Hilton Honors Ultimate Guide [Earn, Redeem, & Elite]

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Welcome to the ultimate guide on mastering the Hilton Honors loyalty program. This comprehensive article will explore all the intricacies of earning and redeeming Hilton points and achieving elite status perks.

You’ll learn strategies to maximize point earnings on hotel stays, credit card spending, and through partners, and how to use your points. You will discover how to qualify for Gold, Diamond, and other elite tiers and the benefits of each level. 

Let’s dive right in.

Table of Contents

Waldorf-Astoria-Park-City Hilton
Photo: Waldorf Astoria Park City

Earning Hilton Honors Points

There are many ways to earn Hilton Honors points:

Stays at Hilton Hotels

You can earn 10x points at most Hilton Honors brands for up to four rooms on the same reservation. Stays at Home2 Suites and Tru earn 5x points.

Hilton Honors elite members earn an additional bonus of 20% for Silver, 80% for Gold, and 100% for Diamond.

Here is a summary of all the Hilton Honors brands:

Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts: A luxury brand known for its iconic properties and exceptional service.

LXR Hotels & Resorts: A collection of independent luxury properties.

Conrad Hotels & Resorts: A global luxury brand with a focus on contemporary design, innovation, and a commitment to offering personalized experiences.

Canopy by Hilton: An energizing, neighborhood hotel that is thoughtfully local, offering a comfortable stay.

Signia by Hilton: A premium brand that aims to transform the meeting and event experience.

Hilton Hotels & Resorts: The flagship brand offering full-service hotels and resorts in prime locations.

Curio Collection by Hilton: A collection of unique hotels, each with their own history and character in cities across the globe.

DoubleTree by Hilton: Known for its warm cookies at check-in and a welcoming sense of hospitality.

Tapestry Collection by Hilton: A collection of upscale hotels that caters to guests seeking reliability and value with a unique experience.

Embassy Suites by Hilton: An all-suite brand that offers free made-to-order breakfast and a complimentary evening reception.

Hilton Garden Inn: A brand focused on providing thoughtful amenities and services for the savvy business traveler.

Hampton by Hilton: Known for its quality, value, consistency, and service with a smile.

Tru by Hilton: A back-to-basics brand with a zest for life and a desire for human connection.

Homewood Suites by Hilton: An extended stay hotel offering spacious suites with full kitchens and separate living areas.

Home2 Suites by Hilton: A fresh take on extended stay hotels with eco-friendly practices and modern amenities.

Hilton Grand Vacations: A collection of high-quality vacation ownership resorts in renowned travel destinations.

Motto by Hilton: A micro-hotel with an urban vibe in prime global locations.

Tempo by Hilton: A stylish and contemporary brand designed for the modern traveler.

Hilton Honors Credit Cards

One of the best ways to earn a lot of Hilton Honors points is by opening a new Hilton credit card:

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card: Earn 150,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend $6,000 in purchases on the Card within your first 6 months of Card Membership.

Hilton Honors American Express Card: bonus_miles_full

Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card: bonus_miles_full

The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card: bonus_miles_full

Zemi Beach House, LXR Hotels & Resorts
Photo: Zemi Beach House, LXR Hotels & Resorts

Hilton Honors Dining

You can also earn Hilton points when you join the Hilton Honors Dining program.

Just link any credit or debit card to your account, browse for restaurants, dine, and pay using your linked card.

The amount of points depends on if you subscribe to Hilton Dining emails and the amount you dine out:

  • Basic members earn 2x points if you don’t receive Hilton Dining emails.
  • Select members earn 5x points Bonus if you receive Hilton Dining emails.
  • VIP members earn 8x if you receive Hilton Dining emails and complete 11 qualified transactions in the calendar year.

Lyft Rides

Hilton Honors members can earn and redeem points on Lyft rides by linking their Hilton and Lyft accounts.

You can earn 3 Hilton points per dollar on Lyft rides (economy, luxury, and extra seats) and 2 Hilton points per dollar for shared rides.

