See how the Hilton Honors Dining program can help you score a free hotel stay just by dining at your favorite restaurants.
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When it comes to earning rewards, many travelers prefer hotel points to frequent flyer points. While frequent flyer programs can be extremely complicated, many hotel programs, such as Hilton Honors, offer award nights in any unsold standard room with none of the blackout dates or capacity controls that can make it so difficult to find airline awards.
If you love collecting hotel points — especially Hilton Honors points — the Hilton Honors Dining program allows you to earn additional points when you eat out in your hometown or when traveling.
What is Hilton Honors Dining?
Once you register a credit card or debit card number through the Hilton Honors Dining website, you will earn bonus points with the program whenever you make a purchase at a participating bar, club or restaurant. You can earn up to eight points per dollar through Hilton Honors Dining, depending on your status, the day of week and any other promotions you qualify for, and the points will stack on top of your credit card rewards. That’s all there is to it — just use a registered card to pay, and your points are automatically deposited to your Hilton Honors account.
How to join Hilton Honors Dining
- Go to the Hilton Honors Dining website and create an account, using your name, address, phone number and email.
- Register the credit or debit cards that you plan to use when you eat out (the more, the better).
- Once your registration is complete, you will earn points the next time you eat out at a participating location (you can even earn points on the spot).
How to use the Hilton Honors Dining program
After you’ve registered, you only have to visit a participating location to start earning points. You can search for restaurants through the Hilton Honors Dining website by city, state, ZIP code or name. You will find other useful details in the search results, including each restaurant’s neighborhood, average price of an entrée, days of weeks on which you can earn rewards (some restaurants don’t offer rewards on the weekend) and member ratings.
Once you’ve swiped a registered card at a participating restaurant, points should be deposited into your Honors account within six to eight weeks of your purchase (you can fill out a missing reward form if your points go missing).
At what rate will you earn Hilton Honors points?
As you can see from the table below, opting in to emails with the Hilton Honors Dining program is key to earning points:
|If you don’t opt in to receive emails||2 points per $2|
|If you opt in to receive emails||5 points per $1|
|If you opt in to receive emails and complete 11 qualified transactions in a calendar year||8 points per $1|
How to maximize the Hilton Honors Dining program
- Opt in to marketing emails. The best way to earn the most reward points from the Hilton Honors Dining program is to receive their marketing emails. If you don’t do this, then you’ll only earn two points for every dollar spent. But, once you’re on the email list, you’ll earn five points per dollar, and you can boost that rate to eight points per dollar once you complete 11 qualifying transactions.
- Use the restaurant search to set your dining schedule. After choosing to receive marketing emails, you should familiarize yourself with the restaurants in your area that are part of the Hilton Honors Dining program. If you set your dinner plans around this list of restaurants, you’ll quickly reach the 11 transactions needed to earn eight points per dollar. Also, look for participating restaurants when you go out to eat with friends and when you take clients out for lunch.
- Look for participating restaurants when you travel. You can turn your vacation or business trip into a chance to earn extra points, while also getting outside your usual list of restaurants.
- Keep an eye out for special promotions. You may be tempted to send your Hilton Honors Dining emails to the spam folder, but it pays to scan these emails for promotions. You may be offered bonuses for reaching a certain threshold in a particular month or by dining out a certain number of times. Also, emails can recommend restaurants near you and notify you when a new restaurant has joined the program.
Hilton Honors Dining sign-up bonus
New Hilton Honors Dining program members can earn 1,000 bonus points in their account’s first 30 days. All you have to do is spend $25 or more at a qualifying location and complete a review within 30 days of dining.
Best credit cards for Hilton Honors Dining
While you can use any Visa, Mastercard, American Express or Discover card with the Hilton Honors Dining program, you should try to use a rewards card that offers bonus points on restaurant purchases — your credit card rewards will stack with your points from the program.
Here are some of the best credit cards to use with Hilton Honors Dining:
|Credit Card||Rewards for dining||Annual fee|
|Hilton Honors Card from American Express||5x points||$0|
|Hilton Honors Ascend Card from American Express||6x points||$95|
|Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express||7x points||$450|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve||3x points||$450|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred||2x points||$95|
|Uber Visa Card from Barclays||4% cash back||$0|
|Capital One Savor Cash Rewards||4% cash back||$95, $0 first year|
|Citi ThankYou Preferred||2x points||$0|
|Citi ThankYou Premier||2x points||$95, $0 first year|
|Citi Prestige||2x points||$450|
|Discover it chrome||2% cash back (on up to $1,000 combined gas and restaurant spending per quarter, then 1%)||$0|
Eligible Hilton Honors Dining restaurants
The list of participating restaurants varies by city — many are independently owned or local chains — so you’ll need to visit the Hilton Honors Dining site to find out which restaurants participate in your area.
Here’s a sampling of participating restaurants:
- Fogo de Chao
- Buca di Beppo
- Jack in the Box
- Which Wich
- BRIO Tuscan Grille
A great card for Hilton aficiandos
|Hilton Honors American Express Ascend 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.
|More things to know:|