The 6 Best Credit Cards for World of Hyatt Loyalists [2021]

Thompson Washington D.C. Bedroom View

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Hyatt may not have the footprint to rival giants Marriott and Hilton, but it proves that bigger is not always better by offering a desirable collection of upwards of 900 properties and a popular rewards program that is nearly cult-like with Hyatt loyalists.

You can’t be a Hyatt fan without considering the benefits of one of the World of Hyatt-branded credit cards, however, as they are a major piece of a total Hyatt persona. The cards complete the triangle of the World of Hyatt-brand hotel experience and the supporting World of Hyatt loyalty program by adding in a long list of Hyatt benefits one receives by having one of the cards.

If you frequent Hyatt properties and you’re not yet a cardholder, you may not be able to hold out much longer.

Let’s talk about the benefits of having a World of Hyatt-branded card, how the cards stack up with similar hotel-branded card competitors, and alternative or additional cards that may add value for the Hyatt loyalist or serve to complement their World of Hyatt-branded card.

The Best World of Hyatt-Branded Credit Cards

Selecting a World of Hyatt-branded card is a simple task as you’ll have either a Chase-issued personal or business card from which to choose. Let’s look at each card option and the associated benefits each card provides for those who frequent Hyatt properties.

The World of Hyatt Credit Card

Let’s take a look at why Hyatt fans might consider adding this card to their wallet.

Why We Like This Card for Hyatt Loyalists

  • Up to 9 points total for Hyatt stays4 Bonus Points per $1 spent at Hyatt hotels plus 5 Base Points per $1 from Hyatt as a World of Hyatt member
  • 2x points at restaurants, flights purchased directly from the airlines, fitness and gym memberships, and for local transit including rideshare, taxi, mass transit, and tolls
  • Complimentary entry-level World of Hyatt Discoverist elite status and earn 2 elite qualifying nights toward higher elite status for every $5,000 spent on the card
  • Complimentary hotel night certificate each calendar year after card anniversary
  • Additional complimentary hotel night certificate after spending $15,000 in a calendar year on the card
  • 5 elite tier night credits each calendar year for having the card

Hot Tip: To learn more about how to earn lots of World of Hyatt points, we’ve got a lot of ideas to share with you. If you want some recommendations on how to get the best value from your points, check out this article offering the best value World of Hyatt point redemptions.

World of Hyatt Business Credit Card

Business owners who frequent Hyatt as their brand of choice will enjoy the perks that come with a World of Hyatt-branded business card.

Why We Like This Card for Hyatt Loyalists

  • $100 Hyatt credit — $50 credit when spending $50+, twice per year
  • Up to 9 points total for Hyatt stays — 4 Bonus Points per $1 spent at Hyatt hotels plus 5 Base Points per $1 from Hyatt as a World of Hyatt member
  • 2x points earning for gym and fitness membership purchases
  • 2x points on 3 of 8 select bonus categories that include dining, airline tickets directly through the airline, local transit and computing, car rental agencies, gas stations, internet/cable/phone services, social media/search engine advertising, and shipping (through December 2021, then 2 of 8 bonus categories)
  • Complimentary entry-level World of Hyatt Discoverist elite status and earn 5 elite qualifying nights toward higher elite status for every $10,000 spent on the card
  • After spending $50,000 on the card, you will receive 10% of points used for redemption in the form of a rebate (maximum 20,000 points)
  • Ability to gift Discoverist status to up to 5 employees
  • 5 elite tier night credits for each $10,000 spent on the card in a calendar year
  • No-fee employee cards

Travel and Shopping Benefits and Protections

World of Hyatt-branded cards also come with several travel and shopping benefits and protections, including the following:

