Edited by: Keri Stooksbury
& Stella Shon
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Our military members make occupational sacrifices while facing unique challenges in their personal lives. Trying to balance the challenges of duty, home life, and commitment can also be supplemented by the financial challenges of military service.
The financial challenges have not gone unnoticed as evidenced by the passing of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act of 2003 (SCRA) and the Military Lending Act (MLA). We’ll expand on how these acts apply to credit cards shortly, but for now, it’s important to understand that the laws were designed to relieve some of the financial burdens of managing credit granted to our service members.
Chase is a financial institution that ensures its credit card products not only follow the letter of these laws but go above and beyond the requirements. An example of a Chase credit card that provides good value for active-duty military members is The World of Hyatt Credit Card.
Today we’re going to illustrate how Chase makes the World of Hyatt card military-friendly by waiving associated fees, but we’ll also share how the card benefits can be valuable for active-duty military members and their families.
Passed in 2003, the SCRA applies to credit acquired by the service member before active duty. The MLA (2006) applies to credit acquired by service members during active duty and after September 20, 2017, when the law was updated.
While the laws apply to a multitude of financial transactions, here’s how the acts generally apply to credit cards:
Chase caps interest rates on credit acquired prior to active duty at 4% versus the 6% required by law. Chase also waives fees for personal consumer credit cards acquired during active duty (after September 20, 2017).
In addition to the savings realized by Chase waiving card fees, the World of Hyatt card offers a long list of benefits for cardholders who are active-duty military members.
If you frequent any major hotel chain, you may benefit greatly from having the associated hotel-branded credit card. You’ll earn rewards faster, enjoy perks that can make your stay more comfortable, and receive protections and benefits that give you peace of mind or save you money.
Active-duty military members whose brand of choice is Hyatt will find value in the World of Hyatt card, even with modest spending on the card.
Here’s a sampling of some key World of Hyatt card benefits and their potential value.
As an active-duty military member, the $95 annual fee will be waived.
The welcome offer for the World of Hyatt card presents an opportunity to earn hundreds of dollars worth of World of Hyatt points by opening the card and meeting the required spending threshold within a specified time period.
Welcome offers can vary, so you’ll want to check for the most recent offer before you apply.
Here is the current welcome bonus offer for the World of Hyatt card:
The World of Hyatt card offers a fast track to Hyatt elite status, an annual free night, and up to 9x points per $1 on Hyatt stays.
The World of Hyatt Credit Card makes your Hyatt stays more rewarding and helps you get coveted World of Hyatt elite status faster. This card is a must-have for any traveler who regularly stays at Hyatt hotels, or even for anyone who’s able to take advantage of the card’s annual free night certificate.
When you factor in all the benefits the World of Hyatt card offers, it’s easy to see why it is one of the best co-branded hotel credit cards on the market.
You can earn World of Hyatt points for referring family or friends when they are approved for the World of Hyatt card. You’ll normally receive 5,000 points for each qualified referral, up to a maximum of 25,000 points each year. We value World of Hyatt points at approximately 1.5 cents each. If you were to refer 2 people to the card you’d receive points worth ~$150.
Note that Chase refer-a-friend opportunities come and go and may not always be available for every card.
The World of Hyatt card earns at least 1 World of Hyatt point for every dollar spent on the card. Additional bonus-earning categories allow you to start racking up points even more quickly.
Here’s an example of how spending on the card can add up to hotel award nights:
Before you know it, you’ll have enough points for at least 2 annual free night certificates. We value World of Hyatt points at approximately 1.5 cents each, meaning 30,000 points are worth ~$450.
Don’t forget, you can combine points with cash to make your points go further and extend the length of your stay.
Even with modest spending, you can earn enough points for award hotel nights. Also, check out the latest welcome offer on the card for additional ways to earn even more points.
The best use for points you’ve earned on the World of Hyatt card will be to redeem for award nights. The number of points it takes for an award night ranges from 3,500 points at an off-peak Category 1 property to 45,000 points for a peak-rate night at a Category 8 hotel.
You can also use your points for room upgrades where rates range from 3,000 points for a Club room to 9,000 points for a premium suite.
Additional options that can offer less value for your points include car rentals, spa access/treatments, dining, Lindblad Expeditions, meeting credits, and experiences.
Finally, you can redeem World of Hyatt points by transferring them to airlines, generally at a ratio of 5 World of Hyatt points to 2 airline miles. While normally not a good value, here’s the process to transfer World of Hyatt points into airline miles.
Travel protections offer peace of mind since you’ll know that if something goes wrong during your trip, you could potentially recoup some of the loss or added expenses. Travel benefits can also provide perks and save you money.
Here are the key travel protections and benefits you’ll find on the World of Hyatt card and each perk’s estimated value.
If you reserve and pay for your car rental with your World of Hyatt card and decline the rental agency’s CDW/LDW coverage, you’ll receive coverage for damage, theft, reasonable loss-of-use, and towing charges. Coverage is secondary to any personal auto insurance that applies. If you do not have auto insurance or if you are traveling in a country other than your residence country, coverage is primary.
Daily coverage with the rental agency can cost $20 per day. If you were to rent for 10 days, you could save ~$200.
If your trip needs to be canceled or is interrupted for a covered reason, you could receive up to $5,000 per person, up to $10,000 per trip. If your trip is delayed more than 12 hours or overnight, you could receive up to $500 in reimbursements for eligible expenses.Hot Tip:
The Guide to Benefits for the World of Hyatt card lists “a change in military orders” for you or your spouse/domestic partner as a covered event for trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance coverage. This makes the protection a real plus for active-duty military members.
