How to Get the Most from the Hilton Honors American Express Card

The Hilton Honors AmEx is one of the rare no-fee hotel cards to come with elite status.

Rand ShoafAugust 3, 2020
How to get the most from the Hilton Honors American Express Card

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

If you are considering the Hilton Honors American Express Card, you’ll want to know how to get the most from your new card.

You’re probably already savvy to the basics that this card offers if you’ve done some research. However, if reading the fine print isn't one of your hobbies, this guide will help you learn how to maximize the card’s full potential.

We love diving into the details and finding the best ways to get the most out of every rewards card. That's why we've put together a list of what you'll need to do in order to maximize your Hilton Honors American Express Card.

Maximize the welcome offer

American Express has a strict rule that allows you to earn the welcome offer only once per card in your lifetime. Credit card welcome bonuses can change over time. So to get the most value, keep an eye on the Hilton Honors American Express Card welcome bonus and apply for the card when the bonus is high.

Now, could be a good time: Earn 80,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Honors American Express Card after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply. Hilton Honors points are worth 0.5 cent each according to Nerd Wallet’s current miles and points valuations. This places the welcome offer at a value of $375. Because this card has a $0 annual fee, it’s a cheap way to quickly rack up extra Hilton Honors rewards points. Terms apply.

Use your perks

The Hilton Honors American Express Card comes with complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status. Although this isn't considered a top-tier elite status level, it can get you a few extra perks when you stay at Hilton hotels. Terms apply.

Noteworthy benefits of Hilton Honors Silver status include:

  • Fifth night free on award stays.

  • Earn 20% bonus points on stays.

  • Two free bottles of water.

  • Elite rollover nights.

Many Silver status benefits revolve around earning and using points, rather than getting treated like an A-list celebrity during your stays. With this card, you can earn Hilton Honors points faster and stretch your points further when it’s time to redeem free nights.

Book five consecutive award nights to get the fifth night free

The fifth night free on reward stays is a Silver status perk that offers tons of potential for optimizing your Hilton Honors points. When you book reward stays in increments of five nights you'll get the fifth night free. This applies to extended stays, as well (up to 20 nights), which means when you book a 15-night stay you'll get three free nights.

For travelers who like to stay at their destination more than a few nights, this benefit can help you squeeze more value out of your Hilton points.

Earn even more Hilton Honors points

You’ll earn points every time you use this card to make purchases, but you’ll earn the most when you use it to pay for Hilton stays booked directly through the hotel. You’ll also earn solid rewards in several everyday spending categories. Terms apply.

With the Hilton Honors American Express Card, you’ll earn:

  • 7 Hilton Honors bonus points per $1 spent on eligible purchases at a hotel or resort within the Hilton portfolio.

  • 5 points per $1 spent on purchases at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets and U.S. gas stations.

  • 3 points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases.

Terms apply.

This is excellent news for travelers who regularly spend a high-dollar amount in one of these categories and prefer to earn Hilton points over other reward currencies. However, this card won't be the best choice for these types of purchases when traveling internationally because restaurant, supermarket and gas station bonus earnings are in the U.S. only. Terms apply.

The bottom line

The Hilton Honors American Express Card is a great option if you’re prepared to make the most of it. Jump on a high welcome bonus, use the card to make purchases in the categories where you’ll earn the most points and look for opportunities to enjoy a fifth night free on award stays.

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 2020, including those best for:

We want to hear from you and encourage a lively discussion among our users. Please help us keep our site clean and safe by following our posting guidelines, and avoid disclosing personal or sensitive information such as bank account or phone numbers. Any comments posted under NerdWallet’s official account are not reviewed or endorsed by representatives of financial institutions affiliated with the reviewed products, unless explicitly stated otherwise.