off-Peak and Peak pricing went live back on October 26 and we’ve finally had a chance to check them out here at Rewards Canada. Recall that these new options are being introduced for award nights starting on
March 1, 2022. This means all free night awards are at the standard
rates until February 28, 2022.
Here is a reminder of how World of Hyatt’ Peak and Off-Peak free night pricing works:
Fewer points will be required during Off-peak times, starting at 3,500
points per night (the best value when hotels are less busy)
- Standard: Points
required during standard redemption periods will follow today’s point
requirements, starting at 5,000 points per night (the most common rate)
- Peak: More
points will be required for a free night during Peak times, starting at
6,500 points per night and will be no more than 5,000 points above the
Standard point requirement (when hotels are the busiest)
And here are the new free night award charts detailing the Off-Peak, Standard and Peak rates:
Off-Peak and Peak pricing also apply to Points+Cash bookings, All Inclusive Resort bookings (Hyatt Ziva & Zilara) and to Miraval Resorts bookings. To keep this post at a reasonable length we have chosen not to post those additional points charts here, you can see them however on World of Hyatt’s Free Nights page.
Part of what Hyatt told use previously was that redemption rates for free nights will be announced as soon as nights are
available for reservations (usually 13 months in advance). This means the majority of Off-Peak, Standard and Peak nights are set at that time and only in certain situations would Hyatt adjust the pricing after setting the calendar in place. Which leads us to their new online
points calendar where you can see a hotel’s Off Peak, Standard and Peak nights on a monthly basis. Simply search for the hotel you are interested in on Hyatt’s website and input any dates for a stay and the next screen will present you an option to see the points calendar:
Click on the “Points Calendar” and the calendar will pop up. You can also access the calendar from Hyatt’s destination map search:
Once you click that you will be presented with the calendar option and you can scroll through month by month. You can also select the award type (Standard, Premium Suite, Regency/Grand Club etc.) from a drop down menu.
Here’s the Hyatt Regency Calgary for Standard room in April 2022:
And for a Regency/Grand Club room in July 2022:
How about the recently reopened Park Hyatt Toronto in the ‘Peak’ of summer (sorry just had to do that)
With the Park Hyatt Toronto you can see mostly peak nights here with no off peak nights at all and only a few standard nights.
There is one issue with Hyatt’s calendar however – it doesn’t show actual availability. It strictly shows how many points are required on those nights. You have to click through to see if there are actually any rooms available at that points level. Other hotel programs show actual availability on their points calendars so hopefully this is something Hyatt fixes in the near future.
So what about actual value in these Off-Peak and Peak night awards?
I’m just providing a couple of snapshots here – there can be and will be redemption options that won’t provide as much value as I found in these but on the other hand there may be some that provide even better value.
I started my search with Category 1 hotel – the Hyatt Place
Calgary Airport which had quite a few Off-Peak nights in March 2022 and
it presents a really good value:
The cash price is $127.74 ($114 + taxes/fees) or the Off-Peak Cat 1 free night pricing of only 3,500 points. The puts this redemption at an amazing 3.65 cents per point in
value! We typically value World of Hyatt points at 2 cents a piece (C$)
so to get 3.65 is awesome.
Now let’s go back to the iconic Park Hyatt Toronto, what about those Peak nights at 29,000 points? Here’s a one night stay on July 15, 2022
Here you have a room that cost $646.42 all in and you have to redeem 29,000 points for it. Value: 2.2 cents. That’s still not bad but look at the night before this – July 14, 2022:
Here you have a standard redemption of 25,000 points for a room that is $802.72! That gives you a redemption value of 3.2 cents per point. So what gives here? Simple, since July 15 is a Friday the points price is boosted to Peak because it’s a weekend in the summer. Not because it’s more expensive, look at the night before, it’s more expensive cash wise and requires 4,000 less points. No one ever said Off-Peak Peak pricing makes sense 100% of the time and this is one example of that. This is also a good example of the differences between the hotel programs that run an Off-Peak/Peak system versus a dynamic system that follows the cash price. Off-Peak/Standard/Peak still provides the ability to find outsized value from your hotel points whereas dynamic pricing is less likely to do so. You guessed it, I’m alluding to Marriott Bonvoy here who are moving away from the model Hyatt just went introduced and going dynamic in 2022.
Wrapping it up
While this is considered a devaluation to the World of Hyatt program because there will be many occasions where you’ll be spending more points for free nights, I don’t think it is one that will make the record books. There is still really good value in the Hyatt program – I mean even the Peak night award the Park Hyatt Toronto was coming in at 2.2 cents per point. And then you have the Off-Peak award nights, maybe I was lucky in finding that Calgary example at 3.6 cents per point but it’s there and it’s available.
The other factor I think that keeps this change out of the devaluation record books is that Hyatt kept the increases to Peak rates reasonable. Only 1,500 to 5,000 more points for a standard free night award, that isn’t a lot in the grand scheme of things except in some ways it is (so I am going to contradict myself here a little). When you look at the numbers of 1,500 to 5,000 more points they don’t seem that big but for us Canadians and pretty much all World of Hyatt members that aren’t from the U.S., these points are hard to come by. We don’t have a co-brand credit card like the U.S. does to supplement earning points at hotels. We literally have Hyatt stays, which if you are travelling in Canada your options are severely limited, and buying Hyatt points – that’s it. Oh sorry, Avis car rentals work too and if you are World of Hyatt Elite you can earn points for flying on American Airlines.