Car Rentals

When you book a car rental from Alamo, Enterprise, or National you can earn 500 points per day, up to 5,000 points per rental.

Buy Hilton Honors Points

You can buy Hilton Honors points, which can be a good deal during a sale, allowing you to buy points for around 0.5 cents per point.

Complete Surveys

You can also earn Hilton Honors points by completing surveys via Guest Opinion Rewards.

Points Expiration of Hilton Points

Hilton Honors points normally expire 24 months from inactivity, but they can be extended whenever you have any sort of qualifying activities on your account such as earning points, redeeming points, or even purchasing points.

Redeeming Hilton Honors Points

For the Hilton Honors program, redeeming your points for free hotel nights is the best value.

Unfortunately, Hilton does not publish an award chart so the cost to use your points varies based on several factors such as the demand for the hotel and the cash price for your chosen dates.

The price for a “standard room” is between 5,000 points for budget properties and 150,000 points for ultra-luxurious properties like the Waldorf Astoria Maldives.

Hilton also lets you book a “premium room”, which allows you to book suites, villas, and better rooms, but the price for these are much higher than standard rooms.

All Hilton Honors elite members (including Silver, Gold, and Diamond members) receive a fifth night free on award stays, which is a way to help save points on longer award stays.

Hilton Garden Inn
Photo: Hilton Garden Inn

Hilton Elite Status

Here is what you need to know about Hilton Honors’ elite status program:

How to Earn Hilton Elite Status

You can earn Hilton Honors elite status by reaching these requirements:

  • Silver = 10 Nights, 4 Stays, or 25,000 Base Points.
  • Gold = 40 Nights, 20 Stays, or 75,000 Base Points.
  • Diamond = 60 Nights, 30 Stays, or 120,000 Base Points.

Additionally, any nights you earn more than a status level rollover to the following year. For example, if you earned fifty nights, ten nights would rollover (50 – 40 nights required for Gold).

But there are also several faster paths to earn Hilton Honors elite status:

Hilton Elite Status Benefits

As a Hilton Honors Silver elite member, you’ll enjoy these valuable benefits:

20% Points Bonus:  Earn 12 points (10 base points plus 2 bonus points) per dollar spent on Hilton stays. Tru and Home2 purchases earn 6 points (5 base points plus 1 bonus points) per dollar spent. 

Two Complimentary Bottles of Water per stay at Waldorf Astoria, LXR, Conrad, Signia, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Curio Collection, DoubleTree, Tapestry Collection, Embassy Suites, and Hilton Garden Inn.

Fifth Night Free on Reward Stays: Hilton Silver members get the fifth night free when you redeem points, which could be a valuable benefit when redeeming points at more expensive properties.

Other Benefits: Free Wi-Fi, no resort fees on reward stays, late check-out (if available), choose your room via the Mobile app, and Hilton Honors discount rate.

As a Hilton Honors Gold elite member, you’ll enjoy these valuable benefits:

80% Points Bonus:  Earn 18 points (10 base points plus 8 bonus points) per dollar spent on Hilton stays. Tru and Home2 purchases earn 9 points (5 base points plus 4 bonus points) per dollar spent. 

Milestone Bonuses: If you earn Hilton Gold via nights, you will receive 10,000 bonus points when you reach 40 nights, and an additional 10,000 bonus points for every 10 nights after that.

Space Available Room Upgrades: Gold members are entitled to space available upgrades to preferred rooms up to Executive Floor room types.

  • No complimentary upgrades: Embassy Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton, Tru, Spark, Homewood Suites, Home2 Suites, Hilton Grand Vacations, and Motto.

Food & Beverage Credit or Breakfast: Gold elite members are entitled to either a $10 to $25 daily food and beverage credit for stays in the US or continental breakfast for stays outside the US for you and one additional guest.

  • Applicable Brands: Waldorf Astoria, LXR, Conrad, Hilton, Curio, Signia, Tapestry, Motto, Doubletree, Canopy, Motto, and Hilton Garden Inn (extra points or credit).
  • Exception: No credit if upgraded to an Executive Floor.

