Best Ways to Use Hyatt Category 1-4 Free Night Certificate

| Updated: November 7, 2019

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Want to know where you can redeem that free annual night from the World of Hyatt credit card? Did you earn a free night certificate by staying at several Hyatt brands — or reaching a Milestone Reward?

The free night vouchers are just one of the perks of the World of Hyatt program that are often overlooked. Here’s how you can earn free night stays on top of your Hyatt points and the best Hyatt hotels in the world for redeeming your vouchers.

What Are Hyatt Free Night Certificates?

The World of Hyatt program doesn’t just allow you to earn Hyatt points for free stays. You can also earn free night certificates that are good for a free stay at any Hyatt property with a category of 1 to 4.

Hyatt free night certificates can be earned as a Hyatt credit card holder and through a few other avenues like milestones and Brand Explorer. These certificates can be redeemed just like points for an award stay although they aren’t as flexible: Hyatt certificates do expire after 12 months and they require standard reward availability at the hotel.

As the free night certificate can be used at any Hyatt property with a hotel category of 1 to 4, it’s potentially worth up to 15,000 points. With Hyatt points valued at 1.7 cents each, the certificate can be worth up to $255 — or even more.

Here’s everything you should know about earning and using Hyatt rewards certificates — including the best Hyatt category 4 properties to maximize the value of your certificate.

Best use of Hyatt free night certificate
Best Use of Hyatt Free Night Certificate. Image courtesy by Hyatt.

How to Earn Hyatt Free Night Certificates

There are four ways to earn free Hyatt hotel certificates but the most well-known and easy option is having the World of Hyatt credit card from Chase. Here’s a look at how you can start earning your first Hyatt free night certificate.

Hyatt Credit Card

The most clear-cut way to earn a Hyatt free night certificate? Signing up for the World of Hyatt credit card. The Hyatt credit card offers at least one free night certificate every year as long as you keep your account active but you can earn a second certificate if you meet the spending threshold.

The World of Hyatt credit card has a $95 annual fee but even one of these certificates more than makes up for this cost.

You get a Hyatt free night anniversary certificate every year on your card membership anniversary. You can earn a second Hyatt credit card annual free night certificate if you spend at least $15,000 on your card during the year.

Milestone Benefits

Starting in 2019, the World of Hyatt program has a new milestone bonus feature that lets you earn free night certificates and room upgrade awards by meeting qualifying milestones.

Here’s how Milestone Rewards work:

Through Milestone Rewards, you earn rewards for every 10 elite qualifying nights.

The first free night certificate is earned after 30 qualifying nights or 50,000 base points during the calendar year.

Once you stay 60 qualifying nights or earn 100,000 base points and earn Globalist status, you get a Category 1-7 Hyatt free night certificate.

With the Milestone Rewards certificates, make sure you note that the certificates expire after 180 days.

Brand Explorer

One of the most overlooked features of the World of Hyatt is the Hyatt Brand Explorer promotion, a feature that encourages you to try new Hyatt brands with the ability to earn Hyatt free night certificates.

Through the Hyatt Brand Explorer promotion, you get a free night certificate for a Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel once you stay at 5 different Hyatt brands. There is no time limit to complete your stays.

Even award stays count toward Brand Explorer — not just paid stays!

Because Hyatt now has more than 15 brands, it’s possible to earn up to 3 free night certificates through Brand Explorer. The 3rd free night is available through the Two Roads Properties promotion, explained below.

Every time you stay at a new brand, it will be checked off your list on your World of Hyatt account.

Brand Explorer certificates can only be earned once, not every year like other free night certificates. These certificates are good for 1 year, however, not 180 days like Milestone Rewards certificates.

Two Road Properties Promotion

In 2019, Hyatt added four new brands to its lineup:

  • Joie de Vivre
  • Thompson Hotels
  • Destination Hotels
  • Alila

These brands are part of the Two Roads Properties acquisition. If you stay at all four of these brands by December 31, 2019, you will get a free night certificate from Hyatt. This is very similar to the Hyatt Brand Explorer free night offer except you only need to stay at four brands, not five.

Stays at these Two Roads Properties brands can be stacked with the Hyatt Brand Explorer promotion. If you stay at all 4, you will earn your first free night certificate. Just one more stay at another Hyatt brand will earn you yet another Hyatt certificate.

