An overview of Hilton Honors elite benefits with tips on how to gain status faster.
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While you may be checking out the Hilton Honors program for its potential to earn free room nights, the Hilton Honors program’s elite status benefits are another compelling reason to become a Hilton Honors member.
Hilton offers some of the most valuable hotel perks of any hotel rewards program, especially for members with lower tiers of status. And gaining elite status with the Hilton Honors program is extremely easy: All you have to do is register for its no-annual-fee Hilton Honors American Express Card and you’re automatically elevated to Silver status, which qualifies you for very valuable benefits, including a free fifth night on any rewards stay, a 20-percent increase on your base-earning rate and a faster track to Gold status.
There are a variety of routes to gaining elite status with Hilton, and your status is good through the end of the next calendar year.
A great card for Hilton aficionados
|Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card|
Why should you get it?
The card offers tons of value thanks to its 125,000-point introductory bonus, a high earning rate on Hilton hotel purchases and a free weekend night each year you spend $15,000. Also, it grants you automatic Gold status with valuable perks, including free room upgrades and a free 5th night on every rewards stay.
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Here’s an overview of the tiers for you:
Hilton elite status tiers
|How to qualify||How to qualify||How to qualify||How to qualify|
Is Hilton elite status worth it?
Almost certainly, yes. If you are a frequent guest of Hilton hotels, you can find genuine value in benefits such as late checkout, higher base point earnings and free room upgrades. Here’s a summary of the more valuable perks:
- Fifth night free – If you have Silver status or higher in the Hilton Honors program, you qualify for a fifth night free on any rewards stay. The fifth night free benefit is an extremely valuable one. Basically, it can save you between 5,000 to 95,000 points on an awards stay.
- Higher earnings on base points – Depending on your status level, you get a 20- to 100-percent boost on your base point earning rate, which means a faster route to a rewards night (and the next status level).
- Spare the resort fees – To the surprise of some of its guests, Hilton may charge daily resort fees, which can add a hundred dollars or more to the final bill. Fortunately, Hilton waives resort fees for all Honors members, starting at the lowest tier.
- Unlimited milestone bonuses – New to Hilton Honors program in 2018, Hilton Honors offers unlimited milestone bonuses to its Gold and Diamond members. Members earn 10,000 bonus points for every 10 nights over their first 40 nights in a year, and a 30,000-point bonus once they hit 60 nights in a year.
- Room upgrades – Hilton guarantees free upgrades to its Gold and Diamond members (at select brands) as long as space is available.
- Complimentary breakfast – Gold and Diamond members are guaranteed a free breakfast at all Hilton brands.
- Executive lounge access – Diamond members get exclusive access to Hilton executive lounges, where they may get a variety of free amenities, such as breakfast, snacks and drinks.
- 48-hour room guarantee – Hilton guarantees room availability up to 48 hours in advance for its Diamond members.
Fast tracks to Hilton elite status
If racking up the rewards nights, stays or hotel nights seems too time-consuming, you have several options for getting to elite status faster. Here are some tried-and-true methods:
Get a Hilton credit card
Signing up for a Hilton credit card is a great way to get the fast track into good hotel perks. Hilton offers four credit cards, all of which grant you automatic elite status, including its no-annual-fee card:
- Hilton Honors card ($0 annual fee) – Automatic Silver status
- Hilton Honors Surpass card ($95 annual fee) – Automatic Gold status and an upgrade to Diamond status each year you spend $40,000
- Hilton Honors Business card ($95 annual fee) – Automatic Gold status and an upgrade to Diamond status each year you spend $40,000
- Hilton Aspire card ($450 annual fee) – Automatic Diamond status
Get Silver status through your employer
Employees of large companies, such as Microsoft or IBM, may qualify for instant elite status through Hilton, plus a fast track to Gold and Diamond status. (in addition to other special offers). When you register for the Hilton Honors program, try using your work email address to see if you qualify. Hilton also provides customized landing pages for some companies – you can try a web search to see if they offer one for your employer.
Get the gift of elite status
Gold and Diamond members can gift their status to a friend or family member. Gold members who accumulate at least 60 nights in a year can gift Gold status to another person, and – if they accumulate 120 nights in a year – can extend Diamond status to that same person. You may want to hit up a friend or relative to see if you can ride on the coattails of their status.
Get a status match
Hilton is currently offering a status match to members of other hotel loyalty programs. Hilton guarantees to match your status with any loyalty program for your first 90 days of membership, with the possibility of extending your status until March.