What Hyatt’s CEO Thinks of World of Hyatt and Emirates Blankets Made of Plastic

News and notes from around the interweb:

  • Paypal co-founder and early Facebook investor Peter Thiel famously quipped his disappointment in Silicon Valley that, “we wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters.” Now the head of Airbus thinks they’ll have a prototype flying car by the end of the year.

  • Read plenty of comments from Hyatt’s CEO on changes to Hyatt’s loyalty program.

    Unlike the CEO of Aer Lingus who gaslights their former program to justify recent changes, Mark Hoplamazian acknowledges Hyatt Gold Passport worked well and was liked by members. He doesn’t hide the focus on ‘high-end travelers’ which is decidedly not the 25 stay Diamond. While they have different tactics for engaging members under World of Hyatt, it’s not at all clear how one program or another is more of an “engagement platform” as he suggests (let alone one that “build[s] community”).

    Hoplamazian believes that “that the feedback overall has been quite positive” for the new program.

    Grand Hyatt Kuala Lumpur Sky Lobby

  • American plans to upgauge its Dallas – Joplin flight to a CR7 regional jet and eventually to a CR9. That’s not super interesting in itself (and neither is the article’s claim that “[b]oth the CRJ-700 and CRJ-900 are dual-class aircraft, meaning they will offer both business-class and first-class seating.”).

    I did find this notable, however — the airport needs upgrades to be able to service larger regional jets.

    [T]he Joplin Regional Airport will have to spend approximately $30,000 on support equipment such as power supplies and ways to load drinking water in order to service the larger aircraft that will begin serving Joplin this year.

  • Wideroe to become an Embraer E190 operator. And here I thought Wideroe was just an online travel agency site for booking United tickets without fuel surcharges.

    Back in the fall [of 2013] Wideroe was pricing most United tickets to Europe without a fuel surcharge. There was even speculation that once they had discovered the glitch that they were the ones behind spreading the word about it online in order to generate booking revenue from United.

  • Emirates’s New Economy Blankets Are Made Out Of 100% Recycled Plastic

  • United introduced a ‘performance guarantee’ for corporate customers that it wouldn’t perform worse than American in on-time flights and cancellations. It didn’t have to pay out in 2016. Now they’re adding guarantee categories for 2017: fewer mishandled checked bags and lower carbon footprint. (Technically the guarantee is that they will be better than American or Delta but they’re unlikely to beat Delta’s reliability.)

    Some contend United ‘pads its schedule’ since flights take longer than they used to and they even schedule more time for overlapping routes than American does. I’d frame it differently: they’re realistic about when their flights are going to arrive.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. What reality is the Hyatt CEO living in when he states “that the feedback overall has been quite positive” for the new program. Has he read anything or is he simply going on what his Marketing Team is spinning since they came up with the pile of ………?

  2. @Christain, my thoughts exactly. But then again what else would you expect him to say? My thoughts are that he’s not being entirely honest and the PR team wanted to put a positive quote out there in an attempt to get the rank and file in line of which currently aren’t and Hyatt is concerned. Once WOH goes live Hyatt will begin to see the damage, and only then make some adjustments. What a ridiculous excescise all this is though especially given Gold Passport was well liked and working. If anything tweek it; don’t scuttle it.

  3. I didn’t hit my thresholds for anyone last year, but Marriott was nice and let me keep my Gold status. I’ll be happy to make 10 SPG stays and maintain mid-tier status. Thanks, Marriott/SPG. Bye bye Hyatt.

  4. Overall positive…that’s amusing.

    I’ve got 6 nights left of Diamond stays this month and then it’s on to greener pastures.

  5. @Evan – If you weight the feed back by lower vs higher margin customers you may have a different impression.

    25 night Diamonds on cheap rates weren’t high margin customers.

  6. @Greg

    I would disagree with your assessment of dissatisfaction demographics. WOH hurts everyone and many more than just 25 stay Diamonds are not happy. I’m a current Diamond (soon to be Globalist) on 57 nights and I’m not happy with the changes at all. I have many points of contention with the new program, the least of which is the complete evisceration of the Hyatt credit card and the inability to acquire qualifying nights with spend.

    Additionally, Hyatt is essentially making their loyalty program a revenue based program and time and time again it has been shown such a system does not drive loyalty, retention, or a revenue premium….Delta’s CEO admitted as much. Not to mention by moving to a system that is essentially revenue based Hyatt clearly doesn’t understand opportunity costs and is limiting its customer base. That doesn’t sound like growth to me and their footprint is already marginal at best as it is.

  7. @Gary

    Have you been able to confirm with Hyatt whether or not all Globalists will receive a free cat 1-7 night on March 1st, 2017 as reported by onemileatatime?

    “Globalist members on March 1, 2017, will all get a free night at any Category 1-7 property just for being part of the program.”

    This information has been repeated in several blogs, but I’ve never seen anyone confirming it with Hyatt. Hopefully you’ll know more 🙂

  8. @Gary:

    Ah, thank you so much! Were you able to confirm the expiration on that certificate with Hyatt? Is it 120 days?

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