One of the best things about miles and points is traveling and helping other friends and family members to travel too. After all, what’s the fun in traveling if you don’t have some great travel companions to come along! My sister and her family are planning a trip down to visit us, and we wanted my parents to come down too. But trying to fit 12 people into our house was already causing it to burst at the seams. So my sister and I thought that my parents might be more comfortable at a hotel. That would give them their own space to relax as needed and a “safe” place to get away from the noise if they needed to. Plus, we might be able to take some advantage of the pool or other hotel amenities.
(image from Hyatt)
Hyatt Place Cincinnati / Northeast
I looked at a variety of different hotels in the area and settled on the Hyatt Place Cincinnati-Northeast. It seemed like a decent hotel, not too far away and had good reviews. As an added bonus, it’s a Category 1 Hyatt which means that it is only 5,000 Hyatt points per night. I booked the hotel and I thought that everything was all set. I booked it for 4 people since I figured there might be time when some of the grandkids might want to spend some time there, depending on what all is going on while they’re here.
A call from Hyatt
But only a few days before the reservation was supposed to start, I got a call from someone at the Hyatt Global Service Center. She said that the hotel was ending its relationship with Hyatt (not clear if that was the hotel leaving Hyatt or Hyatt kicking them out) before our reservation. She said that meant that we would not be able to use Hyatt points for our reservation. I wasn’t at my computer when she called, so I couldn’t check on anything, but what she said was that they could move me to a different Category 1 Hyatt in the area for no additional charge, but if I wanted to pick a different (more expensive) Hyatt, then I would have to pay the extra points or cash.
I wasn’t sure if that was official policy or not, so I told her that I didn’t want to do anything right now. I know that this isn’t the same thing as when a hotel is oversold and you get “walked” (where the “walking” hotel might put you up at basically any hotel and/or provide additional compensation. But still, this is not a great experience from Hyatt and I’m surprised that their policy basically appears to be “we’re canceling your reservation and you can book whatever else you want at your own cost”
The Weird Thing
The weird thing is that on the hotel website, they are still allowing points reservations, and the points calendar that you can look at shows points costs well into 2023 as well
They also haven’t actually canceled my reservation – it still shows up as a valid reservation
What to do
Has anyone else ever run into this situation, where a hotel is leaving the brand or chain and they are trying to cancel your reservation. For me, it’s not going to end up being a huge deal, but it is at least a minor inconvenience. So I’m curious to know what others have done in this situation.
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We stayed at this Hyatt a few weeks ago when going to Kings Island. I would imagine it’s Hyatt ending the relationship. We were given keys to a room that had peoples stuff in it. The next room was filthy, the sofa bed smelled like urine. It was the worst hotel I’ve seen and definitely not anywhere close to what I except from Hyatt. Only positive is there are lots of dining options near by.
Ugh. The reviews at the other Hyatt Place nearby (in Blue Ash) are also kind of hit or miss. Some great reviews and others that are like yours 🙁
I made a reservation at a Hilton Garden Inn using points. Later, Hilton Honors called me to say that the hotel wouldn’t accept the reservation. It seems that there was a convention nearby and the hotel wanted top dollar from paid reservations. Hilton Honors asked if another hotel was ok but quickly offered to pay the original Hilton Garden Inn their going rate instead of the behind the scenes Hilton Honors rate.
To me, that seems like a better way to handle it.
In my experience (former front desk supervisor for 1 soon-to-be deflagged Marriott), when a hotel is de-flagged, you’re at the mercy of whichever CSR you talk to about changes. official policies usually are to help find another, similar reservation, but that’s’ it. To avoid dealing with potentially thousands of extra upgrades, they’ll just help you move (and they usually don’t proactively move you for myriad valid reasons).
So best advice IMO is to HUACA a couple of times but move on if there’s nothing beyond “go to this other cat 1”. It’s really not worth the headache given that this time it’s just an inconvenience and not “I’m stuck overseas without a hotel.”
Hope you’re doing well, Dan, btw. Long-time, no write.