New Amex Hilton Cards

 

So as you might have heard earlier this year American Express became the sole partner for Hilton credit cards. Before you had the choice either Citi or Amex. However now we see the shall we call them fruits of the labor with a new set of benefits and 2 new cards.

First of if you have a Citi Hilton card it will be converted to American Express. Here is how the changes will come

As of January 30, 2018, Citi Hilton cards will be converted into American Express Hilton cards:

  • Those with the no-fee Citi Hilton Honors Card will receive the no-fee Hilton Honors American Express Card
  • Those with the Citi Hilton Honors Reserve Card will receive the Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card (formerly known as the Surpass Card)

Thats the Citi part of it. Now for the new products

A new Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card ( Premium, $450 annual fee)

  • 14X Hilton Honors Bonus Points at hotels and resorts in the Hilton portfolio worldwide
  • 7X Hilton Honors Bonus Points on flights booked directly with airlines or amextravel.com, car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies and at U.S. restaurants
  • 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points on other purchases
  • Complimentary Hilton Honors Diamond status
  • One Weekend Night Reward at a hotel or resort in the Hilton portfolio with your new Card and each year of Card Membership
  • A second Weekend Night Reward at a hotel or resort in the Hilton portfolio after spending $60,000 in purchases on the Card in a calendar year
  • Unlimited Priority Pass™Lounge passes to ease the airport experience
  • $250 Airline incidental fee statement credit
  • $250 Hilton resort statement credit
  • $100 on-property credit at Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts and Conrad Hotels & Resorts when booking the exclusive Aspire Card package
  • Access to 24/7 American Express concierge
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $450 annual fee

Now these benefits as pretty good considering the price of $450 a year. The fact that you get Diamond ( top tier) status has a definite YMMV value to it. Personally I have gold and have gotten about $100 worth out of it when staying 2 or more nights anywhere,  then there are the other items you receive that are a personal value perk such as late check out, high speed internet, early check in etc. Diamond is pretty much the same as gold except you get a little more of a preferred status and also you get bonus points during your stays. But this Aspire card comes with 2 major price decreasing perks: First is the $250 annual airline credit,  basically anything seat upgrades, bag fees or food you get for free. Next we also have another $250 credit but for Hilton resorts, now I’m not completely sure if this is for room service and other extras or if it will count towards nightly rates, either way if you make proper use of these 2 credits its like Amex is paying you $50 dollars to have their credit card. But personally for me the best perk of this card Is the annual weekend stay, if you use this right you can save major dough by staying at one of their luxury hotels. They are already paying you 50 dollars to have use their credit card and now they are giving you a free stay at their hotels. This is clear winner.

Hilton-Amex-Aspire

Next is the Hilton Honors American Express Ascend (midlevel, $95)

  • 12X Hilton Honors Bonus Points at hotels and resorts in the Hilton portfolio worldwide
  • 6X Hilton Honors Bonus Points at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. restaurants, and U.S. gas stations
  • 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points on all other eligible purchases
  • Complimentary Hilton Honors Gold status; Earn Diamond status after spending $40,000 in purchases on the card in a calendar year
  • One Weekend Night Reward at a hotel or resort in the Hilton portfolio after spending $15,000 in purchases on the card in a calendar year
  • 10 free Priority Pass™Lounge passes to ease the airport experience
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $95 annual fee

This one is what your Hilton Honors Surpass card will get changed to. Also note the increase in annual fee. Bonus points stay pretty much the same as before. The only actual difference is that now you will receive a free weekend night after spending 15k a year, before you only got one on your first anniversary and that was it. Also you now get 10 free Priority Pass™Lounge passes, which since lounge access passes  are around $27 dollars thats about $270 extra. This seems like a pretty good package for a $95 annual fee, especially with 15,000 annual spend getting me a free weekend night at any Hilton, I will definitely be keeping this one.

Hilton Honors American Express ( entry level, no fee)

  • 7X Hilton Honors Bonus Points at hotels and resorts in the Hilton portfolio worldwide
  • 5X Hilton Honors Bonus Points at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. restaurants, and U.S. gas stations
  • 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points on all other eligible purchases
  • Complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status; Earn Gold status after spending $20,000 in purchases on the Card in a calendar year
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • No annual fee

This card is the starter card for the Hilton Honors card family. The Bonus points are pretty reasonable if you use Hilton often. This card remains pretty much unchanged except for the removal of foreign transaction fees, which is a welcome bonus for all of the Hilton Cards.

Overall I am pretty pleased with the changes that are coming to the credit cards, however the big question mark left is if there will be lucrative sign up bonuses( or any sign up bonus, since they control the market for these cards now). My biggest question is if I get product changed to the new card will I still be eligible for the bonus with said card. As more information comes out I will update you guys.

What are your thoughts?

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