Act Quick: Hilton Amex Aspire Cardholders Register for Free SkyTeam Elite Status

Dec 20, 2018

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Team TPG are huge fans of the Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express, and those fortunate enough to already hold one are about to love theirs even more. SkyTeam member airline Aerolineas Argentinas has launched a limited-time status match promotion (note: you may need to try incognito) that allows “customers of the highest levels of airline and hotel chain loyalty programs” to become elite members of its program.

In lay terms, this means that those granted top-tier Diamond status within the Hilton group — a remarkably valuable perk of holding the aforementioned Hilton Amex Aspire — can automatically receive free SkyTeam Elite Plus status, elevating your profile in a major way with global airlines such as Delta, Aeromexico, Air France, KLM, Korean Air and more than a dozen others. This card also won best cobranded hotel credit card at the inaugural TPG Awards, as voted on by TPG readers.

If you hold The Platinum Card® from American Express there’s great news for you as well. With that card comes complimentary Hilton Honors Gold, which can be matched here for SkyTeam Elite status.

Even if you’ve never flown Delta, this status match program will elevate you to SkyTeam Elite Plus

Better still, this particular status match grants you status for a full year, whereas most status challenges require you to travel heavily within a tight window of time to earn it beyond a short trial period. If coming from a mid-tier status, such as Gold, you’ll be granted Aerolíneas Plus Gold; if coming from a top-tier status, you’ll be elevated to Aerolíneas Plus Platinum.

Typically, Aerolíneas Plus Platinum — which is seen as SkyTeam Elite Plus across the network of SkyTeam partner airlines — requires flying 60 segments or 50,000 miles on the carrier. Through Friday, it requires little more than an email. To complete the status match, here’s what you need to do by Friday, Dec. 21, 2018, at 11:59pm Argentina time:

  • Open an Aerolíneas Plus member account if you haven’t already
  • Send an email to
    • In the email, use subject line: Desafío Status Match
    • Make sure the body of the email includes your membership number, full name, email address and a copy of your last statement or membership card which clearly indicates your name and status level within an eligible matching program

You can also match into the Aerolíneas Plus program if you hold elite status with LATAM, Gol, Avianca, Iberia, American, United or British Airways, but going via Hilton Diamond is the path of least resistance.

Here’s a look at what you’ll get as a SkyTeam Elite Plus flyer:

  • Preferred seating
  • Priority check-in counters at airports
  • Priority boarding
  • Access to airport lounges worldwide, whatever the class of travel, for members in possession of a boarding pass, accompanied by a guest
  • Priority baggage handling on arrival, whatever the class of travel
  • Extra baggage allowance

Specifically with Delta, SkyTeam Elite Plus members can also score Sky Club lounge access. SkyTeam Elite Plus members traveling in any cabin on a SkyTeam international flight or a SkyTeam domestic flight connecting to/from a same-day international flight (which includes same-day travel on a Delta domestic flight connecting to an international Delta or SkyTeam partner flight) will receive Sky Club access with up to one guest. If you’re traveling on an international itinerary, you’ll need to show a frequent flyer credential for lounge access.

Granted, SkyTeam Elite Plus benefits are provided only at the departure airport and not the arrival airport unless connecting to a qualifying SkyTeam flight. For the purposes of Sky Club access, international travel includes: Europe, Asia, South America, Central America, Africa, Canada and Mexico. It excludes travel to/from the Caribbean, Guam, Palau and Saipan.

Planespotting while at Delta's Sky Club at Seattle (Photo by Darren Murph / The Points Guy)
Planespotting while at Delta’s Sky Club at Seattle.

Be sure to register right away in order to enjoy top-tier airline status on all SkyTeam partners in 2019, and consider what other cobranded credit cards you should apply for in order to secure status in more programs. You never know when status match opportunities such as this will arise, so holding status in advance is crucial. Below are a few of our favorite cards that include complimentary elite status as a perk:

  • IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card (includes complimentary IHG Platinum Elite status)
  • Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express (includes complimentary Hilton Honors Diamond status)
  • The Platinum Card® from American Express (includes complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status as well as Hilton Honors Gold status)

H/T: Doctor of Credit

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