Reminder: Book Now Before Hilton Devaluation March 28

by on March 26, 2013 · 19 comments

in Hilton

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What with all the major hotel points devaluations about to go into effect – including those of Marriott, Priority Club and Starwood’s Cash & Points option – by far the most devastating is the way that Hilton will gut its HHonors program come this Thursday, March 28, 2013. That’s why I wanted to post a reminder to all your HHonors members out there who are considering your points for award stays in the foreseeable future to make your bookings by tomorrow, March 27, in order to get the most value out of your points while that’s still possible as well as to take advantage of current AXON and GLON rates if you’re a Hilton Amex cardholder or HHonors elite since GLON rates are being replaced with a fifth free night and AXON redemptions will probably change in unspecified ways. You can find what new standard redemption rates will be using this Hilton search tool.

If you want to stay at the Hilton Moorea affordably, better make your reservation now!

If you want to stay at the Hilton Moorea affordably, better make your reservation now!

Many of you have written to me asking whether the new changes have gone into effect already for bookings beyond March 28 because of unusually high-priced awards in the near future, but I’m relieved to report that’s not the case. You are probably getting higher-priced rates because there are only premium room rewards available close in (or even several months out if it’s a popular property).

I did a quick search to verify that current rates are still available, and the good news is, they are, though as readers have pointed out, they are getting scarce at certain popular properties.

One that a few people asked about is the Hilton Moorea in Tahiti. Though award rates for the next several months are astronomical, unfortunately, this has to do with availability rather than award rates. However, way out in October 2013, I found plenty of award availability at 50,000 points per night – the current redemption level of this Category 7 property. Remember, if you can take advantage of AXON or GLON awards, your rate could be as low as 36,250 points per night.

It's far out, but if you can, book your 50,000-point nights at the Hilton Moorea in Tahiti now while you still can!

It’s far out, but if you can, book your 50,000-point nights at the Hilton Moorea in Tahiti now while you still can!

If you make your reservation March 28 or after, though, you’re looking at standard room redemptions going up to a cool 80,000 points per night, and if you’re an elite, even with the fifth night free, your rate is 64,000 points per night. That’s a 60% increase on standard awards and 77% increase over GLON/elite rates.

After the devaluation, a night here will cost you 80,000 points.

After the devaluation, a night here will cost you 80,000 points.

Another property that I’m thinking about taking advantage of myself is the current Category 7 Conrad Maldives. Right now, award nights start at 50,000 points per night and there’s good availability even as close in as a few weeks from now in mid-April.

Conrad Maldives April 20-23

The Conrad Maldives has good availability at current rates in the coming months.

After the devaluation, however, that rate skyrockets to a jaw-dropping 95,000 points per night. That’s a 90% premium!

Conrad Maldives 95k

A jump from 50,000 to 95,000 points? Unbelievable!

With a GLON award now (I’m a Hilton Diamond thanks to spending on my Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card), I’d be spending 200,000 points on a five-night stay. After the devaluation, I’d need to spend 380,000 points for the same five nights. No thank you.

When the devaluation announcement was released, I came up with a fun list of top properties to burn your HHonors points on redemptions before the changeover, but what are your suggestions and what redemptions have you, or do you plan to, make before the devaluation?

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • DaVe

    With my wife’s points we booked 6 nights at the Conrad Punta del Este for next February. Six nights came to 30,000 points per night for a room that is $500/night in the high-season. With my points, I booked a 4 night AXON award at the Hilton Whistler and am using 2 Citi weekend certificates to get in a 6 night ski trip. Hopefully we can make all these trips!

  • VHflyer

    I’m debating using the points for either Conrad Dublin or one of the hotels in London… Any suggestions on which would be the best use of the Hilton points? Also considering somewhere in Munich or Vienna.

  • Jim R

    Lots of Waldorf properties like Grand Wailea Maui are lowering redemption rates after Mar 28. Rome Cavalieri only increasing by 10k/night & all inclusive Hilton properties redeem at same rates even after Mar 28.

  • Land of $10 buffets

    Lower award rates Cat 4 & less topped by free 5th night
    have me strategizing to sign up for as many Hilton-related
    credit cards with bonuses as possible going forward!

  • reaper99999

    Will it be possible to change/cancel an award reservation later without penalties (I am aware if I need to rebook then it will be at the new rate)?

  • Jacki Dunne

    Thanks for the reminder, was able to book 4 night VIP award in Amsterdam and book 2 nights at London Paddington at Cat 6 old rate for April 2014. You saved me a lot of points. Thank you.

  • thisistheend

    Is there any way to get Amex/Hilton to advance/expedite points posting to my account?

    My Amex Hilton statement closed yesterday, 3/25 but the statement has not yet generated. Usually it take ~2 days from statement close for points to post to my hilton account. Would be really frustrating to miss the deadline by 1 day. I need to book 2 more stays with those points.

  • dee seiffer

    Booked 4 nights in Dublin this September. And got both Hubby’s and my flights from BOS to DUB for 50,000 Avios. Thanks for the reminder!

  • hiltondeval

    What happens if I book and then cannot make the trips? Is there a $ penalty and/or do I lose the points? Thanks for your help.

  • bookinadvance

    Can you only book one year in advance? TPG i thought you had posted somewhere that you saw availability out in 2015? The award calendar as well as the Hhonors rep told me that I can only book one year out in advance. Thanks for your help.

  • Ben

    How do you book a room beyond 364 days? Please help each time I call they
    Limit me to March 2014.

  • Afkabp

    Only had 100k so I picked up a couple nights on The Big Island next March. Not sure I’ll go, but would hate to spend 90k/night if I do.

  • jmw2323

    nice to see hilton los cabos resort is staying at 40k. just booked a GLON award for next spring break 30k/nt. now i have to wait for flight awards to become available next month.
    marriott allows me to book flights first as redemptions don’t go up til end of may.
    will just stick with wherever i can redeem flights

  • Ken

    I’m also looking for confirmation that there’s no cancellation penalties outside of the normal 24 hrs (or whatever the individual hotel’s policy is). Can someone confirm?

  • thepointsguy

    Depends on the hotel so confirm before checkout. Most are 1-3 days but I just books Conrad Maldives and it is 30!

  • Dan

    Conrad Koh Samui has a 14 day cancellation policy.

  • Robert

    ..and we just got Hilton Garden Inn Rome Claridge for 3 nights in July.

  • ocscorpio

    I booked the Hilton Times Square for Thanksgiving and it’s 90 days LOL.

  • Mark_in_VA

    Incredible. I booked ahead of the change because I knew the GLON was going away, and it turned out that the time period for my booking hit the “discount” period for the new category and, if I had waited, it would have been 30K points less!

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