Programs: Hyatt Platinum, IHG Platinum, HHonors gold, Kimpton inner circle
Very Disappointed in Hyatt Diamond status so far
I am a longtime Hilton Honors Gold (and sometimes Diamond) member. I heard positive things about the Hyatt Gold Passport program and decided to go for a Diamond trial, since I have a conference coming up at a Hyatt. Hyatt granted me the opportunity to participate in the Diamond trial. Unfortunately, it has been downhill from there:
1. Bonus points have not always posted.
2. I tried to use one of my confirmed suite upgrades and was told that I could not do so. As a Hilton Diamond, I found that the Diamond desk was able to intercede and get me a confirmed club room on an award stay even when a hotel in a popular location (Barbados) was hosting a conference. With Hyatt, I am being told that I can't use a confirmed suite upgrade for a paid stay when I called to ask if I can use one of my 4 suite upgrades that are showing up in my account.
3. I got the Hyatt credit card as a Diamond and have 2 free nights in a suite available as a result of getting that card. These are already showing up in my account. I tried to book the Grand Hyatt Kauai to use the 2 free suite nights and was told that there are no suite award nights available even though the Hyatt website clearly shows suite availability for my travel dates. The Hyatt reps keep trying to tell me that a "Club room" is the same as a suite, and have booked me in that type of room, even though I suspect that this is not the case. A rep told me that the hotel is not busy and has "plenty of available rooms" during my stay.
I have not received a new Hyatt card showing Diamond status as of yet, so I don't have access to a Diamond phone number (if there is one). I have found the regular phone reps to be polite and friendly, but not well versed in the Diamond benefits. I would like to try to get the 25 nights in to re-qualify, but if I can't use the advertised benefits, I am wondering if I should try. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how I might addess this with Hyatt?
#1: Yup, that happens, it's happened fairly often to me too. It's a weakness in the system, unfortunately.
#2: I'm not a program expert (imagine admitting that on FT!) but I do know that not all Hyatts participate in the suite upgrade program, or there are sometimes minimum stay or minimum room rate requirements. It would help us resolve that one if you were more specific about the hotel and dates you were trying to upgrade.
#3: We have a resident expert here on the GH Kaua'i, but even though I've been there only once, I can state with 100% confidence that a club room is NOT the equivalent of a suite at that hotel. Whoever told you that is just flat out wrong. Call the hotel directly, they are typically very accommodating unless you are there during an absolute peak period.
Programs: QF WP (OWE), VA PLAT, EY GLD, SPG PLAT, Hyatt DIA, Hilton DIA, Hertz PC
1) Bonus points often take rectifying.
2) Did they tell you why you can't use your Diamond e-cert? The only reason you would not be able to is if the property is sold out of the room type that the e-cert books into. If this is the case, you can't fault the property or Hyatt.
3) Hyatt properties in Hawaii are a nightmare to use e-certs for. I was able to do so in Waikiki and Maui, but applied the e-certs very early in the year for a stay in August.
Programs: WN CP, DL PLT, Hyatt DD, PC PLT, GC PLT, Hertz PC
1) point posting - Hyatt's IT people are probably high school dropouts. I have been a Diamond for 6+ years and they have NEVER fixed that issue. I mean, how hard can it be?!@!!@?! I have GP customer service on speed dial, to correct the point posting issue. I am tired of hearing excuses that too many computer systems and too many hotels, blah blah blah, 6 years is a LONG time to fix a rather simple issue.
2) Good luck! the suite upgrade is another hit and miss thing. I don't even count that as a benefit because it never works when you wanted it.
Surprisingly, i did the opposite of you, I joined Hilton and I can tell you that Hilton benefits are much better and useful. I think you made a mistake...
Programs: Hyatt Diamond, Fairmont Lifetime Plat, UA Silver, dirt elsewhere
With the advent of the credit card and all the free suites being handed out, popular properties like Kauai have tightened up on their availability of free suite nights. There must be garden suites available in order to be able to use a free suite night now - if you see an ocean suite or better online, they won't confirm it for you.
A club room is NOT just like a suite. All the regular rooms on the property are essentially identical, except for view. A Club room is just one of those regular rooms, perhaps with a full ocean view, with access to the club.
Life is too short to spend it being angry
I understand your disappointment, but think you are focusing your entire perception of the program on (basically) one benefit - suite upgrades. And suite upgrades at some of the most popular properties in the chain!
1) others are correct, points posting can be an issue. But it is an issue I have at Marriott and Hilton - so IMO that is just a basic hotel/program flaw in all chains. I am surprised you have never had an issue with Hilton...but great for you!
2) if you are asking for a suite upgrade during a conference, chances are the suites have been booked by paying customers. there is nothing to intercede on there - sold out is sold out.
3) all suites are not created equal. Suite Upgrades never qualify for Presidential Suites, etc..... so although there may be many rooms (even suites) available, if it is of a type that does not qualify, again - nothing Diamond desk (or anyone else) can do.
As you admit, you "decided to go for a Diamond trial, since I have a conference coming up at a Hyatt." Sometimes it can be disappointing when one joins a program for a specific reason, rather than the program (and properties!) as a whole.
I would suggest you give Hyatt service, stellar properties, club visits, etc a little more time. Then you can make a decision based on multiple aspects of being a Diamond, rather than just suite availability.
We're also here to assist. You can PM your reservation details and we can double check availability and postings to your GP account to ensure that everything has been posted. If you're a Diamond member, we can set you up with a Private Line representative that you can speak with directly about your hotel reservations, point postings etc.. Please let us know if we can further assist you!
For numbers 2 and 3, suite upgrades and free suite nights are in most cases confirmable only for entry-level suites. (At the GHK, this is a "Garden View Suite.") If entry-level suites are sold out for your dates, you cannot use the suite upgrades or the free suite nights, even if higher-level suites are available.
