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American Express is offering 4,000 bonus Hilton Honors points when you spend $400 or more in a single transaction directly at hotels and resorts in the Hilton portfolio, and pay using your co-branded Amex Hilton card. The bonus is offered for transactions through February 28, 2015. No registration is necessary; qualifying transactions will earn the bonus points automatically.
The bonus points can be earned with the Hilton Honors American Express and Hilton Honors Surpass American Express cards. While the offer is limited to a one-time bonus per card account, you could theoretically earn the bonus twice if you have both cards. Purchases made by additional cardholders qualify for the bonus, but only primary cardholders are eligible to actually receive the extra points. The offer is not valid for stays paid for before or after the promotion start and end dates. Points will be credited to your account 10-12 weeks after a qualifying purchase posts to your card account.
In my latest monthly valuations of points and miles, I list Hilton Honors points at 0.5 cents apiece, so 4,000 points is worth about $20, or a discount of 5%. That’s not enough of an incentive to make spending the money worthwhile if you weren’t already planning to do so, especially considering that the transaction must be processed directly with a Hilton hotel or resort. That omits the possibility of booking through an online travel agency or other third party, which could save you much more than 5% overall.
Still, there are a few circumstances where I think pursuing this bonus is worthwhile:
- If you already have a qualifying paid stay planned during the offer period, and can use one of the co-branded Amex cards to cover your bill, then this is a no-brainer.
- If you have a paid stay planned beyond the offer period that you can pay for in advance, and if the value of the bonus points and elite credits you earn by paying directly outweighs any savings you might garner by booking through a third party, then again you may as well use your co-branded card and take advantage of the offer.
- If you frequently stay at Hilton, but have no stays planned, you may be able to earn the bonus by buying Hilton gift cards at a local property. So long as the transaction meets the offer requirements, you should still get the 4,000 Honors points and be able to redeem the gift cards down the road.
For more info on the co-branded Hilton Amex cards, check out Nick Ewen’s detailed post from July about all the co-branded Hilton Honors credit card options.