If your luggage is lost, you could receive up to $3,000. If the luggage is delayed more than 6 hours, you could receive up to $100 per day in reimbursements for eligible expenses, up to a maximum of 5 days.
Each card anniversary year, you’ll receive an annual free night certificate good for a Category 1 through 4 Hyatt hotel.
If you spend $15,000 on the card in a year, you’ll receive an additional free night certificate, also good for a Category 1 through 4 hotel night.
The World of Hyatt card includes complimentary World of Hyatt Discoverist elite status. While Discoverist is entry-level elite status, benefits include late checkout, preferred rooms, and 10% bonus points on paid stays. Status remains valid as long as your World of Hyatt card is active.
You’ll also receive a faster path to higher elite status with 5 automatic elite night credits each year, plus 2 additional elite night credits for every $5,000 spent on the card.
Foreign transaction fees are generally 3% of the entire transaction amount. The World of Hyatt card is a good international travel companion as it does not charge foreign transaction fees.
If you were to spend $1,000 abroad, you would save $30.
The World of Hyatt card offers valuable protection for eligible items and benefits that can save you money when you use the card to make qualifying purchases.
When you purchase eligible items with your World of Hyatt card, you can receive coverage for damage or theft for up to 120 days from the purchase date. The coverage limit is up to $500 per claim, up to $50,000 per account. If the eligible item has a manufacturer’s warranty of 3 years or less, the warranty will be extended for 1 additional year.
Log in to your Chase online card account and activate Chase Offers from select merchants and service providers. Use your card to make the associated purchase and earn statement credits for the purchase.
Enroll your card by December 31, 2024, and receive a 12-month complimentary DoorDash DashPass membership that offers waived delivery and reduced fees. This offer is only valid for those who have not had DashPass previously. DoorDash DashPass normally costs $9.99 per month.
As you can see, the World of Hyatt card offers valuable benefits for military members who frequent Hyatt properties.
Now let’s review who qualifies for Chase’s benefits, some tips on applying for the card, and how to request SCRA/MLA benefits.
You may qualify for benefits with Chase under the SCRA or MLA if you are one of the following:
Additionally, spouses, domestic partners, children, and qualifying dependents of active-duty service members may receive benefits.
In order to be approved for the World of Hyatt card, it’s recommended to have a good to excellent credit score of at least 700 or above. You may also need some credit history and sufficient income to make monthly payments (even if you plan to pay off the card each statement period).
Once you’ve determined your credit score, you’ll want to review Chase’s 5/24 rule as it can affect your chances of approval. In general, Chase considers new credit cards from all card issuers and will not approve you if you’ve opened more than 5 in the past 24 months.
Be sure to check the Department of Defense database via the MLA website to confirm your active duty status is showing appropriately in your record. And, if you are applying for benefits for a spouse/domestic partner, their status needs to be shown in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS) database. These databases are also used by financial institutions to validate eligibility.
Once you’ve applied for the World of Hyatt card and are approved, you can request SCRA/MLA benefits. It’s possible that Chase may automatically grant SCRA/MLA benefits after validating your eligibility. This can happen when you’ve noted in your application that your income source is “military.” If so, you’ll receive a letter confirming the benefits.
If not, you can easily request benefits by doing the following:
You can also call 877-469-0110 (8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays) or if out of the country, call collect at 318-340-3348. This is a dedicated line for SCRA/MLA questions.
Finally, you have the option of sending the request via mail, with supporting documentation, to Chase at the following address:
Attention SCRA Request
P.O. Box 183240
Columbus, Ohio, 43218-3240
The waiving of credit card fees is a huge benefit for active-duty military as cards with high annual fees also come with a long list of valuable perks that offset this cost.
Here are 2 additional Chase credit cards that offer exceptional value, especially with the waived annual fees.
A fantastic travel card with a huge welcome offer, good benefits, and perks for a moderate annual fee.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® card is one of the best travel rewards cards on the market. Its bonus categories include travel, dining, online grocery purchases, and streaming services, which gives you the opportunity to earn lots of bonus points on these purchases.
Additionally, it offers flexible point redemption options, no foreign transaction fees, and excellent travel insurance coverage including primary car rental insurance. With benefits like these, it’s easy to see why this card is an excellent choice for any traveler.
A top player in the high-end premium travel credit card space that earns 3x points on travel and dining while offering top luxury perks.
If you’re looking for an all-around excellent travel rewards card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® is one of the best options out there.
The card combines elite travel benefits and perks like airport lounge access, with excellent point earning and redemption options. Plus it offers top-notch travel insurance protections to keep you covered whether you’re at home or on the road.
Don’t forget the $300 annual travel credit which really helps to reduce the annual fee!
If you stay even a few nights a year at Hyatt properties, you’ll realize the value of holding the World of Hyatt card.
The card packs in a lot of value with its automatic elite status, elevated earnings on paid stays, the opportunity for award nights, and plenty of travel and shopping benefits.
Plus, with its low $95 annual fee, you’ll be able to keep the card long after your active-duty service to continue to enjoy award nights and Hyatt perks.
The information regarding The World of Hyatt Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
Yes, the World of Hyatt card offers good value for active-duty military members who frequent Hyatt properties. The card offers accelerated earning at Hyatt properties, a free night certificate at card renewal, complimentary Discoverist elite status, and a fast path to higher elite status.
The card also comes with several travel/shopping benefits and protections that can add value for a military member.
Yes, Chase will extend SCRA/MLA benefits and waive credit card fees, including the annual fee, for eligible spouses/domestic partners.
Chase validates the active-duty status of a military member via the Department of Defense database and the eligibility of the spouse/domestic partner via the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS).
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