  • Trip Cancellation/Interruption — If your trip is canceled or interrupted due to a covered situation, you could be reimbursed up to $5,000 for prepaid and otherwise non-refundable travel expenses.
  • Trip Delay — If your common carrier trip is delayed more than 12 hours (or overnight), you could receive up to $500 per ticket for incidentals reimbursement.
  • Secondary Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver — Coverage is provided for damage and theft to your rental car secondary to other auto insurance when the entire rental is paid for using your card and you have declined the rental agency’s CDW/LDW coverage.
  • Baggage Delay Insurance — If your baggage is delayed 6 hours or more, you could receive up to $100 per day for up to 5 days.
  • Lost Luggage Reimbursement — Receive up to $3,000 in coverage for checked or carry-on luggage if it is lost, damaged, or stolen.
  • Purchase Protection — If a qualifying item you purchased with your card is damaged or stolen within 120 days from the purchase date, you could receive a benefit of up to $500 per claim (maximum of $50,000 per account).
  • Extended Warranty Protection — The manufacturer’s warranty of 3 years or less that comes with a qualifying item will be extended for 1 year when purchased with your card.
  • Travel Accident Insurance — Receive up to $500,000 for a covered serious injury or death while traveling on a common carrier.

Bottom Line: The Hyatt loyalist will find their Hyatt experience enhanced greatly with a World of Hyatt-branded credit card. The cards come with complimentary elite status and a faster path to higher elite status for those who spend heavily on the cards. The cards also come with several travel and shopping benefits and protections. 

World of Hyatt Elite Status

World of Hyatt-branded cards come with complimentary Discoverist status that normally requires staying 10 nights each year, earning 25,000 qualifying base points, or hosting 3 meetings/events.

Discoverist status is the lowest level of elite status in the World of Hyatt loyalty program but still grants several benefits.

Let’s glance at an overview of what it takes to qualify for World of Hyatt Elite status and what benefits look like at each level. The elite requirements for 2021 have been reduced by 50% due to COVID-19:

BenefitDiscoverist — 5 Nights/12,500 Base Points, or 3 Hosted EventsExplorist — 15 Nights/25,000 Base Points, or 10 Hosted EventsGlobalist — 30 Nights, 50,000 Base Points, or 20 Hosted Events
Bonus Points Earning10%20%30%
Late Checkout2 p.m.4 p.m.4 p.m.
Room UpgradesPreferred RoomUpgraded RoomIncludes Standard Suites
M life Rewards Status Tier MatchPearlGoldGold
Guaranteed Room Availability72 hours48 hours
Resort Fees Waived on Eligible RatesX
Club Access or BreakfastX
Free Parking on Free NightsX
Guest of Honor Benefit SharingX

All World of Hyatt elite members receive 5 base points for each $1 spent at Hyatt properties, special member rates, waived resort fees on award stays, premium internet, and bottled water.

In addition, elite members receive priority check-in and American AAdvantage Miles Bonuses.

Elite members also have the ability to earn Milestone Awards based on the number of nights stayed each year. Milestone Awards include benefits such as lounge access, bonus points, Hyatt gift cards, suite upgrades, and more.

Hot Tip: Joining the World of Hyatt loyalty program is free and members receive special member-only room rates, earn rewards points, and have resort fees waived on award nights. Learn more about the World of Hyatt loyalty program by reading our in-depth guide to Hyatt elite status which contains information on achieving status, reciprocal benefits with hotel/airline partners, and more.

Hotel-Branded Personal Credit Card Comparison

Hyatt Place Washington DC White House Rooftop
While Hyatt’s footprint is smaller than other major brands, you’ll have a variety of hotel choices from affordable good- value properties to high-end luxury. Hyatt Place Washington, D.C. National Mall. Image Credit: Hyatt

The World of Hyatt card holds its own among similar-level personal hotel-branded credit cards.

Let’s take a look at how the card stacks up against competitor cards.

