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Yesterday, the post entitled Warning: Read this Before Buying Hyatt Gift Cards, was published here discussing various idiosyncracies or problems that people have encountered using Hyatt Gift Cards.
Hyatt has fabulous customer service – in less than a day, there was an official response from Todd Tomlin, the Manager of Hyatt Gift Cards & Certificates:
As manager of the Hyatt Gift Card program, I appreciate the insight you provide into our program, and how we can improve it. You have covered off on many challenges to the program we are either addressing presently, or have enhancements coming soon to make it a better experience for you, the Hyatt Gift Card holder.
Mr. Tomlin proceeded to address the issues raised in the Warning thread one by one.
WRFM: 1. You have to remember to bring the Gift Card with you…
1. Remembering to bring your Hyatt Gift Card with you. No worries here! We are integrated with a number of mobile wallets including Gyft, GoWallet, Google Wallet, PayPal Wallet and others that allow you to add not only your Hyatt Gift Card, but any other branded gift cards you may have. Just show your Smartphone version of the Hyatt Gift Card to a Hyatt associate, and you’re set!
WRFM: 2. The gift card is only valid at Hyatt hotels in the US, Canada and the Caribbean…
2. (Timing not yet available), we will launch Global acceptance of the Hyatt Gift Card.
WRFM: 3. Using the Hyatt Gift Card is a PITA. It is simply not user-friendly. It is very hard to keep track of the balance… there is no website to check balances.
3. Beginning in a few weeks, you will be able to check the balance of your Hyatt Gift Card at www.hyattgiftcards.com.
WRFM: 4. The Hyatt Gift Card does not automatically swipe. Instead the Hyatt employee has to manually enter the numbers and wait for a confirmation. There are frequent glitches …
4. Agreed here. There are occasions, especially at our Hyatt Place and HYATT house hotels where the Hyatt associate does have to key in the card number. This is due to system limitations, but by the end of 2014, all hotels are expected to be upgraded, allowing for a swipe of the card.
WRFM: 5. Many Hyatt employees have never seen a Hyatt Gift Card and have no idea how to use them…
5. Hyatt Gift Card distribution continues to expand. Starting this month, Hyatt Gift Cards will be available in over 6,000 grocery stores throughout the U.S. The more cards in circulation, the more common it will be for our associates to use them. At the same time though, regardless of the number of cards, our associates should be fully trained on the product, and we will strive to ensure proper training at the hotel level.
WRFM: 6. In many instances, my credit card on file got charged anyway…
6. Credit Card still charged – I don’t like to hear this is happening. It appears you are getting it resolved, but let us know anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need any assistance.
To summarize the key points:
1. Hyatt is integrating Hyatt Gift Cards with a number of mobile wallets including Gyft, GoWallet, Google Wallet, PayPal Wallet.
2. Hyatt is planning to make Hyatt Gift Cards available for use internationally, at some date in the future.
3. You will soon be able to check Hyatt Gift Card balances online.
4. Hyatt continues to upgrade its systems to reduce “glitches” and continues employee training regarding use of Hyatt Gift Cards.
5. Hyatt is expanding distribution of Hyatt Gift Cards to include local retail and grocery stores. (note: if sold at grocery stores, and you purchase the gift cards with a credit card that gives extra points, miles or cash back for grocery store purchases…. )
6. Hyatt listens and responds!
Editorial Note: The opinions expressed here are mine and not provided, reviewed, by any bank, card issuer, or other company unless otherwise stated.