I'm living in a Hyatt hotel

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✈️ JetBlue is holding a last-minute flash sale that ends today! Use promo code FALL2024 to save 25% on flights between September 7th and November 20th. Again, this is only valid if you book flights directly with JetBlue today! Go, go, go!

Good morning, folks. Welcome back to Daily Drop, the one-stop-shop for all things travel. We’re like Costco… but even cheaper. 😉

Here’s what I’ve got for you today:

🏨 I’m living in a Hyatt hotel (without points)

Alright… this is a fun one.

A few weeks ago, I told you about a hotel I was staying at here in Indonesia. It was a Hyatt hotel.

I also made a joke:

Snapshot of an old Daily Drop newsletter

You see, at a price of just $44-65 per night, this hotel was even cheaper than my rent in Toronto.

But then I got to thinking…

What if I actually lived in a Hyatt hotel? What would the cost look like? How could I make it cheaper than my rent? How much value would I get?

So here’s the story of how and why I’m living in a 5-star, luxury Hyatt hotel for one and a half months… and how it’s saving me money.

A house graphic with a boy and cat inside

First, let me tell you about my rent in Toronto.

Between my apartment, utilities, internet, insurance, local gym membership, and other costs, I shell out $2,174 Canadian dollars per month (welcome to life in North America’s most expensive city, folks), or $1,594 USD.

That’s the monthly cost that, having given up my apartment, I have to play with every month for living expenses.

The hotel in question, the Alila Solo, is freaking AMAZING.

Suite at the Alila Solo

The cost is also amazing. 😏

When I ran a search on Hyatt’s website for the dates I wanted, I saw a monthly cost of just over one million rupiah per night.

Alila Solo

This month-long stay would cost ~$1,950, which is not a bad price, considering:

  • I get free breakfast as a Globalist

  • I get lounge access with free lunch, dinner, and drinks every day

  • I get gym and spa access

  • I’m earning Hyatt points on the stay

Now, let’s talk about that last point…

As a Hyatt Globalist, I earn 6.5 points per dollar on my stays.

Because I use this credit card to pay for the stay, I earn 3x points on travel purchases, which can be transferred to Hyatt, for a total of 9.5 Hyatt points per dollar.

I’m currently sitting at 63 Hyatt elite nights, too.

That means my long stay will also unlock three more milestone rewards (70, 80, and 90 nights), each earning me 10,000 more Hyatt points.

Hyatt's 70-night milestone reward

It also means I’ll finish this stay with over 90 nights, just a few away from earning 10,000 more points AND a Category 1-7 Free Night Award.

But let’s get back to the cost…

$1,950 is a pretty good price for a month in a 5-star hotel.

But I’m still a stingy piece of crap, so I wanted to do better. 😏

So, I asked the front desk if they could have the manager of the hotel text me on WhatsApp.

She did, and I sent her the following message:

Selamat pagi, mbak! I love your hotel so much, and love the city of Solo. I’m thinking about booking a long-term stay for around 30 nights and am wondering if you might offer me a special long-term rate as a Hyatt Globalist. Terima kasih banyak!

She was happy to receive my message (and got a kick out of my minimal use of Indonesian) and responded with the following:

Sure, bud.

It wasn’t quite like that… but she did send me a long message that resulted in a special offer for a nightly rate of ~$56, or ~$1,680 for the month.

I accepted, of course.

So, for $86 more than my Toronto rent, here’s what I’m getting:

  • $1,680 x 9.5 points per dollar = 15,960 Hyatt points

  • Three milestone rewards = 30,000 Hyatt points

  • Free breakfast, lunch, dinner, and drinks

  • Gym membership and spa access

  • They also threw in free laundry every day 😎

Let’s say breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a cold beer are worth $20 per day (which is comical compared to the cost of food in Canada).

This alone is “worth” ~$600 per month.

Traveling with just a backpack, I have to do a lot of laundry… As you can imagine, I can’t fit many clothes in my bag…

Mike's Travel Backpack

This is everything I own right now, all in my 21-liter bag

So, let’s say this perk is worth ~$30 per month (though it’d cost much more than that if I used the hotel’s laundry service).

Let’s say Hyatt points are worth $0.02 each (I generally get two and a half to three cents, but let’s keep it conservative).

The points I’m earning (45,960 total) are worth $919 in this case.

Ultimately, my $1,680 purchase is yielding $1,549 of value… and it also puts me very close to another important Hyatt milestone (Category 1-7 FNA).

Hyatt's 100-night milestone reward

And best of all, I get to live in complete luxury in one of my favorite places in the world: Solo, Indonesia.

I get to keep meeting new friends, exploring the markets, hiking around the volcanos, learning Indonesian, and having a unique and super special travel experience in a stunning part of the world…

A photo of Central Java Island

So here are the takeaways:

You can get creative with your hotel stays. If you have a unique situation, talk to a manager - they can do literally whatever they want.

If you are a student, teacher, seasonal worker, or remote worker and have the ability to get away for a month, consider doing slow travel in this way.

You can get to know a place, save money, get outsize value, earn a ton of points, and still achieve your loyalty goals - all without breaking the bank.

What’s the longest hotel stay you’ve ever had?

I'm curious to see these responses...

Only Email Recipients can participate in polls.

🌎 Where in the World Wednesday

Oh hey, FareDrop. Welcome back to the chat. Seriously, long time no see.

It’s been a hot minute since we’ve featured a FareDrop deal… So today, we’re finally headed to Zurich, Switzerland, for just $425 🤯

Deal card to Zurich, Switzerland

But before we highlight a few fun suggestions of what to do when you’re there, I wanted to point out a super cool new feature that comes with each FareDrop.

You now have the ability to share each deal with friends, family, pets, and strangers… Basically anywhere that you can drop a link, you can share a deal 👇

Screenshot showing FareDrop sharing feature

But what if that pet, family member, or stranger doesn’t have a FareDrop account? No problem!

They’ll be prompted to sign up and can opt in for a free account or upgrade for a paid plan.

But now that we all know how to share, let’s do a quick rundown of what you should do in this very pretty city.

A couple of my personal favorite things to do in Zurich include taking the ferry around Lake Zurich.

Courtesy of yours truly.

You’re at the base of the Alps, so yeah, the views are stunning.

Plus, the very BEST stop on that ferry ride is the stop that takes you to the largest Lindt Chocolate factory and store in Switzerland.

Trust me, get off on that stop. Just do it. The smell of chocolate will lead you right to the factory’s front door 🤤

And if you haven’t indulged enough, I would highly recommend trying some raclette—a traditional Swiss dish where they scrape heaps of melted cheese onto your plate……

Need I say more.

And if you’ve only got a few days in the city, don’t skip hiking to Uetliberg—Zurich’s very own mountain—for incredible views of the city and onward.

So if you’d like to get personalized alerts for cheap flights to destinations all over the world, sign up for FareDrop today!

We promise, you won’t regret it 🙃

Did you know you can book a night in a 900-year-old castle with points? How about a luxury yacht? Yep, you can book that, too.

In this week’s Daily Drop YouTube video, Brendan showcases some of the ways to use points from popular loyalty programs to book super unique properties around the world.

Check it out. 👇

That’s all for today, my friends! I hope you enjoyed some of the more unique travel tips from today’s newsletter.

It just goes to show that there are endless possibilities for earning and redeeming points and miles when thinking outside the box! 😊

Take care and see you tomorrow,

Mike Dodge
Head Writer, Daily Drop

7.5695° S, 110.8250° E

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