Card Annual FeeEarningsHotel Related Benefits
World of Hyatt card$95
  • 4x points at Hyatt
  • 2x points at restaurants, on flights purchased directly from the airlines, fitness and gym memberships, and for local transit including rideshare, taxi, mass transit, and tolls
  • 1x points on all other purchases
  • Complimentary World of Hyatt Discoverist status
  • Free hotel night certificate each calendar year after card anniversary, good for Category 1-4 properties
  • Additional free hotel night after spending $15,000 in a calendar year
  • 5 elite-tier qualifying nights each calendar year
  • 2 additional elite-tier qualifying nights for each $5,000 spent on the card each calendar year
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card$95
  • 6x points at Marriott
  • 2x points on all other purchases
Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card$95
  • 12x points at Hilton
  • 6x points at U.S. restaurants, U.S. gas stations, and U.S. supermarkets
  • 3x points on all other purchases
IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card$89
  • 10x points at IHG properties
  • 2x points at gas stations, restaurants, and grocery stores
  • 1x earnings on all other purchases

All of these cards come with a generous welcome bonus that is earned after meeting minimum spending requirements within the first 3 months after card approval.

Additionally, note that the number of points earned by spending on the associated hotel-branded credit card will be elevated with the bonus points for having the loyalty program elite status that comes complimentary with each hotel-branded card.

Here’s how the earnings break down by loyalty program:

  • Hilton Honors — a total of 30 points per dollar spent at Hilton properties: 12x points for paying with the card + 18x points for having Gold status
  • IHG Rewards — a total of 25 points per dollar at IHG properties: 10x points for paying with the card + 10x points for being an IHG Rewards member + 5x points for having Platinum Elite status
  • Marriott Bonvoy — a total of 17 points per dollar spent at Marriott: 6x points for paying with the card + 10x points for being a Marriott Bonvoy member +10% bonus for Silver Elite status
  • World of Hyatt — a total of 9 points per dollar spent at Hyatt: 4x points for paying with the card + 5x points for being a World of Hyatt elite member

Note that there may be some exceptions to these earning levels as certain hotel brands earn fewer points per dollar for stays. For example, the Tru by Hilton brand earns 5 base points per dollar per stay versus 10. Always check the associated loyalty program for exceptions.

Also, note that the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program offers all members their fifth award night complimentary as does Hilton Honors for its elite members. IHG offers the fourth-night complimentary benefit via its co-branded cards. Hyatt does not offer a free night with award stays via its loyalty program or the World of Hyatt card.

Bottom Line: While the World of Hyatt card may not earn as many points per dollar at the associated hotel brand as its competitors’ cards, Hyatt points can be worth significantly more. To learn more about how much points and miles can be worth, check out our article where we break down the value of the various rewards currencies. 

Alternative or Additional Cards for Hyatt Loyalists To Consider

Hyatt Regency Houston Intercontinental Airport
Chase Ultimate Rewards points transfer directly to Hyatt and can then be used to book free hotel nights. Hyatt Regency Houston Intercontinental Airport. Image Credit: Hyatt

If you stay at Hyatt properties frequently, chances are you’re a frequent traveler. If so, a travel rewards card that earns flexible points on travel purchases, allows for good value travel redemptions, and offers travel benefits you can use might be a prime consideration.

Here are a few of our favorite travel rewards cards that have the potential for being your go-to travel card or could make an excellent companion for a World of Hyatt-branded card.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

One of our most recommended cards for getting to know the benefits of earning and redeeming Chase Ultimate Rewards points is the Chase Sapphire Preferred card. It’s a card that will get plenty of use on an everyday basis and it comes with an excellent package of travel and shopping benefits.