How to Use Hyatt Free Night Certificates

Redeeming your free night certificates is easy. You can either call Hyatt by phone at 1-800-304-9288 to book an award or you can use your certificate online through your World of Hyatt account.

After logging into your World of Hyatt account, search for a hotel at your destination and click on the box to “Use Points.”

You’ll see a list of hotels. Choose a hotel that requires no more than 15,000 points per night (Category 4). Once you choose a hotel, you will have the option to redeem points, use Points + Cash, or choose the “Promotional Award Free Night.” Choose the “Free Night” option and your certificate will be automatically applied to your booking.

Note: You can only use one free night certificate per booking online. If you have two certificates and search for a two-night stay, the option to use a free night award won’t appear.

It may be possible to use two certificates for one booking by calling Hyatt customer service. The other option is booking two separate one-night stays online.

You also won’t be able to apply room upgrade certificates to free night certificate stays — but you are still eligible for space-available elite status upgrades at check-in.

You can always see your available free night certificates (and room upgrade certificates) by going to the “My Account” section of your World of Hyatt account and clicking on the “My Awards” tab.

Are There Hyatt Free Night Certificate Restrictions?

There is some fine print when it comes to using your Hyatt free night voucher. The voucher is good for a free night in any Hyatt property that’s a Category 1-4 (unless you have a Category 1-7 certificate).

The certificate is only valid for 12 months from the issue date — except Milestone Rewards certificates, which expire in 180 days. This is when the stay must be completed, not just booked. You can only use the certificate when there is a standard award room available at the property.

Note that you can earn a Category 1-7 free night certificate as part of the Milestone benefits feature once you qualify for Globalist status. Be careful if you also have a Category 1-4 voucher, too.

When you redeem a voucher online, Hyatt will pull whichever certificate expires next for your booking. If you have a Category 1-7 voucher that expires first, you don’t want to accidentally redeem it for a Category 4 stay. In this case, it’s best to book by phone to make sure the correct certificate is used.

What Hyatt Hotels Can You Use a Free Night Certificate At?

You can use your Hyatt free night certificate at any World of Hyatt brand, including participating Small Luxury Hotels of the World hotels in the program.

You can even use free night certificates at MGM Resorts properties in Las Vegas, although you will still need to pay for resort fees.

Hyatt Award Chart

All participating World of Hyatt properties are assigned a category that determines the number of points you need for a free stay. Hyatt properties range from Category 1 to Category 8, although there are very few Category 8 properties.

There are only 26 Category 8 Hyatt hotels, most of them in Europe with 1 in Asia and 3 in the Caribbean.

Most Hyatt free night certificates are good for any Hyatt Category 1-4 hotels, or any property that requires 5,000 to 15,000 points per night. When you reach Globalist status, you can also earn a Category 1-7 free night certificate good for any hotel that requires up to 30,000 points per night.

With so few Category 8 hotels, these certificates can be used at virtually any Hyatt property worldwide that has standard room availability.

Best Uses of Hyatt Free Night Certificates

Knowing how to earn and use free night certificates through World of Hyatt is only half the challenge. If you don’t use your certificates strategically, you may be throwing away a significant amount of value. These free night certificates can be worth just $100 or up to $500 if you’re careful!

There are three strategies that really pay off when redeeming Hyatt free night certificates:

  • Use your certificate for a Category 4 hotel. Your certificate can be used at any Category 1-4 hotel, but why waste it on a category 1 property that only requires 5,000 points per night? Category 4 hotels are at the end of the spectrum of eligible hotels for your certificate and they’ll often give you the best value.
  • Use your certificate for the highest paid room rates. Another strategy is redeeming your certificates for stays when rates are very high, no matter the category of the hotel. Don’t assume that Category 4 hotels are always more expensive than Category 3 hotels, for example.
  • Combine your certificate with another reservation. While you can’t use several free night certificates for one reservation online, there are other options. You may want to redeem your certificate for the first or last night of a longer stay and make two separate reservations.
    This can help you redeem your award certificate for the most expensive night of your stay. You can also use it to maximize credit card benefits. The Citi Prestige credit card, for example, comes with a 4th night free perk. If you book a 5-night stay with a free night certificate and this perk, you’re really only paying for 3 nights.

