5 Benefits That Make Hilton Aspire Card Worth It

5 Benefits That Make Hilton Aspire Card Worth It

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As I often say, I find hotel credit cards to be quite underrated. These cards can be worth holding onto even if you don’t intend to spend a lot of money on them.

For example, I’ve written about how the World of Hyatt Credit Card (review) is great — the card has a $95 annual fee, and I think the Category 1-4 free night certificate offered by the card more than justifies the annual fee in and of itself.

But there’s one even more premium hotel credit card that I find to be at least as valuable. I’ve had this card for a few years now, and have consistently gotten outsized value from it. Specifically, I’m talking about the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card (you’re potentially eligible for this card even if you have another card in the Hilton Honors portfolio).

The card has a $450 annual fee, which is on the high side for a hotel credit card, though this is a card that’s ridiculously rewarding.

The Hilton Aspire Card is offering a welcome bonus right now of 150,000 Hilton Honors points after spending $4,000 within the first three months, though what makes this card so worthwhile is the long-term benefits it offers. In no particular order, I’d say the below five benefits more than justify the annual fee on the card.

Hilton Honors Diamond status

Just for having the Hilton Aspire Card you receive Hilton Honors Diamond status. That’s valid for as long as you keep the card, and this is Hilton’s top tier hotel status. That’s right, you get top tier status just for having a credit card.

This gets you bonus points, breakfast or club lounge access (or a food & beverage credit within the US), room upgrades subject to availability, premium Wi-Fi, and more.

While I don’t consider Hilton Diamond to be the most valuable top tier status, getting it just for having the card is a phenomenal deal, especially as Hilton has a huge global footprint. I’ve been especially impressed by how Hilton has been growing its luxury footprint, with more Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, and LXR properties opening around the globe.

Receive complimentary breakfast wit Hilton Honors Diamond status

Annual free night reward

With the Hilton Aspire Card you receive an annual free night reward your first year and every subsequent year. This can be redeemed at virtually any Hilton Honors property in the world where there’s a standard room available (here’s the small list of excluded properties).

Historically this has been a weekend night reward (meaning it has to be redeemed on weekend nights), but those issued through December 31, 2022, are valid for stays any days of the week.

Hilton properties retail for up to 150,000 points per night, so cardmembers can get a lot of value out of this. Just to give some examples of the last two places that I’ve redeemed these free night certificates:

Suffice it to say those are some amazing uses of the certificates, and I can’t wait to see where I redeem them next.

I’ve used my free night certificate at the Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos

$250 annual Hilton resort credit

Every cardmember year you receive up to $250 in statement credits for eligible purchases made directly with participating Hilton resorts using your Hilton Aspire Card. See this link to find all participating resorts.

What’s great is that virtually any spending at these resorts should qualify, regardless of whether we’re talking about the room rate, dining, spa treatments, activities, etc. So as long as you spend just $250 per year on the card at Hilton resorts, you should be able to make full use of this benefit.

You could even redeem your anniversary free night certificate at a top Conrad or Waldorf Astoria resort and then use the $250 to get massages, a nice dinner, etc. For example, I just redeemed points for a stay at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives, and was able to use my $250 credit toward incidentals. It can take 8-12 weeks for credits to be posted, but in practice the credit generally posts much faster than that.

Use your resort credit toward a dinner at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives

$250 annual airline fee credit

The Hilton Aspire Card offers a $250 airline fee credit every calendar year. You need to designate an airline, and then eligible fees will automatically be reimbursed. Technically these post within four weeks of an eligible purchase, though in practice they typically post much faster than that.

This works very similarly to the benefit on The Platinum Card® from American Express (review). The terms state the following regarding what purchases aren’t eligible:

Airline tickets, upgrades, mileage points purchases, mileage points transfer fees, gift cards, duty free purchases, and award tickets are not deemed to be incidental fees.

Your airline fee credit can save you money with major US airlines

Priority Pass membership

The Hilton Aspire Card offers a Priority Pass membership for as long as you’re a cardmember (enrollment required), making it one of the best cards for Priority Pass. Priority Pass is the world’s largest network of independent airport lounges, giving you access to 1,300+ lounges around the globe.

Getting this as an additional perk on top of all the other benefits offered by the card is pretty awesome.

Cardmembers can get a Priority Pass membership

Bottom line

The Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card in many ways is too good to be true, and I’ve gotten so much value out of the card. For a $450 annual fee you’re getting an annual free night reward, a $250 airline fee credit, a $250 Hilton resort credit, top tier Hilton Diamond status, and a Priority Pass membership.

Personally I get more than $450 of value out of the free night certificate alone, so as far as I’m concerned the rest of the benefits are just the icing on the cake.

