In the previous post I explained our recent round of credit card apps and why we chose those particular cards. The main purpose of our choice was to end up with 4 free nights at any Hyatt property and 2 free weekend nights at any Hilton property.
Finding Hilton and Hyatt luxury resorts nearby one another is pretty easy. But with 6 free nights between the two, I want to get a good bang for the buck (or absence of bucks, as it were). Two of the locations that show up in every list of where to use these certificates are Hawaii and the Maldives. Both Hyatt and Hilton have amazing properties on both island chains. The Maldives is home to the Park Hyatt Hadahaa and the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island, both of which are ridiculously awesome.
However, although stays at ridiculously awesome resorts can be free, they come with another kind of price: travel time. The Maldives is almost as far from Minnesota as you can get on this planet. The average travel time to Male is 32 hours, plus the required seaplane flight to the resorts themselves. The jet lag from that kind of flight time would severely reduce the enjoyment of the trip, so a night or two at a stop-over city like Hong Kong would be necessary. With five kids, a dog, and two full time jobs it’s hard to get away for any amount of time, so this trip will probably have to stay on the ValueTactics bucket list for a while.
So we’re not willing to make the Maldives work just yet. What does that leave us with? A whole lot. Remember, these free night certificates are good for any Hilton and Hyatt properties so we have a few thousand to choose from. Well, not really thousands since we’re not going to waste the certificates on the local Hampton Inn!
There’s another redemption opportunity including two resorts, one Hyatt and one Hilton, which are close to each other and which are both highly regarded properties in their respective luxury brands. I’m talking about Hilton’s Waldorf Astoria Grand Wailea and Hyatt’s Andaz at Wailea. The rate for a standard room during peak season at the Grand Wailea runs $654/night + a $30 per day resort fee. The Andaz runs $589/night + a $40 per day resort fee during peak season. Resort fees are included when redeeming free night certificates so if we booked our 6 night vacation for late March we’d be getting a $3884 value for FREE! (Or, for $95 if you want to count the Hilton Reserve’s $95 up-front annual fee.)
It’s hard to fathom that resorts like these are within our reach simply for signing up for a couple credit cards. But that’s the beauty of being informed, and acting tactically! You too can benefit from these and other credit card sign-up bonuses by staying informed: like ValueTactics on facebook and follow us on twitter. We’ll see you in Hawaii next year! 🙂