Why We Like This Card for Hyatt Loyalists

  • Generous welcome bonus worth hundreds of dollars in travel
  • Ultimate Rewards points earned on the card transfer to hotel and airline partners, including Hyatt
  • $50 annual hotel credit (when booked via Ultimate Rewards travel portal)
  • Earn 3x points per dollar spent at restaurants, select streaming services, and online groceries
  • Earn 2x points on travel and 5x points for booking via the Ultimate Rewards travel portal
  • 10% anniversary bonus points based on total credit card spending
  • Points can be redeemed for travel on the Chase travel portal at the rate of 1.25 cents each
  • Complimentary DoorDash DashPass subscription
  • $60 Peloton Digital and All Access Membership statement credit (through December 31, 2021)
  • Enroll in complimentary Spot Club Platinum status at The Parking Spot for 2 years and receive 20% off of your first reservation and points for 1 free day of parking (through October 26, 2023)
  • No foreign transaction fees

Chase Ultimate Rewards points can be transferred directly to Hyatt and do so nearly instantly. The transfer ratio of 1:1 can result in good value when redeeming for select Hyatt properties. Free nights start at just 5,000 points.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

If you’re looking for a premium travel rewards card, you might want to check out the Chase Sapphire Reserve card. Not only will you be earning big on travel, but you’ll also have several options for redeeming your points for travel.

Why We Like This Card for Hyatt Loyalists

  • Generous welcome bonus worth hundreds of dollars when redeemed for travel
  • Ultimate Rewards points can be transferred to hotel and airline partners, including Hyatt
  • Complimentary Priority Pass Select membership with access to over 1,300 airport lounge and lounge alternative properties worldwide
  • Earn 3 points per dollar spent on travel and at restaurants
  • Earn 5x points on flights via the Ultimate Rewards portal and 10x points for hotels and car rentals
  • Earn 10x points on Chase Dining
  • Points can be redeemed for 1.5 cents each towards travel via the Chase Travel portal
  • $300 statement credit for travel purchases each card anniversary (including gas and grocery purchases through December 31, 2021)
  • Complimentary DoorDash DashPass subscription and membership to Grubhub+/Seamless+ (via Lyft Pink perk), plus $60 in DoorDash statement credits through December 2021
  • $120 Peloton Digital and All Access Membership statement credit (through December 31, 2021)
  • Enroll in complimentary Spot Club Platinum status at The Parking Spot for 2 years and receive 20% off of your first reservation and points for 1 free day of parking (through October 26, 2023)
  • No foreign transaction fees

Hot Tip: Both of these featured Chase premium cards offer a Pay Yourself Back benefit for purchases made in the past 90 days in select categories. You can redeem Ultimate Rewards points for statement credits at the rate of 1.25 cents per point on the Chase Sapphire Preferred card and 1.5 cents per point with the Chase Sapphire Reserve card. Want to know more about these 2 travel rewards cards? Check out our side-by-side comparison of the Chase Sapphire Preferred card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

This no-annual-fee card is a great beginner card that pairs nicely with premium Ultimate Rewards earning cards.

Why We Like This Card for Hyatt Loyalists

  • Welcome bonus
  • Earns Ultimate Rewards points that can be transferred to Chase premium cards such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred card and Chase Sapphire Reserve card then transferred to hotel and airline partners, including Hyatt
  • Points transferred to premium Chase Ultimate Rewards-earning cards can be redeemed for as much 1.5 cents each for travel
  • Earns 5% back on travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% back on dining and drugstores, and 1.5% back on all other purchases (in the form of Ultimate Rewards) on every purchase
  • 5% cash-back on Lyft, special promotion through March 2022
  • Complimentary 3-month DoorDash DashPass membership and 50% discount for 9 months

The Freedom Unlimited card offers great bonus categories and ensures all of your purchases are receiving rewards with 1.5% earnings. And, with no annual fee, it’s a card you can keep in your wallet forever.

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

The smart business owner maximizes every opportunity to get ahead. Earning rewards on every purchase your business makes is one way to get ahead because it adds value to your bottom line.

The Ink Business Preferred card, a card we recommend often, serves that purpose well. You’ll earn Ultimate Rewards on every purchase and at redemption time those points can be redeemed for travel or transferred to travel partners for even greater potential value.

