Among a spate of updates that Hyatt announced for an upcoming Hyatt Place brand overhaul, there was news last week that the properties soon would start offering a new free breakfast benefit to business travelers. And while true, there was a catch: Free breakfast would be limited to World of Hyatt loyalty program members who book direct.

It’s only a small hoop to jump through — any person off the street can join World of Hyatt in the time it takes to ride down an elevator — but there’s significant meaning behind the restriction. In forcing guests to join its loyalty program, Hyatt is effectively getting users into its system, collecting data on their habits, and opening a marketing and loyalty relationship with each person.

Moves like this have already happened in the in-room Wi-Fi space. InterContinental Hotels Group, Marriott, and a handful of other brands all offer free connectivity for loyalty members while other perks like local attraction discounts and free Kindle books are also on offer. Put another way, small perks that could really be for free are now being used to purchase your loyalty.

Indeed, there is no such thing as a free lunch.

For feedback or news tips, reach out via email at gm@skift.com or tweet me @grantkmartin.

— Grant Martin, Business of Loyalty Editor

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Where Does Air France-KLM Go From Here? Until Air France-KLM implements a long-term cohesive strategy, it probably will keep falling behind its main competitors.

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Skift Business of Loyalty Editor Grant Martin [gm@skift.com] curates the Skift Business of Loyalty newsletter. Skift emails the newsletter every Monday.

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Photo Credit: A Hyatt Place hotel outside of New York City. Hyatt's new breakfast policy at its Hyatt Place chain requires guests to join the loyalty program. Hyatt / Hyatt Place