Here’s a look at some of the best Hyatts in the world for using your Hyatt free night certificates sorted by region.

North America

The Confidante Miami Beach

Looking for the most expensive Hyatt category 4? The Confidante Miami Beach is usually around $150 to $250 but it can reach up to $600 per night during the peak tourist season in South Florida.

Take in all that Miami Beach has to offer at The Confidante. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

The Confidante Miami Beach in the Unbound Collection by Hyatt is located right on the beach on Collins Avenue in the heart of Miami Beach amid the city’s famous art deco district.

Originally built in the 1940s, the Confidante boasts a rooftop spa, beautiful mid-century decor, and elegant touches like rainfall showers, floor-to-ceiling windows, and spacious balconies.

Because using your certificate counts as a reward stay, the $30 resort fee at the Confidante is waived, no matter your elite status. You’ll still enjoy use of pool and beach chairs, fitness classes, a bicycle, and a helmet.

Hotel Del Sol in San Francisco

It’s no surprise that San Francisco is one of the most expensive cities in the U.S. to book a hotel. At Hotel Del Sol, your free night certificate can really go far, scoring you a room that can go for up to $600 or more per night.

Get an amazing value when you use your Hyatt free night certificate at Hotel Del Sol. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

Hotel Del Sol is just one mile from Fisherman’s Wharf and close to all of the city center’s major attractions. This family-friendly hotel was once a 1950’s motor lodge and has been transformed into a colorful and fun boutique hotel.

Gild Hall in New York City

Gild Hall is a boutique hotel in the financial district of New York City. Part of the Thompson Hotel brand, Gild Hall is one of the latest additions to the Hyatt family.

It offers real character just steps away from the hustle and bustle of Wall Street and the Seaport District.

Explore another side of Wall Street at Gild Hall. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

Enjoy the Gild Hall library lounge, explore the cobblestone streets downtown, and unwind in well-appointed guestrooms featuring rich leather and wood furniture.

Rates at Gild Hall can range from $200 to $450 depending on the season. Even at the low end of this range, you’re still getting a decent value for your free night voucher.

Asia

Asia follows North America in terms of the number of Hyatt properties where you can use your free night certificate. You won’t have trouble finding excellent properties throughout Asia that can give you a value of 2-3 cents or more per point.

Park Hyatt Saigon 
At Park Hyatt Saigon, rates usually range from $225 to $375 but can go as high as $585 which makes it one of the best Hyatt redemptions for your free night certificate.

Park Hyatt Saigon in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

Enjoy one of the most luxurious hotels in Ho Chi Minh City with well-appointed rooms that include in-room iPads and other upgrades plus a 20-meter outdoor pool and beautiful trattoria-style restaurant.

Grand Hyatt Taipei 
Head to Taiwan and you can redeem your free night certificate for a stay at Grand Hyatt Taipei, the only hotel in the city with a direct link to Taipei 101, the city’s famous 509-meter bamboo-shaped skyscraper.

Grand Hyatt Taipei is located in the heart of the Xinyi commercial district with upscale restaurants and entertainment options.

Grand Hyatt Taipei, the only hotel with a link to Taipei 101. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

At Grand Hyatt Taipei, rooms can go for $250 to $450 per night — a great value for your free night certificate.

Hyatt Regency Tokyo 
The Hyatt Regency Tokyo category 3 hotel is probably the best pick in Japan for using your Hyatt free night certificate. It may not be a category 4 property but rates here can still reach up to $400 per night.

Experience Japan in style at the best Hyatt category 4 in Tokyo. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

The Hyatt Regency Tokyo is right in the heart of Shinjuku with an indoor pool, spa, and 17 different room styles.

Latin America & Caribbean

The Caribbean and Latin America don’t have a lot of high-value redemption options for your free night certificates. Still, you’ll find some nice options that can net you at least 2 cents per point for your stay.

Park Hyatt Buenos Aires 
The Park Hyatt Buenos Aires offers one of the best values in Latin America. Rates at this 5-star hotel frequently top $500 per night — a value that’s hard to beat with your Hyatt free night voucher.

