Hilton Honors has just announced their latest bonus on purchased points, which is valid through December 18, 2018. While you need to log into your account to see the offer, it appears as if all members are eligible for the same offer, for a 100% bonus when you buy at least 10,000 points in one transaction.
Update: Unfortunately it looks like this offer is indeed targeted, and some people are only eligible for an 80% bonus.
The cost to purchase points with Hilton is ordinarily one cent per point (including tax), meaning that through this promotion you’d pay just 0.5 cents per point.
That’s the lowest price we ever see on purchased Hilton points, though there’s an added benefit this time around — Hilton has doubled the cap on how many points you can buy for a limited time. Usually you can purchase a total of 80,000 Honors points before any bonuses per account per calendar year, while right now you can purchase up to 160,000 Honors points.
That means you could purchase a total of 320,000 Honors points for $1,600 if you wanted to.
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 can also be useful if you’re “only” targeted for an 80% bonus, while a friend or family member is targeted for a 100% bonus.
Typically a 100% bonus is as good as offers on purchasing Hilton Honors points get. We’ve never seen a better offer (as far as I know), as typically the offers hover between an 80% bonus and a 100% bonus.
Should you buy Hilton points for 0.5 cents each?
Last year Hilton radically changed their Honors program. They eliminated their traditional award chart, and rather moved to more variable pricing. However, the good news is that there’s still value to be had in the program, as the top properties still won’t cost you more than 95,000 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, the Conrad Maldives is $3,000+ per night in peak season when factoring in taxes and fees (which is totally ridiculous, of course). Meanwhile a redemption costs 95,000 points per night. At a rate of 0.5 cents per point, that’s like paying $475 for a night there.
To take it a step further, if you have elite status and stay five nights on points then the fifth night is free, lowering the average nightly cost to 76,000 points. Furthermore, the above cash rates don’t include the 10% service charge and 12% tax, which don’t apply if you’re redeeming points.
To do a direct comparison, if you booked the cheapest advance purchase rate for five nights (January 1-6), here’s the cost:
Or you could pay a total of 380,000 points, which at a valuation of 0.5 cents each, would cost you $1,900 for the five night stay, or $380 per night.
There are also plenty of circumstances under which you can value at more mid-range hotels. For example, I recently 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.
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 you’ll want to purchase these points with a credit card that maximizes your return on everyday spend, like the Chase Freedom Unlimited® or Citi® Double Cash Card.
Rack up 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:
- The no annual fee Hilton Honors™ Card from American Express is offering a welcome bonus of 75,000 Hilton Honors points after spending $1,000 within three months
- The $95 annual fee Hilton Honors Ascend Card from American Express is offering a welcome bonus of 125,000 Honors bonus points after spending $2,000 on purchases within the first three months
- The $95 annual fee Hilton Honors American Express Business Card is offering a welcome bonus of 125,000 Honors bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months
- The $450 annual fee Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card is offering a welcome bonus of 150,000 Hilton Honors points after spending $4,000 within three months
0.5 cents per point is the lowest cost you’ll see per purchased Hilton point, so offers don’t get better than this. Furthermore, this promotion has the advantage of having the maximum number of points you can purchase doubled. I know lots of people have already maxed out their purchase limit for this year, and will be happy to see this offer.
There are many circumstances under which it could make sense to acquire Hilton points at this price.
Do you plan on buying Hilton Honors points with a 100% bonus?