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Many travelers find themselves gravitating toward Hilton properties as their go-to hotel brand. As many as 118 million people are members of its loyalty program, Hilton Honors.
Whether you’re a regular business traveler or an occasional guest on vacation, joining Hilton Honors can offer additional perks to make your stays even more rewarding. Here are a few reasons to become a Hilton Honors member.
Why join Hilton Honors?
1. It’s easy to get top-tier status
Although Blue members of Hilton Honors, the program’s base tier, receive benefits as soon as they sign up, the hotel has made it easier for its members to reach elite status. For 2021, the requirements for Hilton Honors’ elite status tiers (Silver, Gold and Platinum) are reduced by half.
For example, to reach Gold status, you’d typically need to stay 40 nights, complete 20 stays or earn 75,000 base points per year. This year, it takes only 20 nights, 10 stays or 37,500 base points to earn Gold status.
Getting top-tier status is also possible through a co-branded credit card. Below is the complimentary elite tier status you can receive automatically by becoming a cardmember.
The Hilton Honors American Express Card has a $0 annual fee, which can be advantageous for infrequent travelers who want to reach elite status faster. Other Hilton Honors cards in the lineup have annual fees of $95 to $450. Terms apply.
» Learn more: How to choose between Hilton credit cards
2. Hilton has a global footprint
No matter where your destination is in the world, chances are high that you’ll find a Hilton property. There are more than 6,500 Hilton properties worldwide, across 119 countries.
In Florida alone, you can choose from one of 434 Hilton properties for your next stay. Hilton’s international accommodations are also plentiful. London, for example, has 89 Hilton properties, while Japan offers 14.
3. Its portfolio includes properties for all budgets
Another reason so many members are drawn to Hilton Honors is its broad range of brands and price points. It currently owns 18 brands that serve budget-minded travelers, as well as those who prefer five-star accommodations.
Within its brand portfolio, you’ll find midscale brands like Tru by Hilton, upper-midscale brands like the Hampton by Hilton, upscale brands like Embassy Suites and luxury accommodations like the renowned Waldorf Astoria.
4. There are many ways to accumulate points
You can also amass points faster through other Hilton Honors features, like receiving gifted or transferred points from a friend or family member, or even buying points if you're just a few points shy of a redemption.
Another feature is pooling points, which lets you and up to 10 members combine points for your next reward stay — a particularly useful option for family trips or when traveling with a group of friends.
» Learn more: The complete guide to earning Hilton Honors points
5. You'll get immediate benefits just for signing up
As soon as you join Hilton Honors, you’ll automatically get access to the benefits and convenience that you’ve come to expect from modern travel. These include:
Hilton booking discounts.
Complimentary standard Wi-Fi.
Late and express checkout.
A second in-room guest for free.
The convenience of not having to wait in a line to check in helps you avoid wasting precious time in your day while you’re on vacation. And as many travelers can agree, a complimentary late checkout is always appreciated to slow the tempo and ease into the stress of a travel day.
» Learn more: How to find and book hotels
6. Award stays include a 5th night free
One of the most lucrative benefits from the Hilton Honors program is its fifth-night-free perk for elite members. Whether you’re a Silver, Gold or Diamond member, when you redeem points for four nights, you’ll receive the fifth night of a consecutive booking free. You can claim the fifth free night on award stays that are up to 20 consecutive days.
For example, if you’re planning a 12-night award stay at a Hilton property, you’ll get the fifth and 10th nights free. This benefit applies to an unlimited number of stays, giving you continuous savings for long trips, year-round.
» Learn more: Hidden hotel fees to look out for
7. It's free
Does it cost money to join Hilton Honors? No — which is why the program is absolutely worth joining, regardless of how frequently you travel.
The only requirement for signing up is your basic information (such as name and home address) and a password. Then, your free Hilton Honors membership will be ready to go.
» Learn more: Beginner's guide to points and miles
If you’re thinking of joining Hilton Honors
It doesn't cost anything to join Hilton Honors, and members enjoy the versatility of this loyalty program. With the ease of earning points, a diverse brand portfolio and instant benefits like in-room Wi-Fi, the lowest price on Hilton bookings guaranteed and digital check-in, you can enjoy the immediate perks of being a member without jumping through hoops to reach status.
Plus, if you find you want to become a Hilton Honors loyalist, the program makes it easy to fast-track your way to elite status via its credit card options.
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