Here’s Why I Canceled My #1 Ranked Card, the Chase Hyatt Visa

For over six months the Chase Hyatt Visa held the top spot on my rankings of best travel credit cards.  Patty and I practiced what I preached – we both obtained and held the card for over three years.  However, we both canceled our cards recently.  Find out why in this post!

We Had Obtained Chase Hyatt Visas for Four Reasons

We primarily got the card for its lucrative signup bonus – 2 free nights at any Hyatt.  That bonus can be worth up to about $1,200!

Second, we got the card because of its reasonable spending requirement.  Whereas the spending requirement for some cards has risen to $4k or even $5k, the Chase Hyatt Visa typically requires only $1k of spending to get the signup bonus. [Nov 2016 update: Chase has raised minimum spending requirement to $2k.]

Third, we really liked that the annual fee was waived for the first year. [Nov 2016 update: Chase’s public offer no longer includes waiver of annual fee for first year.]

The fourth major reason we got the card: Upon renewal each year the cardholder gets a free night award for use at any Category 1-4 hotel.  This more than offsets the $75 annual fee.

Free Night Awards from Signup Used at the Andaz Maui

You can use free night awards from the Chase Hyatt credit card signup bonus at hotels such as the Andaz Maui, shown here, or even at the all-inclusive Hyatts in Jamaica, Cancun and Los Cabos! You can save over $1,000 with the free night awards.
We used our free night awards from the Chase Hyatt signup bonus at the Andaz Maui.

We wasted no time in putting our signup bonus to use.  Redeeming the signup bonus free nights – four total between us – at the Andaz Maui worked out excellent.

Rooms were going for about $350/night so we got a total value of $1,400 from the two signup bonuses.

The hotel was a great first “home” on our around-the-world honeymoon, offering us a chic, relaxing scene to unwind from the stress of the wedding buildup.  Though we didn’t have much trouble securing nights at the hotel then, there are recent reports that redeeming free night awards at the Andaz Maui is now more difficult.

Anniversary Nights Got Us Free Rooms in St. Louis and Chicago

After our first renewal of the card we used our anniversary free night award at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch.  Our room offered a direct and beautiful view of the arch!  Going rate at the time was $320/night so we got $640 of lodging for $150.  Not bad at all!

Click for video…

We redeemed the anniversary free night awards issued in August 2015 in July of this year.  This time we turned them in for a two-night stay at the Hyatt Regency Chicago.  What would have been a hotel bill of about $500 was covered by the awards, essentially costing us $150.

View from Hyatt Regency Chicago of Chicago River and Lake Michigan
The Hyatt Regency Chicago overlooks the Chicago River emptying into Lake Michigan. Not a bad view for what was essentially $75/night.

Canceling Took Less Than Two Minutes

I called the phone number on the back of my Chase Hyatt and told the agent I was looking to cancel the card.  She asked only one question and then processed the cancellation (without mentioning any retention offer).

Wait…Why Did I Cancel?

So why in the world did I just cancel the card I consider the best travel credit card around?  Well, in a nutshell, because the card and its signup bonus is so good, I want to get it all over again!

I have visions of re-obtaining the card in a month or so, meeting the spend requirement and reaping two free night awards for any Hyatt!  Two free nights at any Hyatt of course trump one free night at a cat 1-4 Hyatt.  In fact I may be able to even get a $50 statement credit with a new Chase Hyatt in addition to the two free night awards!

It’s Over 24 Months Since I Received the Signup Bonus

Chase generally applies a 24-month bonus eligibility policy on credit cards.  If you haven’t received a signup bonus for a given card within the last 24 months (and you don’t have that card open), you’re eligible for a signup bonus for that card again.  This language is present on most, if not all, Chase Hyatt application pages.

Since I received the 2 free night awards in October of 2013, I’m well past the 24 month cutoff.Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus Card 50,000 50k Point Offer Image The Honeymoon Guy

The 5/24 Rule Doesn’t Seem to Apply to the Chase Hyatt Currently

Though there are some Chase cards I am unlikely to get approved for due to the 5/24 rule, the Hyatt card doesn’t seem to have been included into that group by Chase as of writing.

