Last year, Hyatt made several significant changes to their loyalty program, which have generally received negative reviews. The biggest changes were a new terrible naming system for each elite tier level, and also increasing the nights required for their top tier status from 50 to 60 nights.
The good news is that Hyatt recently announced that free award nights will now count towards your required nights for achieving elite status. This falls in line with other competitors, including our preferred loyalty program, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG).
While we're not big fans of Hyatt's “World of Hyatt” loyalty program, we do love their hotels. Using points to stay at the Park Hyatt, Hyatt Andaz, or all-inclusive Hyatt Ziva and Zilara properties are some of favorite uses of travel rewards. While I no longer have status with Hyatt, it's great to see they're making it a little easier to obtain elite status, and hopefully this is sign of more things to come in 2017.