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A bit over a week ago I wrote a post entitled “Giving Credit To Hilton HHonors Where It’s Due.” The premise of the post was that even though I think Hilton HHonors elite benefits are somewhat subpar, and even though I don’t like Hilton’s portfolio of hotels as much as some other brands, the number of points they offer for hotel stays is industry leading.
For example, at the moment:
- Hilton is offering triple base HHonors points for all stays booked through the Hilton app through December 31, 2016
- Hilton is offering 5,000 bonus HHonors points per stay when you book through the Hilton app and pay with a visa through January 31, 2016
Members ordinarily earn 10 base points per dollar spent, plus an additional five points if they choose Points & Points as their earnings preference (which most people should be doing). When you factor in the triple base points and 5,000 bonus points, that means you’re earning 35 Hilton points per dollar spent, plus 5,000 bonus points per stay.
Then if you’re a Diamond member you earn an additional five points per dollar, and if you’re paying with a card like the Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card, you’re earning an additional 10 points per dollar.
That means I’m earning a total of 50 HHonors points per dollar spent, plus 5,000 bonus points per stay.
Qualifying for promotions on award stays
One thing I wasn’t aware of is that these promotions even work on award stays, assuming you put any incidental spend on the folio. In other words, if you book an award stay through the app and put some spend on your folio that’s paid for with a Visa, you’d receive 5,000 bonus points per stay.
The one catch is that this won’t work at Hampton, Home2 Suites, and Homewood Suites, because incidental charges aren’t eligible for points accrual at those properties.
What this means in practice
On the most basic level, this means you could get a 5,000 point discount off the cost of a normal “free night” stay. For example, the DoubleTree Kuala Lumpur costs 10,000 points per night, and you could get a 5,000 point discount by putting anything on your folio while staying at the hotel.
If you live in Egypt or Turkey, this could even be an opportunity to earn Diamond for next to nothing. For example, take the Hilton Sharm Dreams Resort in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, where a free night redemption costs 5,000 points. Assuming you charged anything to your folio and stayed for one night, your stay would basically be free.
You could do that over and over until you earned Diamond status, theoretically.
I’m not saying I’d recommend doing that, but rather that it’s interesting to see how far this promotion can be taken.
While I won’t be moving to Egypt or Turkey to take advantage of this promotion, being able to earn 5,000 bonus points even on award stays may shift which hotels I stay at, and cause me to book Hiltons for one night stays.
Does being able to earn 5,000 points back on Hilton award stays change how you’ll redeem your HHonors points?
(Tip of the hat to InsideFlyer)