My-Way Benefit: Gold members are entitled to a “My Way On-Property Benefit,” which varies by brand. You can customize your selection on Hilton’s website. For brands that offer a food and beverage credit/breakfast, you typically receive points. For other brands, you typically get a choice between extra points or a snack & water.

Two Complimentary Bottles of Water per stay at Waldorf Astoria, LXR, Conrad, Signia, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Curio Collection, DoubleTree, Tapestry Collection, Embassy Suites, and Hilton Garden Inn.

Other Benefits: Free Wi-Fi, no resort fees on reward stays, a fifth-night free on reward stays, choose your room via the Mobile app, and Hilton Honors discount rate.

As a Hilton Honors Diamond elite member, you’ll enjoy these valuable benefits:

100% Points Bonus:  Earn 20 points (10 base points plus 10 bonus points) per dollar spent on Hilton stays. Tru and Home2 purchases earn 10 points (5 base points plus 5 bonus points) per dollar spent. 

Milestone Bonuses: If you earn Hilton Diamond via nights, you will receive 40,000 bonus points when you reach 60 nights, and an additional 10,000 bonus points for every 10 nights after that. Plus, you would have received 20,000 points from reaching 40 and 50 nights.

Space Available Room Upgrades: Diamond members are entitled to space available upgrades to rooms including junior, standard, or one-bedroom suites.

  • No complimentary upgrades: Embassy Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton, Tru, Spark, Homewood Suites, Home2 Suites, Hilton Grand Vacations, and Motto.

Executive Lounge Access: Diamond members are guaranteed access to an Executive Lounge at applicable properties, even if you are not upgraded to the Executive Floor. Many hotels with Executive Lounges offer complimentary happy hours, which could prove to be a valuable benefit.

Food & Beverage Credit or Breakfast: Diamond elite members are entitled to either a $10 to $25 daily food and beverage credit for stays in the US or continental breakfast for stays outside the US for you and one additional guest.

  • Applicable Brands: Waldorf Astoria, LXR, Conrad, Hilton, Curio, Signia, Tapestry, Motto, Doubletree, Canopy, Motto, and Hilton Garden Inn (extra points or credit).

My-Way Benefit: Diamond members are entitled to a “My Way On-Property Benefit,” which varies by brand. You can customize your selection on Hilton’s website. For brands that offer a food and beverage credit/breakfast, you typically receive points. For other brands, you typically get a choice between extra points or a snack & water.

Two Complimentary Bottles of Water per stay at Waldorf Astoria, LXR, Conrad, Signia, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Curio Collection, DoubleTree, Tapestry Collection, Embassy Suites, and Hilton Garden Inn.

Premium Internet: Only Diamond members receive premium internet complimentary, which should be faster than the standard free Wi-Fi.

48-Hour Room Guarantee: Hilton Diamond members are guaranteed the ability to book a room with at least 48 hours’ notice. There are some exceptions including if the hotel is oversold by 10% or “Extraordinary Demand Dates.”

Gift Status: Diamond members who reach 60 nights within a calendar year can gift Gold status to another member, and Diamond status upon reaching 100 nights in a calendar year. The status will be valid for 365 days from the dated gifted.

Diamond Status Extension: Diamond members can request a one-time extension of their Diamond status if they fail to requalify via stays, nights, or base points. The requirements are three years of Diamond status (consecutive years not required) and you need to have earned over your lifetime at least 250 nights (paid or rewards) or 500,000 Base points.

Other Benefits: Reward stays do not incur resort fees, and the fifth reward night is free. You can also get late check-out (if available), choose your room via the mobile app and receive a discount rate through Hilton Honors.

The Verdict

In summary, the Hilton Honors program has established itself as a leading loyalty program in the hospitality industry, offering a wide array of benefits to its members. With the ability to earn and redeem points across a vast network of hotels worldwide, the program caters to both business and leisure travelers.

The tiered membership levels ensure that loyal customers are rewarded with increasing perks, including room upgrades and late checkouts. Hilton Honors continues to evolve, providing innovative ways for members to enjoy travel-related rewards and experiences.

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