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If you’re a Diamond or Lifetime Diamond member in the Hilton Honors loyalty program, one of your loved ones is about to get Hilton elite status — and you’ve found yourself an easy holiday gift to give that won’t cost you a dime.
Beginning next week and through January 2021, Hilton will allow certain members the ability to gift Hilton Honors status to a friend or family member of their choice. The gifted status will last for one year.
In years past, Hilton has allowed elite members to gift status to a friend, but only if they stayed at a Hilton property at least 60 nights in one calendar year. This year, anyone who has Diamond or Lifetime Diamond status can take advantage of the benefit, regardless of the number of nights spent at a Hilton property in 2020.
Hilton designed this as an opportunity "to thank its most elite members for their continued loyalty this season,” according to an email from a Hilton spokesperson.
How it works
A Hilton spokesperson told NerdWallet that all Diamond and Lifetime Diamond members will receive an email in their inbox soon with information on how to gift elite status to someone.
If you currently have Diamond status: You’ll be able to gift Gold status.
If you currently have Lifetime Diamond status: You’ll be able to gift Diamond status.
Diamond status members can gift Gold status
Diamond status is the one of the highest elite tiers in the Hilton Honors program. It can typically be earned after 30 stays, 60 nights, earning 120,000 Honors base points or holding the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card, which has a $450 annual fee. Terms apply.
Alas, Diamond members will only be eligible to gift the Gold status level, which is a slightly lesser tier. While there’s no executive lounge access and a lesser points bonus, Gold status can still be a big money-saver.
Holding Hilton Gold status gives you access to perks like:
80% points earning bonus on stays.
Space-available room upgrades.
Free continental breakfast.
Gold status can also be attained through holding one of two Hilton-branded credit cards, the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card or The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card. It's also possible to receive complimentary Hilton Honors Gold status with The Platinum Card® from American Express. Terms apply.
Lifetime Diamond status members can gift Diamond status
Lifetime Diamond status members are eligible to gift Diamond status this year. This elite, lifelong membership is earned by achieving Diamond status for at least 10 non-consecutive years, plus staying 1,000 cumulative nights (paid or reward stays) or earning 2 million base points.
As a Lifetime Diamond member, your gift of Diamond status will includes unique benefits like:
100% points earning bonus on stays.
Space-available room upgrades.
Executive lounge access.
A 48-hour room guarantee.
The bottom line
If a loved one plans on staying at a Hilton sometime in 2021 and you already have Hilton status, here’s an easy holiday gift idea to help make their next stay a little more delightful. Keep your eyes on your email, as this benefit won’t cost you anything — but it could make someone else’s future Hilton experiences significantly better.
All information about the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card has been collected independently by NerdWallet. The Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card is no longer available through NerdWallet.
How to Maximize Your Rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2021, including those best for:
Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card