Underrated Reasons Why You Need a Hilton Honors American Express Card

Rand ShoafSep 7, 2021

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Hilton is one of the world’s largest hotel chains, so you’re bound to find yourself checking in to one of their properties at some point. When you do, you might want to consider having a Hilton credit card in your wallet so you can earn even more points (and perks) for your stay. And while the have an annual fee (the  will run , in fact), you don't have to pay an annual fee just to get some extra special treatment during your stay.

Especially for people who want to earn credit card points for everyday spending, the  turns out to be a pretty underrated credit card. Even better, it has a  annual fee.

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The annual fee makes this a perfect card for the traveler who is not loyal to Hilton but finds themselves staying at Hilton brand hotels from time to time. With this card in your lineup, you’ll be ready to earn extra points and get a few extra perks during your stay — without paying a dime in annual fees. Terms apply.

Of course, because it’s a -annual-fee card, it. Still, for the occasional traveler, it’s. Terms apply.

What’s not to like about earning a hefty welcome offer, especially when you don’t have to pay anything out of pocket to keep the card?

The welcome bonus is an excellent way to jump-start your Hilton Honors points balance. The bonus points are worth up to 16 free nights when you optimize the fifth free night perk at one of Hilton’s least-expensive properties, like the in Bali, or at least three free nights at a mid-range option like the in Spain.

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The earning rates on this card are impressive. Here is what you’ll earn when you make purchases with your card:

Terms apply.

NerdWallet currently , which means you’ll be earning approximately 3 cents per $1 spent at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets and U.S. gas stations. Although you can do better on some of the most , it's impressive to see a no-annual-fee card contend with some of the highest-earning cards in those categories.

When you pay for Hilton stays with your card, you will earn 19 points per $1 spent. It breaks down like this:

Terms apply.

Don’t expect the complimentary Silver status that comes with the card to get you major VIP treatment. Terms apply. But the benefits are still better than a poke in the eye. The ho-hum perks include complimentary Wi-Fi and water bottles (which is hardly a reason on its own to apply for a new credit card).

However, the real MVP perk of Hilton Honors Silver status is getting a fifth night free on reward stays. Assuming you're someone who typically stays five nights in hotels, rather than bops around from night to night at different locations, you could get an entire night free after you've stayed for four.

Even better, the benefit applies to all stays of five night increments (up to 20 nights). Thus, a 20-night stay would entail four free nights.

All Hilton cards have their merits, and there’s one for every price tier. The  is likely going to net out the best for Hilton regulars given not just the perks that comes with automatic Diamond status, but the myriad of statement credits and even airline lounge access. But if you're turned off by the  annual fee (or any annual fee for that matter), you'll find that even the  can go a long way in making your trip more rewarding.

Terms apply.

All information about the has been collected independently by NerdWallet. The is no longer available through NerdWallet.

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the , including those best for:

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