Credit CardKey Benefits & Info
Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
Learn More
(at Chase's secure site)
  • Earn 100,000 bonus points after you spend $15,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases on travel, shipping purchases, internet, cable and phone services, advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases—with no limit to the amount you can earn
  • 25% more value when redeeming points through Ultimate Rewards® travel
  • Good to Excellent Credit Recommended (670-850)
  • Annual Fee: $95

$2,000

Must Reads: For more info on the Ink Business Preferred, see our guides on its benefits, 7 things to do as a new cardholder, and our full review. This is our favorite Chase business credit card.

Why We Like This Card for Hyatt Loyalists

  • Generous welcome bonus
  • Earns Ultimate Rewards points that can be transferred to World of Hyatt (1:1 ratio) and other hotel/airline partners
  • Ultimate Rewards points can be redeemed for 25% more in value via the Chase travel portal
  • 3x points earned for travel purchases, internet/cable/phone, shipping, and advertising purchased through social media and search engines (maximum $150,000 in purchases per year)
  • 5x points on Lyft purchases
  • Primary car rental insurance
  • Trip cancellation/interruption/delay insurance
  • Cell phone protection

For additional Chase business credit card recommendations, you’ll find all the information you need to select the right card in our article on the best Chase business credit cards.

Hot Tip: You’ll notice that most of the cards we’ve featured in this article are issued by Chase. The card issuer, unfortunately, has an (unwritten) rule regarding the number of credit cards you have applied for in the last 24 months. The “rule” is referred to as the Chase 5/24 rule and can affect whether you’re approved for Chase credit cards.

Final Thoughts

If you frequent a particular hotel brand, having that hotel chain’s branded credit card can significantly increase your earnings and provide benefits that can make your stay more comfortable.

If you’re a Hyatt loyalist, having a World of Hyatt-branded credit card makes perfect sense. The complimentary night certificate offered each calendar year after the card anniversary on the personal card can be worth the annual fee as the certificate can be used at Category 1-4 properties. For example, you could redeem your certificate at the Grand Hyatt Melbourne, Australia, a Category 4 property, where rates can be as much as $350 per night at peak times.

World of Hyatt-branded cards, like other hotel credit cards associated with a preferred brand, present a value proposition for the Hyatt loyalist. Also, like other hotel-branded cards, these cards may pair well with a general travel rewards card to ensure that all of your expenses are earning the most rewards possible and that you’re receiving a full package of travel benefits and protections.


The information regarding the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card and Chase Freedom Unlimited® has been independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer. 


Frequently asked questions

Is a Hyatt credit card worth it?

If you stay at Hyatt properties, even occasionally, a World of Hyatt-branded card is worth it.

Additionally, if you value World of Hyatt elite status, World of Hyatt-branded cards offer a fast path to get there by granting complimentary entry-level elite status and facilitating a way to spend your way to higher elite status.

The cards also come with travel and shopping benefits that provide protection, potentially saving you money.

Can I have more than 1 Hyatt credit card?

Yes, you can have both a personal and business World of Hyatt-branded card.

How does the Hyatt free night certificate work?

The World of Hyatt card offers a free hotel night certificate good for 1 free night at a Category 1-4 Hyatt property each year at the card anniversary.

Once you have paid your renewal, you will receive your free night certificate within 10 weeks. The certificate is good for 12 months from the date it is issued.

You can earn an additional free hotel night certificate by spending $15,000 in a calendar year on your World of Hyatt card. The certificate will be issued within 2 to 3 weeks after you have completed the spending.

Free night certificates are issued to primary cardholders. Additional authorized users are not eligible for free night certificates.

How much does a free hotel room cost using Hyatt points?

Hyatt properties are divided into 8 categories. A Category 1 property can be purchased starting at just 5,000 World of Hyatt points.

Christine Krzyszton

About Christine Krzyszton

Christine, who lives in Northern Michigan, travels about 300,000 miles a year despite her remote location. Her expertise is traveling the world on a weekend with no pre-determined destination in mind, letting the cost of the airfare determine where she will go. She has over four million flown miles and elite status on all three major domestic carriers.

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