Of course, you might get upgraded to a higher-level suite at check-in -- in fact, quite often, you will -- but you cannot confirm into such a suite in advance. I never had a problem using my upgrades or free suite nights, but I was usually able to plan in advance.
I would have to agree that I have been somewhat disappointed with the Hyatt Program after SO much rave reviews among fellow travelers. My husband and I previously mostly stayed with Marriott or boutique hotels but this last year did a status match for Hyatt Diamond. We are trying to decide on whether or not it is worth keeping.
-I do enjoy having the suite upgrades and often times I get a suite for a great discounted price. It is nice to have the extra space especially with children.
- The Diamond breakfast amenity is fantastic and certainly saves us money when traveling as a family.
- There aren't that many Hyatt (domestic) hotels and while the top end hotels/resorts are nice most of the properties I have stayed at are not that impressive. I personally am not as big of a fan of the Hyatt Places as some...the dark colors of the hotel to me make it look older and less clean. While they do provide breakfast (unlike some of the lower end hotels of the other major chains), there breakfast really isn't that tasty. The Hyatt Regencys in my opinion are just alright. Many of the them are kind of dated and quite honestly don't have that nice of suites. Sometimes I would almost go so far as to say the suites are more dated and "less nice" than the standard rooms.
- I have not exactly found the Diamond recognition to be amazing either (yes, I know this varies by property), but as a whole I haven't found it amazing. Other than getting the 1000 points and breakfast the room upgrades have been mediocre at most properties. Even when the properties are very empty and several rooms and suites are showing up online I have not had properties upgrade me to a suite (yes, I know they don't have to, but it seems like it would be a nice gesture if there is availability).
- Overall, I would have to say that Marriott has a better domestic product. There are more hotels/locations to choose from. And typically when I have stayed at a Marriott they are very clean, and honestly seem much more refreshed and up to date as far as furniture/linens/bathrooms, etc. My experience with Marriott upgrading me to a suite (despite it not being in the terms and even excluding it) has been better than Hyatt so far. I know these could all be isolated property instances, but I am having a hard time being convinced so far that I should go for Hyatt Diamond again instead of working on Marriott status.
Hi caan12 and welcome to FT! I don't think you've got it wrong. Hyatt is possibly the smallest major chain, they don't have nearly as many properties as Hilton, SPG, or Marriott. The purchase of what became Hyatt Place -- which I won't stay in -- was done to increase numbers and make the chain large enough to go public, a critical part of settling the Pritzker (descendents of the chain's founder) lawsuit.
That being said, at the better properties, Hyatt really has their act together better than most. Marriott's handling of the Ritz-Carlton properties has been, in my limited experience, not nearly as good.
With relatively few exceptions, the real stars of the Hyatt chain are outside the US. But even within the US, I have had excellent experiences at the Park Hyatts in Washington DC and Chicago. I can't compare Hyatt diamond status to Marriott in general however, as I am nothing to Marriott and they treat me accordingly.
As a Lifetime Marriott Plat, I can (somewhat accurately ) compare the programs and properties..
Marriott is consistent. Overall you get good service, and as a Plat problems are handled quickly and well. There are definitely more of them, and they are often priced better than Hyatt. Overall, I agree you cannot go wrong there...I certainly have the years and nights to prove it!
I find Hyatt Diamond worth it
....Because Marriott no longer offers weekend breakfast at FS properties, and has never offered it at resorts. That perk alone makes it worth it when I am traveling with my family. (actually, the breakfast in Key West alone would insure I keep Diamond status!)
....Because I like Hyatt Resorts better than Marriott Resorts, and find my treatment at those properties generally better.
....Because I truly could care the least about suite upgrades on a regular basis, especially when I am traveling alone. When they ARE important, I have my upgrades. In fact, a Park Hyatt is allowing me to use TWO at once, so I can treat some friends, too. I love that!
BUT - like you, I do not like Hyatt Place - think they are gloomy and agree with your comments about the dark colors.
Marriott has some detriments that affect the bennies I care about. The BOGO program is gone, and was handled poorly. The mega bonus offers are not that "mega" - especially when you have to use a Marriott card and cannot do so. I do not like the 1/2 points received at Res Inn or TPS - Hilton Homewood trumps those, and Hilton Garden Inn definitely trumps CY...while FI is better than HInn IMO. BUT - Hilton point redemption is insane, a detriment to their entire program.
Only you can decide which bennies mean the most to you and your family.
Programs: Hyatt Diamond, Marriott Gold, Starwood and Hilton Peasant, AA and United It All Depends
If having to audit your stay credits and bonus points is a major frustration to you; then you really want to call it off with Hyatt right now. Some things just are. Posting issues at Hyatt are one of them. (On the other hand all it takes to fix is e-mail in a image of the folio. In my experience much easier to fix than any competitor I have a frequent guest account with).
If you will read the Kauai thread you will find the board reports they are generous to Diamonds with club and view room upgrades. (This has been my experience). Short of say a mammoth convention sucking up the view rooms, even as a newly minted Diamond it will probably happen for you. However, suite upgrades have never been easy to get. (I'm 1 for 5). People will pay for them, and (to channel my friend the manager at another property, availability for sale does not mean she is willing or required to give away her last few as upgrades).
Congratulations if you pull it off, but expecting to get a suite there with a certificate in high season and a short Diamond history may not be realistic. Like the rest of the Hawaii properties, Kauai has their super-regulars that go to the front of the comp line. (Even within Diamond there is a numerical score based on recent stays). If a successful vacation depends on a suite you might want to book it to assure it.
Oh, and HP's are a relative thing. (Meaning a few places I have relatives the HP is arguably the best place in town).