Complete the Hyatt Diamond Challenge in 9 Nights With the Citi Prestige Card

Random thought of the evening.

I’m going through my cards and want to dump:

And replace them with:

The hitch is that you have to wait ~8 days between applications with Citi, so I’m not sure which of their cards to get first. But I’m warming up to the idea of Category 1 and 2 Hilton hotels – there’s a ton of value to be had there.


Citi Prestige + Hyatt Diamond Challenge

Via The Points Guy, tomorrow is the last day to sign up for the Hyatt Diamond Challenge (something that’s always tempted me). You’ll have 60 days to complete it when you sign up (so until September 30th).

And via View From the Wing, the Citi Prestige card’s 4th night free benefit is “too good” to last. (I agree.)

Hyatt hotels are easily bookable with the Citi Prestige travel program. (Here’s the link to Carlson Wagonlit to search.)

A quick search in Dallas turned up 6 Hyatts, most under $100 a night

A quick search in Dallas turned up 6 Hyatts, most under $100 a night

If you book a 4-night stay for $100 a night, you’d pay $300 (after the Citi Prestige statement credit).

Do this 3 times in 60 days, pay $900, get Hyatt Diamond status. Any many hotels are available for under $100.

If you have Hyatt stays coming up anyway, this might be something to mix-and-match with cash + points stays.

And hotels booked with the Citi Prestige card do earn elite credit.

What’s Hyatt Diamond status worth?

If you use the 4 annual Suite Upgrades judiciously… a lot.

And if you like free breakfast, that could add up fast, too.

This challenge is best for people who travel a lot and stay at Hyatt hotels. If you travel 15 nights a year, you won’t get much value from status and should probably just stick to the Chase Hyatt Visa and Hyatt Platinum.

But if you stay often with Hyatt, the value could really start to shine.

As a Diamond guest, you’ll get:

  • A 30% point bonus when choosing points

  • The best room available upon arrival, excluding suites

  • Exclusive access to the Regency Club or Grand Club lounge featuring complimentary continental breakfast and evening hors d’oeuvres. Enjoy daily complimentary full breakfast in hotels without a club lounge

  • A suite upgrade at the time of reservation 4 times annually on eligible paid nights

  • A special welcome point bonus or food and beverage amenity during each stay

  • A nightly room refresh

  • Complimentary premium Internet access where available

  • Check-in at a dedicated area for elite members

  • 48-hour room guarantee

  • 4:00 p.m. late check out on request

  • 2 complimentary one-time-use United Club passes annually

  • Guest of Honor, share your Diamond benefits with friends and family when you redeem points for a free night for them in 2015

To sign up for the Diamond challenge, call Hyatt at 800-228-3360.

If you complete the challenge, you’ll get Diamond status through February 2017. That’s 19 months of Diamond-ness!

The Citi Prestige angle

So, I don’t have a Citi Prestige now, but if I signed up soon and booked Hyatt stays, I could start using the 4th night free benefit when the card came in (and Citi can expedite shipping on new accounts if you call them).

But just because you can get the 4th night free doesn’t mean you should.



I have a 3-night stay at a Hyatt coming up next month. It would be easy to cancel it, book 4 nights instead, and leave after the 3rd night. Or just stay and enjoy the 4th night… free.

That would already be 1/3 of the Diamond Challenge.

Stay 12 nights, pay for 9 - get Hyatt Diamond status

Stay 12 nights, pay for 9 – get Hyatt Diamond status

The catch then is… do I go out of my way to take another trip to meet the challenge? Do I book the cheapest Hyatt just to get status?

Will being Diamond come in handy many times before February 2017?

So I’m wondering how much I’d actually get to enjoy being Diamond with Hyatt. I must say though, the idea of paying for 9 nights instead of 12 is a lot more palatable.

But for some, this combo could be a great way to earn status for 25% less. Not to mention all the points you’d earn in the process (from both Hyatt and Citi).

Bottom line

If you’ve had your eye on the Hyatt Diamond Challenge, the iron is hot. Strike.

If you’re going to pay for it, you can open a Citi Prestige card, get the sign-up bonus of 50,000 Citi ThankYou points, and earn Diamond status with the 4th night free benefit – pay for 9 of the 12 nights. Get the other 3 for free. And you’ll still have $250 in airline credit to use, too (on any airline).

This could be useful for some. You can search for Hyatt hotels on the Carlson Wagonlit website (the one Citi uses to book hotels). And here’s an overview of Hyatt Diamond status.

If you’re thinking of getting a new card, including the Citi Prestige, consider using my links. (And thank you for doing so!)

I’m on the fence about whether to do this or not… I’ll sleep on it.

If you’re in the same boat, tomorrow (July 31st) is D-Day for the Hyatt Diamond Challenge (at least for now)!

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About Harlan

Just a dude living in Memphis, traveling, and working toward financial independence.

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  1. I like the idea of the Hyatt Diamond Challenge because I like “challenges” and completing requirements and such. But I just don’t travel enough (and especially at Hyatts) to make it worth it. I’d suggest taking a hard look at your upcoming travel to see if it would be worth your $900. That’s not a ton for Diamond Status if you travel a lot, but it’s still a good chunk of change.

    You could almost start a new airbnb rental lease with that 😉

    • Exactly. The biggest allure (for me) is that the status is good until February 2017. I don’t have any trips planned for 2016 (or beyond) yet, but I almost certainly will. It’s a good chunk of change… but not impossible… #torn

  2. I like that out of the box thinking, Harlan!

    Do the challenge, I think it is worth it even if mattress running and then report back during the course of the next 2 years about your great status enhanced trips!!

    • LOL #temptation. Can’t decide if I’ll go for it now or after they upgrade their systems. Guess I have the day to think it over some more! 😉

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