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Last chance: Gift free Hilton elite status to your family or friends for a limited time

Jan. 28, 2021
5 min read
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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with the latest information.

Hilton Honors allows anyone who spends 60 or more nights with the chain in a calendar year to gift elite status to another Honors member. However, Hilton has expanded this benefit to all of its highest elites for a limited time, regardless of how you earned your status. But you'll have to act fast.

Through Jan. 31, 2021, Hilton Diamond and Lifetime Diamond members can gift elite status for one year to a family member or friend. Diamond members can gift mid-tier Gold status, while Lifetime Diamond members can gift top-tier Diamond status.

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Gifting Hilton Honors elite status

In December, Hilton Honors is surprised its Diamond members with a special gift. Through Jan. 31, 2021, Hilton allows Diamond members to gift Hilton Honors Gold to a person of their choosing and Lifetime Diamond members to gift Diamond status.

This limited-time perk is available to all Diamond members, regardless of how many nights you completed this year. So, you'll still be able to take advantage of this even if you got your status for free as a Hilton credit cardholder, which is quite generous. Also, this promotion is in addition to Hilton's usual elite status gifting program. Members who completed 60 or 100 qualifying nights this year can still gift Gold or Diamond status to another individual, respectively.

(Photo courtesy of Hilton Honors)

Instructions on how to redeem this gift have been sent via email. Recipients will need to head to this link to redeem their gifted Gold status or this link for Diamond status and then enter their custom claim code.

If you have not received the status gift email, it could be because you have opted out of Hilton marketing emails. In that case, you can request your personalized gift code by calling Hilton or emailing priorityletter@hilton.com.

Gifted status is good for 365 days from the gift date — it doesn’t follow the program year. Once the status has been gifted, you can’t make any changes to the recipient, so choose wisely.

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Related: Your guide to Hilton Honors lifetime elite status

Hilton Grand Naniola Hawaii (Summer Hull / The Points Guy)

What is Hilton elite status worth?

Assuming you travel enough to get full use from them, Gold and Diamond status are worth $1,255 and $3,025, respectively. However, even if you're not traveling too much these days, you can still get decent value from them.

Mid-tier Gold status is typically earned after 20 stays or 40 nights or by earning 75,000 base points in a calendar year (which equates to $7,500 in spending), but for the 2021 qualification year, Hilton has cut those requirements in half. It's one of the best mid-tier hotel statuses out there, getting you perks like an 80% points bonus, a fifth night free on award stays, space-available upgrades, late check-out and even free breakfast.

Top-tier Diamond status requires 30 stays or 60 nights or 120,000 base points ($12,000 in spending) — or half of that in 2021. It takes things up a notch by offering suite-upgrades, guaranteed lounge access and a 100% points bonus.

Related: All of the elite qualification changes you need to know about for 2021

Hilton Gold and Diamond members get complimentary breakfast. (Photo by Katie Genter / The Points Guy)

That being said, it's important to remember that there are other ways to fast-track Hilton elite status as well. The Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card and The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card come with Gold status and the ability to upgrade to Diamond status by spending $40,000 in eligible purchases in a calendar year. Meanwhile, the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card offers automatic Diamond status. You can also unlock complimentary Hilton Gold status with The Platinum Card® from American Express.

The information for the Hilton Aspire card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Related: Why Hilton should add a new elite tier above Diamond

Bottom line

Hilton Honors has done a great job keeping its members engaged throughout the pandemic, and this new benefit for Diamond members is just the cherry on top. Moves like being the first hotel chain to extend elite status and then significantly reducing qualification criteria for 2021 helped Hilton win the Best Hotel Loyalty Program title in this year's TPG Awards. However, time will tell whether making status so attainable will ultimately devalue the program.

Featured image by (Photo by Benji Stawski/The Points Guy)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
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  • 4 points per dollar at restaurants worldwide, U.S. gas stations, wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. shipping
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  • Receive 15 elite night credits to jump-start status
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Cons

  • Airline points transfer ratios are poor
  • Must spend $60,000 in a year for second free-night award
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 125,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 5/3/23.
  • Receive a 7% discount off standard rates for reservations of standard guest rooms at hotels that participate in the Marriott Bonvoy program when you book directly. Terms and Conditions Apply.
  • 6x Marriott Bonvoy Points on each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
  • 4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
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  • Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy® points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
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TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
3 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

6X6x Marriott Bonvoy Points on each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
4X4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
2X2x points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Intro Offer
    Limited Time Offer: Earn 125,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 5/3/23.

    Earn 125,000 points
    75,000 points
  • Annual Fee

    $125
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

The Marriott Bonvoy Business Amex is a stacked card with a rewards rate that will help you earn bonus points on everyday and business-related purchases. You'll earn 15 elite night credits each calendar year, and receive automatic Gold elite status. Finally, the free night award certificate with a redemption level of 35,000 points or less can get you hundreds of dollars in potential value each year.

Pros

  • 6 points per dollar on eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program
  • 4 points per dollar at restaurants worldwide, U.S. gas stations, wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. shipping
  • 2 points per dollar on all other eligible purchases
  • Earn a free-night award each card renewal month (up to 35,000 points)
  • Receive 15 elite night credits to jump-start status
  • Transfer Marriott points to 40+ airlines

Cons

  • Airline points transfer ratios are poor
  • Must spend $60,000 in a year for second free-night award
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 125,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 5/3/23.
  • Receive a 7% discount off standard rates for reservations of standard guest rooms at hotels that participate in the Marriott Bonvoy program when you book directly. Terms and Conditions Apply.
  • 6x Marriott Bonvoy Points on each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
  • 4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
  • 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy® points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Enjoy Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite Status with your Card.
  • Terms apply.