August 17, 2022
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The World of Hyatt Credit Card (review) is a perks-rich card. The $95 annual fee card is worth holding onto for the ongoing perks, and it’s a card that can also be worth spending money on, especially if you’re a Hyatt loyalist.

Some benefits of the card are based on the calendar year, while some are based on the anniversary year. In this post I wanted to talk specifically about the difference between the two, and the rules associates with different perks.

Calendar year vs. anniversary year

First let me make a general distinction between calendar years and anniversary years, as it pertains to credit cards. Credit card issuers will offer some benefits every calendar year, while they’ll offer other benefits every anniversary year.

What’s the distinction?

  • Benefits issued each calendar year would be awarded once between January 1 and December 31 of each year, regardless of when you opened the card
  • Benefits issued each anniversary year would be awarded once in every 12 month period coinciding with when you opened the card; in other words, if you open a card on August 1, you can expect that’s roughly the start of your anniversary year

Understanding World of Hyatt Credit Card benefit “years”

The World of Hyatt Credit Card offers the following benefits that are either tied to spending, or tied to years (either calendar or anniversary):

  • Five elite qualifying nights every year
  • Two elite qualifying nights for every $5,000 spent
  • A Category 1-4 free night certificate annually
  • An additional Category 1-4 free night certificate when you spend $15,000 annually

Let’s take a look at exactly how each of these benefits is awarded in relation to the calendar or anniversary year.

Five elite nights each calendar year

The World of Hyatt Credit Card offers five elite qualifying nights toward status every calendar year, which can make it easier to earn Globalist status or Milestone Rewards. That means if you got the card now (August 2022), you’d get five elite nights for 2022, then next year you’d get five elite nights for 2023, etc.

The terms state that these credits will post within eight weeks of opening the card, and then within eight weeks of January 1 in every subsequent year. However, anecdotally the elite nights tend to post much faster than that.

Access club lounges as a Hyatt Globalist member

Two elite nights for every $5,000 spent

The World of Hyatt Credit Card offers two additional elite qualifying nights for every $5,000 spent on the card. This benefit isn’t in any way tied to the anniversary or calendar year. That’s to say that your spending keeps rolling over toward that $5,000 requirement, regardless of your anniversary year or the calendar year.

In other words, if you were at $4,900 of spending in December 2022, and then spent $100 in January 2023, then you’d get those two elite nights in January, once your statement closes. These credits typically post within a few days of the statement closing date where you complete the spending requirement, and then the elite nights are backdated to your statement closing date.

Depending on your elite status situation, it could make sense to be strategic about when you pass this spending threshold.

Get suite upgrades as a Hyatt Globalist member

One free night award every anniversary year

One of the benefits that makes the World of Hyatt Credit Card most worthwhile is that it offers a Category 1-4 free night award on your account anniversary every year.

The terms state that it can take up to 10 weeks after your account anniversary for the free night to post, though in my experience it posts shortly after your anniversary statement closes. The certificate will be valid for a year from when it’s issued.

This is in no way tied to the calendar year, but rather is tied to the rolling 12 month period of your membership year for the card.

Redeem your free night award at the Wellem Dusseldorf

One free night award for spending $15K every calendar year

One of the great incentives for spending money on the World of Hyatt Credit Card is that you get a second Category 1-4 free night certificate if you spend at least $15,000 on the card in a calendar year.

Regardless of when you opened your card, this is based on your total spending between January 1 and December 31 of a given year. In other words, if you opened your card in August 2022, you could earn a free night award for spending in 2022, one for spending in 2023, etc.

You don’t have to wait until your account anniversary to get this certificate, but rather it should post to your account within a few weeks of the closing of the statement where you complete the spending. The certificate will then be valid for a year from when it’s issued.

Redeem your free night award at the Hyatt Regency LAX

What about the World of Hyatt Business Credit Card?

The World of Hyatt Business Card (review) was introduced in 2021. The $199 annual fee card also has the potential to be lucrative, though the card does have a totally different set of benefits. There’s not quite as much tied to calendar year vs. anniversary year, though I figured I’d cover the basics:

  • The card offers up to $100 in Hyatt credits annually, where when you spend $50 or more you’ll receive a $50 statement credit, up to two times; this is based entirely on the anniversary year, and not the calendar year
  • The card offers five elite nights for every $10,000 spent on the card in a calendar year; unlike on the personal card, the spending counter does reset with each calendar year, regardless of what progress you’ve made toward the requirement
  • When you spend $50,000 on the card in a calendar year, you’ll receive 10% of redeemed points back, up to 20,000 points; this only applies for the remainder of the calendar year in which you completed the spending

Bottom line

Both the World of Hyatt Credit Card and World of Hyatt Business Card offer great benefits, though I know some people get confused about the distinction between calendar year and anniversary year. Hopefully the above clears things up, as the cards do have some variability regardling the timeline with which benefits are awarded.

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