And I’m not even talking about all of the benefits of the card, as the Hilton Aspire also offers access to Amex Offers, and much more. See this post for more details on how all of the benefits of the card work, and see this post for a detailed review of the Hilton Aspire Card.

Anyone else love the Hilton Aspire Card as much as I do?

Conversations (14)
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  1. D3kingg Guest

    I’m both anxious and excited to get this card. Diamond status will rock.

  2. John Guest

    The food and beverage credit (instead of free continental breakfast) is being piloted at Hilton Toronto (without any notice other than being told at Checkin!!). This is hugely disappointing as this will be a devaluation of Hilton Honors elite members benefits outside the US. Huge confusion created and many gold members very disappointed. I will stop using Hilton outside the US if this is confirmed. The credit is CAD$18 per person which doesn’t even cover...

    The food and beverage credit (instead of free continental breakfast) is being piloted at Hilton Toronto (without any notice other than being told at Checkin!!). This is hugely disappointing as this will be a devaluation of Hilton Honors elite members benefits outside the US. Huge confusion created and many gold members very disappointed. I will stop using Hilton outside the US if this is confirmed. The credit is CAD$18 per person which doesn’t even cover the cost of continental breakfast… please make a story on this So that Hilton is aware that this would be a huge blow to their business.

  3. Liz Guest

    @tennen - I use my airline credits for Southwest when I redeem points. The $11.20 taxes per ticket are credited back. Also, can be used for Early bird check in. I buy enough points tickets to use up my $250 this way.

  4. Rick Guest

    Best use of the airline credit if you get free bags and seat assignments is Admirals Club daily passes. You will be able to get 4 - $59 per, the last $14 will get you a scotch and water.

  5. DCS Diamond

    While I don’t consider Hilton Diamond to be the most valuable top tier status...blah, blah, blah.

    The host of this site may not find the Hilton Honors Diamond status to be compelling, but considering how much it costs and the long list of perks that one gets just for having the card that nicely complement or extend those that come with the status, I believe that for my money it is the most compelling...

    While I don’t consider Hilton Diamond to be the most valuable top tier status...blah, blah, blah.

    The host of this site may not find the Hilton Honors Diamond status to be compelling, but considering how much it costs and the long list of perks that one gets just for having the card that nicely complement or extend those that come with the status, I believe that for my money it is the most compelling top elite status out there... second only to the status I am about to earn after I complete a 9-night stay in London for which I leave next Friday: Lifetime Diamond. What will get me there? Twelve years straight as a HH Diamond and 2,000,000 lifetime base point -- a monumental feat that got fast-tracked, shortening the quest by at least one year, when starting in August 2021 (and still ongoing until 12/31/2022) every bonus point earned with any AMEX HH card [up to 14x with the Aspire!] counts both as redeemable and as base points.

    The HH Aspire Diamond status: if you don't got it, get it, and if you got it, don't ever leave home without it!

  6. Tennen Gold

    @Ben, could you add a post on how you use the airline fee Amex credit? I'm curious about how you maximize this, especially if you have elite status.

    What exactly are you charging? Baggage fees are waived. Change fees are gone. You get free seat assignments. Gift cards, upgrades, and tickets don't count. You have lounge access through other means (elite status, Amex Plat, Priority Pass, AA Citi, etc.).

    1. TimR Guest

      Check Flyertalk for individual DP's for different airlines. I use mine to buy United Travel Bank for future UA revenue tickets

  7. Luke K Guest

    Are you still eligible for the sign up bonus if you've done the standard 100k Amex Platinum sign up offer?

    1. Gaurav Community Ambassador

      Yes, completely different cards.

  8. Sel, D. Guest

    Best CC in my wallet. Currently at the Waldorf Pedregal on the free night certificate. Room after fees would be about $2k. Absolutely blown away. Thanks for the guidance over the years Lucky.

  9. PT Bola Guest

    I wish they have this card in my country!

    1. Creditcrunch Gold

      I too wish we could see the kind of credit cards and associated perks in my part of the globe! Makes we wonder though if offering all these deals is just encouraging more US citizens into debt and if the bubble will burst like sub prime did.

    2. skimegheath Gold

      Same here for Australia!

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

TimR Guest

Check Flyertalk for individual DP's for different airlines. I use mine to buy United Travel Bank for future UA revenue tickets

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D3kingg Guest

I’m both anxious and excited to get this card. Diamond status will rock.

0
John Guest

The food and beverage credit (instead of free continental breakfast) is being piloted at Hilton Toronto (without any notice other than being told at Checkin!!). This is hugely disappointing as this will be a devaluation of Hilton Honors elite members benefits outside the US. Huge confusion created and many gold members very disappointed. I will stop using Hilton outside the US if this is confirmed. The credit is CAD$18 per person which doesn’t even cover the cost of continental breakfast… please make a story on this So that Hilton is aware that this would be a huge blow to their business.

0
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