Take in the rich history, beauty, and luxury amenities of Park Hyatt Buenos Aires. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

The hotel itself is located in a beautiful and affluent area of Buenos Aires. The property is comprised of two buildings: a Neoclassical palace dating to the 1930s and the Posadas tower. The property has been fully restored with many details preserved including rich marble floors and 17th-century oak panels.

As soon as you arrive, you’ll fall in love with Palacio Duhau – Park Hyatt Buenos Aires which goes above and beyond with a world-class spa, butler service, unique ambiance, and the lush Duhau Gardens.

Stara Hamburgo

Stara Hamburgo is part of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World portfolio, delivering a comfortable and contemporary experience in the heart of Mexico City’s financial district.

You’ll notice eye-catching touches throughout the hotel, from its vertical gardens to the wrought iron Juliet balconies. Rates at Stara Hamburgo usually range from $150 to $350 per night, a fairly good value for your free night voucher.

Stara Hamburgo is part modern hotel and part Colonial Spanish townhouse for a unique stay in Mexico City. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

Europe

It’s harder to find Hyatt category 1-4 hotels in Europe than the United States as most properties won’t offer a value of more than 2 cents per Hyatt point. Here are some of the best Hyatt hotels for using your free night certificates.

Hyatt Regency Paris Étoile 
You may be surprised to learn that you can use your free night certificate for a stay in the heart of Paris within viewing distance of the Eiffel Tower. At the Hyatt Regency Paris Étoile, you’re just past the Arc de Triomphe in the only skyscraper hotel in Paris.

This hotel is the only one in the city with sweeping, panoramic views of Paris and its monuments. Hyatt Regency Paris Étoile is connected to the Palais des Congrès Paris for shopping, dining, and entertainment.

Some rooms at Hyatt Regency Paris Étoile feature views of the Eiffel Tower.

Looking for the most expensive Hyatt category 4 hotel in Europe? The Hyatt Regency Paris Étoile may be it. A stay here can range from $350 up to almost $600 per night during peak season.

Andaz Vienna am Belvedere 
Located in the heart of Vienna, Austria, the Andaz Vienna is one of the newest Andaz hotels in the world. This hotel, which opened in April 2019, is just outside Old Town.

It was inspired by the city’s unforgettable architecture, art, and sophistication. Each guestroom at the Andaz Vienna boasts stunning views with floor-to-ceiling windows plus vibrant artwork and interior design.

The sky bar Aurora at Andaz Vienna. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

On average, stays at this Category 3 hotel range from $200 to $300 per night.

Middle East & Africa

Africa and the Middle East don’t have a huge amount of category 3 and 4 hotels, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find some valuable redemption options in the region. Here are some of the best places to use your Hyatt free night certificate.

Hyatt Regency Casablanca 
Have you been dreaming of a trip to Morocco? Visit the Hyatt Regency Casablanca to do it in style. This French Colonial port city boasts stunning Art Deco architecture, a thriving arts scene, global cuisine, and an exciting nightlife.

At the Hyatt Regency Casablanca, rooms average around $300 per night — not a bad value for your free night voucher.

The Dar Beida Restaurant at Hyatt Regency Casablanca. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

Park Hyatt Zanzibar 
Park Hyatt Zanzibar is the ideal place to unwind and rest up for a trip to Kilimanjaro or Serengeti National Park. Experience everything the island of Zanzibar has to offer from the busy market and the Forodhani Gardens to the Palace Museum and famous Zanzibari doors.

Park Hyatt Zanzibar is a category 4 hotel with rates averaging between $350 and $550.

The unique beach resort of Park Hyatt Zanzibar. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

Hyatt Regency Riyadh Olaya 
Saudi Arabia’s Hyatt Regency Riyadh Olaya is a true gem in the region with a great mix of amenities for families and business travelers and a convenient location near the Riyadh International Convention Center and the King Abdullah Financial District.

Experience one of Saudi Arabia’s most luxurious new hotels at Hyatt Regency Riyadh Olaya. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

The hotel has a men-only indoor pool and separate fitness centers for women and women plus a rooftop spa and fine dining options. Stays are usually around $150 but rates can top $450 at this Hyatt category 4 hotel.

Australia & Pacific

You may not find many Hyatt Category 1-4 hotels Down Under, but there are a few gems worth your attention.

