This morning I wrote about Hyatt’s decision to drop the Passport Escape award from its program.
I like the award a lot, I used it myself earlier in the year, and I am disappointed to see that it’s going away on November 1. And not just because I hate to see options of any kind for members disappear, I viewed this as a really valuable option offered by Hyatt.
Sometimes I shoot first and ask questions later. I need to get better about holding my opinions until I have all of the information. Shortly before I posted about the change, I asked the Hyatt PR folks if they could comment on why they were eliminating the award. I didn’t hear back immediately. It’s not unreasonable for it to take a couple of hours. I need more patience.
I did hear back from Hyatt, in fact I got an email from Jeff Zidell, Hyatt’s Vice President for the Gold Passport program. And he gave me a perfectly good reason for their eliminating the award,
[W]e are making investments in those benefits that customers value and use. In this case, we had approximately 100 members a year redeem a Passport Escape award, and it did not make sense for us to maintain the training and communication infrastructure needed to support a benefit with such low usage.
That’s perfectly fair. They weren’t getting much bang for the buck by offering it. I knew about it, I liked it, but it’s not like even I’m writing about it a lot although perhaps I should have been.
I could fault Gold Passport for not doing enough to promote the opportunity to their members. But if it’s not something members are clamoring for such that they would even learn about the option, then I suppose my estimation of the value of the award may differ from that of the program membership as a whole.
So while I am going to miss the award — as will the 100 other people claiming it — but it’s probably not reasonable to say this is as great a loss as I thought.