Hyatt Room Charge Issues – Their Rules Are Not Customer Friendly
I wrote about why you should bill everything back to your room last week. That still holds fast and true but I have noticed something with Hyatt that isn’t quite right. I am having some Hyatt room charge issues and I wanted to share them with you. Some of the issues are because Hyatt’s terms are just not very customer friendly. The rest of it is because I think they have an I.T. issue for award stays.
Hyatt’s Room Charge Rules Are Kind Of Terrible
The whole reason to charge everything back to your hotel room is so that you get bonus points for the charges. You should earn points, according to your elite status, on everything that is charged back. You will then earn points just as if it is a cash stay rate. This is how it works with Hilton and others but it appears not so much with Hyatt.
See Hyatt picks and chooses what will count. With Hilton and others pretty much anything that I can bill back to the room earns points. But Hyatt has some pretty big exclusions that don’t earn points:
- Any restaurant on property not owned an operated by Hyatt. Even if you can charge it to your room.
- Any gift shop or retail store on property
- Valet parking charges (I did earn points on self parking but not valet – I am not sure if self parking should count or not but it does)
- Upgrade charges on award stays
Here are the terms listed on their site:
“Eligible Incidental Charges” vary depending on the applicable hotel, resort, or other participating property, but generally include resort/destination fee, additional-cleaning fees (where applicable), spa, food, beverage and lounge expenditures (except at outlets not operated by the hotel or resort) and other charges, such as laundry, dry cleaning, and telephone. Points will not be awarded on alcoholic beverage purchases in certain jurisdictions/countries or at certain properties.
Eligible Incidental Charges also exclude – and, unless specified in a specific promotion, points are not awarded for – retail outlet charges, service charges, taxes, casino charges, incentive travel awards, gratuities, pay-per-view in-room movies, gift certificates/gift cards, or vouchers, or for services provided by outside vendors.
Are There Issues With Award Stays Never Crediting Properly?
I went back through my previous stays, almost all of which were award stays. I noticed multiple times that I was not credited for things billed back to the room. So I reached out to the Hyatt Twitter team to see why I was not getting ANY points for this folio:
I was told that upgrade charges do not earn points on award stays…uh say what?!? Why wouldn’t an upgrade charge, which is essentially a room charge, not count? I was then told alcohol did not earn points. Even though it says above that “some” hotels may not earn points on alcohol I get the feeling it is all hotels. They did offer me some points for my room charges from the pool restaurant which did not properly earn points for the food we ordered.
I see a pattern that things do not code properly on award stays and I think it could be an I.T. issue. Go through your old folios and tell me what you see.
What A Terrible Policy
These Hyatt room charge issues are more than a simple glitch or something not working properly. They are actually just a terrible policy that reduces value for their customers. If there is something on property that you can bill back to the room then it should earn points. Whether Hyatt owns the restaurant or not they benefit from the business. They pay Hyatt rent after all, don’t they? And if you can’t earn points on at the establishment then we shouldn’t be able to do a room charge. How else are we supposed to know what Hyatt does and doesn’t own in their own building?
I stayed at Hilton before moving to Hyatt on my last trip. I billed restaurant charges and store charges back to the room. Not only did I get points for the charges like I should but the charges also triggered all of the current Hilton bonus offers. I ended up getting 40 points per dollar earning on all of those purchases because of this. That offers me value and makes me more willing to pay the overpriced on site prices. But going forward with these Hyatt room charge issues I won’t be dropping money on property. What is the point?