Whine Wednesdays: Nepal Earthquakes Points To Cash Donations – Case Hyatt Gold Passport

Whenever there is a natural disaster, many companies start sending out emails asking for members to donate points that these programs then convert to cash (at terrible rate) and donate to charity.

Whine Wednesdays Hyatt Nepal

This makes very little sense to the member due to the horrible conversion rate that the program uses. Hyatt is currently selling points at 1.71 cents each with up to 40% bonus (read more here) yet they are only willing to give 0.5 cents (71% less than what they collect when selling them) to the charity.

This only makes sense if you have small number of points expiring on a program that you no longer use and they would otherwise just expire.

Here’s copy of the email that Hyatt sent out:

Whine Wednesdays Hyatt Nepal Email

Conclusion

I would just wish that programs would be more generous when converting points to charity donations. In the case of Hyatt Gold Passport, this is a great way for the program to lower the outstanding value of points by converting them to donations at terrible ratio + getting free publicity along the way.

To be fair, the book value of the Gold Passport point that Hyatt keeps on its books is likely even less than the 0.5 cents each. Not sure if they get tax benefit from these points to cash donations.

Personally, I made a 270 SGD ($200) donation to the UNICEF on a recent Cathay Pacific flight when they announced that the proceed would go towards the Nepal disaster. Would you rather give $200 or 40,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points?

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