In March Hilton Honors rolled out their latest promotion on purchased points, which is in line with the best promos they offer. This promotion has lasted for quite a while, but this is a reminder, as it’s finally being pulled on Wednesday.
Let me note that most people probably shouldn’t be buying points right now. There’s so much uncertainty, and I’m sure we’ll see all kinds of great offers once this global crisis is over.
However, I still do what I can to keep up to date posts on current promotions, and writing about this promotion is no exception. I know this is a deal a lot of people usually take advantage of, and some will still find it to be worthwhile, given the potential for outsized value.
Buy Hilton Points With 100% Bonus
Through Wednesday, May 27, 2020, Hilton Honors is offering a 100% bonus when members purchase points.
With this promotion you receive a 100% bonus as long as you purchase at least 10,000 points in one transaction, pre-bonus. A 100% bonus is as good as it gets on the purchase of Hilton points, and we see this promotion from Hilton pretty often.
The cost to purchase points with Hilton is ordinarily one cent per point (including tax), meaning that with a 100% bonus you’d pay just 0.5 cents per point.
If you maxed out this promotion you could purchase a total of 320,000 Honors points for $1,600.
Nowadays Hilton lets you combine points across accounts at no cost, so in reality you could buy substantially more points by simply buying them across accounts and then consolidating them. This could also be useful if you find yourself in a situation where a friend or family member is targeted for a bigger bonus than you are.
Hilton Honors points expire after 12 months of inactivity, though any sort of activity resets the expiration of your points.
Should You Buy Hilton Points For 0.5 Cents Each?
A few years ago Hilton radically changed their Honors program. They eliminated their traditional award chart, and rather moved to more variable pricing.
The good news is that there’s still value to be had in the program, and they’ve mostly capped how many points hotels cost. The highest cost for a standard room is 95,000 points per night (note that you’ll see higher pricing at some hotels, but that’s only when standard rooms aren’t available). The two exceptions are the Waldorf Astoria properties in the Maldives and Los Cabos, which cost 120,000 points per night.
Both before and after the changes I value Hilton Honors points at ~0.5 cents each, so this price is right around what I value them. However, there are instances where you can get a lot more value out of Hilton points than that.
For example, a bit over a year ago I stayed at the Conrad Bora Bora and had a spectacular stay. I can’t recommend the hotel enough, and plan on returning.
Points pricing varies throughout the year, though generally the property costs 80,000-85,000 points per night, and if you’re an Honors elite member you get the fifth night free on award redemptions.
So if you’re staying for five nights and get a fifth night free at 85,000 points per night, you’re paying an average of 68,000 Honors points per night. At the cost of 0.5 cents per point, that’s like paying $340 per night here, which is spectacular.
Let’s compare that to a normal paid rate in non-peak season.
If you stayed five nights and booked the absolute cheapest pre-paid rate, you’d pay just over $4,000.
Alternatively you could redeem 320,000 Honors points. If you’re acquiring those points for ~0.5 cents each, that’s the equivalent of paying $1,600. Not only is that 60% off, but it gives you a much more flexible cancelation policy.
There are also plenty of circumstances under which you can value at more mid-range hotels. For example, I’ve also redeemed 30,000 Honors points for a night at the Hilton Tallinn, when the paid rate would have been over 500EUR. Talk about a heck of a deal.
On top of that Hilton has adjusted their Points & Money awards, where you can now redeem part points and part cash towards any redemption. There are many instances where you can get way over 0.5 cents of value per point through that system.
Which Credit Card Should You Buy Hilton Points With?
Hilton points purchases are processed by points.com, meaning they don’t count as a hotel purchase for the purposes of credit card spend.
Therefore I’d recommend using a card on which you’re trying to reach minimum spend, or otherwise a credit card that maximizes your return on everyday spend, like the Chase Freedom Unlimited® (review) or Citi® Double Cash Card (review).
See this post for more on which credit cards are best for buying points.
Earn Hilton Points With Great Amex Card Offers
If you’re looking for another way to earn Hilton Honors points without outright buying them, at the moment there are great welcome bonuses on Hilton’s four co-branded Amex cards:
Buy Hilton Points Summary
0.5 cents per point is the lowest cost you’ll see per purchased Hilton point, so offers don’t get better than this. There are many circumstances under which it could make sense to acquire Hilton points at this price. Hilton Honors has grown on me a ton, especially thanks to the Aspire Card.
Of course while I like this promotion in general, for most people this isn’t the time to buy points. If you’ve been considering this promotion but haven’t yet made a purchase, you have just a couple more days to do so.
Do you plan on buying Hilton Honors points with a 100% bonus?