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Top reasons to get the Amex Hilton Aspire card


We consider the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card to be one of the best hotel credit cards currently on the market, despite its $550 annual fee (see rates and fees), because its perks easily offset this significant cost and then some.

The information for the Hilton Aspire Amex card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

THE POINTS GUY

The card is currently offering a 180,000-point bonus after spending $6,000 on purchases in the first six months of account opening, which, based on TPG’s most recent monthly valuations, is worth $1,080. The offer ends on Jan. 17.

Related: Why Hilton’s top credit card has me switching my hotel loyalty

From airline fee credits to Hilton elite status and high earning rates, here are six reasons the Hilton Honors Aspire Card is worth adding to your wallet.

Top-tier elite status

Quite possibly, the greatest perk that comes with the Aspire card is complimentary Hilton Honors Diamond status for the primary cardholder. Unlike the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card, you’ll receive this status as long as your card account is open, without having to reach any minimum spend.

THE WALDORF ASTORIA CHENGDU/PHOTO COURTESY OF HILTON

Diamond status comes with 100% bonus points, executive-floor lounge access, free breakfast and room upgrades, among other benefits. It’s typically earned after 30 stays or 60 nights or by earning 120,000 base points in a calendar year (which equates to $12,000 in spending).

Related: What is Hilton Honors elite status worth?

Up to three reward nights each year

With the Aspire Card, you’ll receive one night at almost any Hilton property worldwide after opening your account and again each year on your cardmember anniversary. You’ll also receive a second and third night when you spend $30,000 and $60,000 on the card in a calendar year, respectively.

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BENJI STAWSKI/THE POINTS GUY

As long as the property is eligible and there’s a room available, this benefit has no exclusions, so even infrequent travelers should be able to take advantage of this perk and save hundreds of dollars a year.

Related: Maximizing Amex Hilton free night certificates

$200 airline-fee credit

The Hilton Aspire comes with an annual up to $200 airline incidental fee credit that can be used to offset travel costs. The credit is up to $50 each calendar quarter, and eligible purchases are those made directly with an airline or through amextravel.com

Related: How to maximize the Amex Hilton Aspire card

$400 Hilton resort statement credit

Each cardmember year — defined by the date you opened the account — you will receive up to a total of $400 in statement credits to spend at eligible Hilton resorts. The credit is bi-annual. Thereforee, cardholders receive up to $200 between January to June and July to December.

The best part about this benefit is that it’s not limited to incidental charges, such as meals and spa treatment. It can also be used toward room rates and taxes, effectively getting you another night or two at one of the eligible resorts.

HILTON

Putting aside all of the card’s other benefits, the $200 airline-fee credit and $400 resort credit alone offset the card’s $550 annual fee (see rates and fees).

Related reading: 5 ways to use the Amex Hilton Aspire $250 resort credit

Up to $100 Hilton on-property credit

Each time you book at least a two-night paid stay at a participating Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts or Conrad Hotels & Resorts property through HiltonHonorsAspireCard.com by verifying your card number or by mentioning code ZZAAP1 when booking by phone, you’ll receive up to a $100 credit for incidentals during your stay.

WALDORF ASTORIA DUBAI PALM JUMEIRAH/FACEBOOK

Unlike the resort credit, this really is just for incidentals and can’t be used to cover the cost of the room or property fees. However, it can still be an extremely valuable perk if you spend two or more nights at eligible properties.

Related reading: 4 reasons why the Hilton Aspire Card is the best premium card for families

Impressive earning rates

The Aspire card earns you a whopping 14 points per dollar on paid stays within the Hilton portfolio. Based on TPG’s valuation of 0.6 cents per Hilton Honors point, that’s an 8.4% return on spending — much more rewarding than any other cobranded hotel card. Since the card comes with complimentary Hilton Honors Diamond status, and one of the benefits of that status is a 100% point bonus for Hilton stays (or 20 points per dollar at most Hilton properties), you’ll actually be earning a total of 34 points per dollar on most Hilton stays as a cardholder, meaning a 20.4% return.

While not as competitive for other travel purchases as premium cards such the Platinum Card® from American Express or Chase Sapphire Reserve, you’ll also earn 7 points per dollar spent (a 4.2% return) on flights booked directly with airlines or at amextravel.com, car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies and at U.S. restaurants; and 3 points per dollar (a 1.8% return) on all other spend with the card.

Related reading: How to choose the best Hilton credit card for you

Bottom line

There are many reasons to love the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire, and it’s pretty easy to maximize its benefits to more than offset its annual fee — even if you don’t routinely stay at Hilton hotels. With perks such as top-tier elite status and 34 points per dollar earned on stays with the brand, the card sets a new precedent for hotel cobranded credit cards.

To learn more, check out our full review of the Amex Hilton Aspire card.

For rates and fees of the Hilton Aspire Card, please click here.



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