I’ve been signing up for hotel co-brand credit cards as a way to decrease our total out pocket spending on travel. Several cards have sign-up bonuses good for multiple nights at low-cost properties or a long weekend at a luxury resort. The most recent card I signed up for is the World of Hyatt credit card from Chase.
I’ll admit that Hyatt was a hotel chain I didn’t pay much attention to before I started earning Chase Ultimate Rewards. Once I was able to transfer points from Chase to Hyatt, I noticed that they had hotels with award space in locations I wanted to stay like Hollywood, Sedona, Key West, and Raleigh. NC.
If you travel enough, there will always be something that bothers you. Sharon’s written about the behavior of people at airports. Personally, I’m always aggravated when hotels don’t put enough power outlets in a room but I can forgive hotels for that (well, to an extent) because maybe when the room was designed, people didn’t plug in as many things. My current pet peeve is different and something is so simple for a hotel to fix that I can’t stand when I have to deal with it.
When talking to people about miles and points, I’ve found explaining the concept of a point in one program is not worth the same as a point in another program is one of the most difficult things for people to understand. Using two hotel chains as an example, why are a Hyatt point and a Hilton point not equal? You have 1 mile/point in each program so they’re worth about the same, right? Wrong!
When booking a trip to a city you’ve never been to before, it’s easy to first look at the hotel chain you’re the most comfortable with. That may be because you have some sort of status with them or maybe you have a bunch of points in a loyalty program that you want to use. If this is your one and only search criteria, you’re doing yourself a huge disservice. Now, I’m not saying chain properties can’t be nice; they can be very much so. In fact, sometimes a chain hotel can be the best hotel in town. It’s just that if you NEVER search beyond that, you’ll potentially miss out on some wonderful places to stay.