I’m Compiling Ideas for Use of Free Nights

If I get another Chase Hyatt card, Patty and I will try to balance two elements in using the card’s signup bonus: 1) maximizing value by staying at a high-end Hyatt and 2) choosing a destination that aligns with our interests.

I previously wrote about great uses of the free night awards.  I’ll be thrilled if we can align vacation plans such that we stay at one of the properties on that list.

Wrapping It Up

By canceling my Chase Hyatt Visa at this time I’ve foregone a Category 1-4 room at the effective price of $75 but opened up the possibility of getting two free nights at any Hyatt for no direct cost that same $75 (the $1k $2k I spend to earn that signup bonus could instead go onto a 2% cash back card, earning me $20 $40).

So at first glance it looks like I’m trading up to the two free nights at any Hyatt for an opportunity cost of a mere $20 $40!  If I can get the Chase Hyatt Visa offer which includes a $50 statement credit I’ll actually be netting $30 $10in addition to the two free night awards!

I’ll report back soon on whether or not I am approved for another Chase Hyatt Visa! [Nov 2016 update: After Chase weakened the signup offer for the Chase Hyatt I put my plans to reapply on hold for the moment.]

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Do you have the Chase Hyatt Visa?  Have you churned it?  Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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10 thoughts on “Here’s Why I Canceled My #1 Ranked Card, the Chase Hyatt Visa

  1. I’m hoping to do the same thing end of October and reapply in December. Hope 5/24 holds on this card that long!
    @sage The free nighst expire after a year.

    1. Nice. Check back here as I’ll likely apply for another Chase Hyatt by early September and I’ll report on how it goes.

      You’re right – the free night awards, both the signup bonus free night awards and the anniversary free night, must be USED within a year from the issuance date. In the past, with a bit of smooth-talking you could get an agent to extend the expiration date. That’s no longer possible. The expiration date is shown in your account info on the Hyatt Gold Passport (HGP) site.

      If you have Platinum or Diamond status you may be able to get the free night awards converted to HGP points.

    1. Also, how will you bypass the 5/24 rule? I can’t believe you haven’t applied for less than 5 cards in the last 24 months…knowing what you do.

    2. Hi Sunny,

      With Chase you can’t get the card/bonus again if you still have the same type of card open. Here’s the verbiage from their offer:

      This product is not available to either (i) current cardmembers of this credit card, or (ii) previous cardmembers of this credit card who received a new cardmember bonus for this credit card within the last 24 months.

      I included a section in the post on the 5/24 topic but you may have missed it. Here it is again:

      Though there are some Chase cards I am unlikely to get approved for due to the 5/24 rule, the Hyatt card doesn’t seem to have been included into that group by Chase as of writing.

    1. Hi Chad!

      I have not yet applied for the Chase Hyatt again. After I wrote this post, Chase weakened the signup offer for the Hyatt card. That, combined with the fact that I have a solid pile of hotel points/awards right now, led me to change my mindset a bit. I may apply again in the future if we eye up a destination which has a particularly attractive Hyatt hotel.

      Thanks for reading! If you enjoy the content, could you do me a huge favor and share the site on Facebook or Twitter?

  2. Hey Chad!
    The best Hyatt redemptions my wife and I have found are at the Hyatt Zilara (adults only) and Hyatt Ziva properties, which are all-inclusive. We’ve been to the Hyatt Zilara in Cancun twice and the Hyatt Zilara in Montego Bay once. Both resorts were incredible and were by far the most upscale resort hotels we have ever stayed at. The Montego Bay location is really good because it’s 2 properties in 1, Hyatt Zilara and Hyatt Ziva, side by side, making it one huge property with lots of good restaurants, upscale bars and beautiful pools, all onsite. Don’t know how any other location can beat it when everything is included, even top shelf liquors. The Montego Bay location even has an airport VIP lounge and transportation to and from included. We’re intending to cancel and re-sign up sometime in 2017 and hopefully go to Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos or Puerto Vallarta.

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