Hyatt Regency Saipan 
Treat yourself to an unforgettable experience at the Hyatt Regency Saipan located on the Northern Mariana Islands in the South Pacific. This region is known for its snorkeling, diving, golfing, and hiking.

At Hyatt Regency Saipan, you can enjoy sweeping views of the tropical gardens and witness sunsets over the ocean while remaining within the island’s entertainment and shopping center.

Enjoy your stay surrounded by a lush landscape with endless entertainment options. Image courtesy of Hyatt.

The Hyatt Regency Saipan is a category 3 hotel where stays average about $250 per night.

The George in Christchurch, New Zealand 
Want to redeem your free night certificate for a one-of-a-kind experience? The George is part of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World portfolio and it offers a truly relaxing setting along the Avon River.

The George offers a 1:1 staff to guest ratio with an intimate yet refined setting. Rooms at The George can range from $150 to $300 to deliver a decent value for your free night voucher.

The George in Christchurch, New Zealand offers a 1:1 staff to guest ratio with an intimate setting.

Wrap Up

World of Hyatt makes it easy to earn and redeem free night certificates no matter where your travels take you. The easiest way to earn Hyatt free night certificates is with the World of Hyatt credit card but you can also earn these extra free nights by exploring new Hyatt brands or reaching new milestones as you complete Hyatt stays.

These Hyatt hotels are only a sample of what you can enjoy when you’re ready to redeem your certificates. You may find resorts and hotels that offer an even better value — or merely a more convenient experience close to your next destination.

FAQ

Will I get my elite benefits on a Hyatt free night certificate stay?

Yes. All stays booked with a Hyatt free night certificate are eligible for your elite status benefits including space available upgrades, free breakfast, lounge access, and late check-out.

Do free night certificate stays count as elite qualifying nights?

Yes, stays on a free night certificate do count toward elite status qualification.

Can a Hyatt free night certificate be used for someone else?

As a general rule, the free night certificate stay from the World of Hyatt credit card must be booked in the name of the Hyatt member and primary cardmember. If you have Globalist status, you can use the certificate for a Guest of Honor booking for someone else, however. Your guest will even receive your Globalist benefits.

Is World of Hyatt membership free? How do I join?

Yes, World of Hyatt is absolutely free to join. You can visit the Hyatt website to sign up for your free World of Hyatt loyalty membership.

How do I earn World of Hyatt points?

You can earn Hyatt points by staying at Hyatt properties as well as partner M life Rewards (MGM Resorts) and Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH) properties. You can also earn World of Hyatt points by transferring Chase Ultimate Rewards points into the program, using the World of Hyatt credit card, flying on American Airlines, booking rental cars with Avis, holding Hyatt events, and booking FIND experiences. Check our comprehensive guide to earning Hyatt points to learn more.

How many points do I need for a free night at Hyatt?

Free night stays at Hyatt start at 5,000 points and go up to 40,000 points per night depending on the hotel category. Upgraded club rooms and suites require more points per night.

How do I redeem my World of Hyatt free night certificate?

Redeeming your certificate can be done by calling Hyatt at 1-800-304-9288 or searching for a property online through your Hyatt account, choosing “Use Points” and selecting the “free night” option once you choose a hotel.

What hotels can I use my Hyatt free night certificate?

You can use your free night certificate at any Hyatt brand as well as MGM Resorts in Las Vegas and participating Small Luxury Hotels of the World properties.

How many Hyatt free night certificates can I earn?

You can earn up to 2 free night certificates with your World of Hyatt credit card per year, up to 3 one-time certificates through the Brand Explorer program (including the Two Road Properties promotion), and up to 2 free night certificates per year through Milestone Rewards.

Does Hyatt offer 5th night free?

No, unfortunately, Hyatt does not offer a 5th night free benefit like Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors.

Can I buy World of Hyatt points?

Yes, you can buy up to 55,000 Hyatt points per year in increments of 1,000. You will pay $24 per 1,000 points. Sometimes there are promotions to get bonus points when you buy Hyatt points, though. For example, a recent promotion offered 40% more bonus points when you bought at least 5,000 Hyatt points.

Do Hyatt Free Nights expire?

Yes, your free night certificates do expire. Most certificates expire after 1 year. Both Milestone Rewards certificates expire in just 180 days. Note that you need to book and complete your stay before the certificate expires; just booking the stay isn’t enough.

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