Hilton Honors Surpass Card Bonus Hits 75,000 Points

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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Hilton Honors Surpass Card from American Express, Hilton Honors Card from American Express, Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card

With last year’s launch of the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card, American Express – which offers the Hilton Amex and the Hilton Surpass card – was forced to rethink its Hilton co-branded credit card strategy.

First Amex revamped the bonus spending categories so that the card now earns the following:

  • 12 points per $1 at Hilton Worldwide properties
  • 6 points per $1 at U. S. restaurants, gas stations and supermarkets
  • 3 points for all other eligible purchases
Then it added Gold status as a permanent cardholder benefit (like the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card) rather than just the first year with Silver status in subsequent years unless cardholders spent $20,000. That wasn’t a huge game changer since Hilton had also announced a promotion on November 4 offering cardholders of the American Express Platinum card, the Business Platinum card and the Mercedes-Benz Platinum card an instant upgrade to Hilton Honors Gold status when they call customer service now through December 31, 2013, with that status should be good through 2014, but it was still a very positive step for the card.

While the sign-up bonus on the Surpass card is usually just 60,000 points (40,000 with first purchase and 20,000 when you spend $3,000 in 3 months), Amex is offering a limited-time higher sign-up bonus of 75,000 points when you spend $3,000 in 3 months – you can apply now through February 28, 2014. So, if you’ve been thinking about this card, now is the time to get it while the bonus is this high and the benefits have improved dramatically, just keep in mind the $75 annual fee is not waived.

However, if you do not already have a Hilton card and are trying to decide between this one and the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve, I’d still go with the Citi one for a few reasons, despite its slightly higher annual fee of $95. Yes, the bonus spending categories aren’t quite as high, with just 10X points per $1 at Hilton and 5X points per $1 on airline and car rentals instead of the Surpass’s 6X on restaurants, gas stations and supermarkets, the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card comes with a potentially very valuable sign-up bonus of 2 free weekend night certificates when you spend $2,500 in 4 months. That alone can be worth thousands of dollars – as I found out by redeeming mine for part of my recent stay at the Conrad Maldives (review to come) where a night in a King Deluxe Beach Villa would have cost me $1,400 a night or 95,000 Honors points- so the Surpass sign-up wouldn’t have even gotten me one free night!

Not only that, but when you spend $10,000 in a membership year on the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve, you get an additional free weekend night certificate bringing your total potential in the first year to three free nights. By contrast with the Surpass’s current bonus, you’d only get 1 night in a Category 10 hotel at 70,000 points…in low season…if you’re lucky. While AXON reduced-level awards used to be a selling point on the Hilton Amex products, those were also devalued in June, as well as the fact that Hilton offers elites (which you automatically have with any of the Hilton credit cards) a fifth night free on award stays that’s often a better value.

For bigger spenders, both the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve and Amex Surpass cards offer Diamond status when you spend $40,000 in a calendar year.

That said, if you already have the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card and are looking for another Hilton points payday to top up your account, this could be a decent bonus offer for you to get in on.

For more information on Hilton Honors and its co-branded credit cards, check out these posts:

Hilton HHonors Surpass Amex Cardholders Receive Automatic Gold Status

Instant Hilton HHonors Gold Status For American Express Platinum Cardholders

Hilton American Express Cards Bonus Spending Category Changes Go Into Effect

Details on the New Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card

Choosing the Right Hilton Credit Card

Hilton HHonors Offers Elites Expedited 2015 Requalification

Another Hilton Devaluation HHonors Discontinues Points And Fixed Miles Earning Options

Reminder: Hilton Axon Award Levels Changing Friday June 15

Major Hilton HHonors Devaluation Announced

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN

LIMITED TIME OFFER. Aside from the 100,000 points welcome bonus (available until 8/8/18), Amex recently made huge improvements to the Business Platinum Card, including the fact that you will now earn 50% more points on purchases of $5,000 or more, earn 5x on flights and eligible hotels at Amextravel.com and cardholders will receive a $200 airline fee credit each year.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn up to 100,000 Membership Rewards® Points.
  • Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $10,000 & an extra 50,000 points after you spend an additional $15,000 all on qualifying purchases within your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 8/8/18.†
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com.
  • Get 50% more Membership Rewards® points. That's 1.5 points per dollar, on each eligible purchase of $5,000 or more. You can get up to 1 million additional points per year.
  • 35% Airline Bonus: Use Membership Rewards® Pay with Points for all or part of a flight with your selected qualifying airline, and you can get 35% of the points back, up to 500,000 bonus points per calendar year.
  • You can also receive 35% points back on all First and Business class flights, with all airlines available through American Express Travel.
  • You can enjoy access to The American Express Global Lounge Collection℠ offering access to the most lounges across the globe, when compared with other U.S. credit card offerings. As of 11/2017
  • Terms Apply
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