Hyatt Changes 24 Hour Cancellation Policy

We’ve seen Marriott, IHG, and Hilton recently change their cancellation policies to force customers to make changes at least 48 hours or more before their hotel stay in order to avoid any penalties and obtain a refund. This was a change from the prior policies that allowed you to make changes without penalty so long as those changes occurred at least 24 hours before your hotel stay.

Hyatt’s new cancellation policy

Well, now Hyatt has jumped on board and effective January 1, 2018, Hyatt customers (without certain levels of status) will have to make changes at least 48 hours before the hotel stay when booking flexible rates. If you have Explorist or Globalist status, however, you can still make changes up to 24 hours before your stay.

Hyatt released the following statement regarding the changes:

Effective for reservations made or changed on or after January 1, 2018, Hyatt will implement a revised minimum cancellation policy that allows hotels to manage guestroom availability more effectively, including offering rooms and upgrades to rooms that would have otherwise gone unoccupied.

This new default cancellation policy requires guests to cancel their reservations at least 48 hours in advance to avoid a cancellation fee. Because each Hyatt hotel may continue to set its own cancellation policy based on local market dynamics and expectations, we always encourage guests to check the cancellation policy at the time of booking. It will continue to be transparently communicated at the time of booking and in guest emails.

While this change is designed to improve room availability, we recognize that flexibility is important and will offer relaxed criteria for our most frequent guests. Beginning with reservations made or changed on January 1, 2018, World of Hyatt Explorist, Globalist or Lifetime Globalist members will be able to cancel up to 24 hours before arrival when the hotel’s cancellation policy is 48 hours. This relaxed criteria will apply to all hotels excluding Hyatt Residence Club resorts, Miraval resorts and M life resort destinations and excludes pre-paid and non-refundable rates. It will also not apply when a hotel’s cancellation policy exceeds 48 hours.

I’m not in favor of these changes but I do think it’s become inevitable with hotel chains trying to tighten up on policies like these. I still believe that anybody can easily get around these changes be rescheduling their stay into the future and then cancelling them later so I don’t view these policy changes as a major loss. But keep in mind that individual properties can have their own cancellation policies so during certain seasons and times of the year, you might be subject to even stricter cancellation policies.