29 Best Ways To Earn Tons of Hilton Honors Points [2020 Guide]

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With over 5,600 properties in more than 100 countries and 82 million global members, Hilton Honors is one of the largest and most popular hotel loyalty programs in the world.

This means there are plenty of easy ways to earn Hilton Honors points.

From Hilton Honors credit cards, elite status bonus points earnings, to Lift rides—here are the best ways to accrue tons of Hilton Honors points that you can use towards valuable free nights and more.

Earn Hilton Honors Points from Credit Cards

One of the biggest perks of the Hilton Honors program is it comes with lots of ways to earn Hilton Honors points.

If you want to know how to earn Hilton points fast, the answer is using a Hilton co-branded credit card.

American Express Hilton Honors credit cards have high reward points earning rates, which make it a powerful way to earn Hilton bonus points—especially on paid Hilton stays.

Another bonus of earning points with Hilton Honors credit cards is getting automatic Hilton Honors elite status. Depending on the card, you can earn complimentary Silver, Gold or Diamond status.

Here's a look at the different credits cards that earn Hilton points:

Earning points with the Hilton Honors American Express Card

  • Current Bonus: The Hilton Honors American Express Card offers 75,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months (terms apply).
  • Benefits: This card earns 7x points on purchases at Hilton hotels, 5x points on purchases at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. gas stations, and on dining at U.S. restaurants, and 3x points on all other purchases. You will also earn complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status.
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Learn More >

  • Current Bonus: The Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card offers 125,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months (terms apply).
  • Benefits: Its bonus spending categories make this card a powerful way to earn Hilton points. It earns 12x points on Hilton purchases, 6x points at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations, and 3x points on all other purchases. You can also earn a free weekend night at any Hilton hotel each calendar year you spend $15,000 on your card.
  • Annual Fee: $95
  • Learn More >

  • Current Bonus: The Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card offers 150,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months (terms apply).
  • Benefits: This card is stacked with valuable benefits, such as an annual $250 Hilton Resort credit, an annual free weekend night certificate, and $100 on-property credit at Waldorf Astoria and Conrad properties (must book special rate). You’ll also get a $250 Hilton Resort credit, and the automatic Diamond status will get you free breakfast and lounge access at Hilton hotels. Not to mention the annual $250 airline fee credit and airport lounge access with Priority Pass Select membership has you covered when you fly. On top of that, this card earns 14x points at Hilton Honors properties and 7x points on flights booked with airlines or amextravel.com, select rental car companies, and at U.S. restaurants.
  • Annual Fee: $450
  • Learn More >

  • Current Bonus: The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card offers 125,000 points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months (terms apply).
  • Benefits: This card gives you automatic Hilton Honors Gold status, and you'll earn Diamond status when you spend $40,000 on your card in a year. You'll also get airport lounge access with 10 free Priority Pass lounge visits per calendar year. When you spend $15,000 on your card in a calendar year, you will earn a free weekend night certificate valid at any Hilton property. This card also earns 12x points at Hilton properties and 6x points on select business and travel purchases such as flights booked directly with airlines or Amex Travel, U.S. restaurants, U.S. gas stations, and U.S. mobile phone services. For all other purchases, you earn 3x points per dollar.
  • Annual Fee: $95
  • Learn More >

Hilton Honors Credit Card Welcome Bonuses

If you're looking to earn Hilton honors points quickly, there's no better option than taking advantage of Hilton credit card welcome bonus.

Hilton Honors credit cards offer one of the most lucrative ways to earn Hilton points, potentially allowing you to earn up to 54 Hilton points per $1 when you stack special Hilton Honors promotions.

Welcome bonuses available with American Express Hilton Honors cards are always changing, and the Hilton credit card bonus depends on which card you sign up for.

In general the welcome bonuses for the premium Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card will always be higher than the bonuses offered for the basic Hilton Honors American Express Card with no annual fee.

Welcome bonuses for Hilton Honors Amex cards normally range from 50,000 to 150,000 Hilton Honors points.

That's a welcome bonus worth $250 to $750 with the standard Hilton point value of 0.5 to 0.6 cents each. If you use your points wisely, the bonus can be worth double that.

Earn points with everyday spending on your Hilton card

Everyday Spending on Hilton Honors Credit Cards

Regular spending with your Hilton Honors credit card may be one of your best ways to earn Hilton points after welcome bonuses which, after all, aren't something you can count on more than once.

Everyday spending includes all purchases with your Hilton card aside from charges at a Hilton property and anything that falls into a category bonus.

Category bonuses vary by Hilton credit card, and we'll get to these next.

No matter which Hilton Honors credit card you use, you'll earn the same 3x Hilton Honors points per $1.

Earn Points with Bonus Categories

Like we mentioned above, you can boost your Hilton points earnings when you spend in a credit cards bonus category.

Let's take a look at bonus categories offered on Hilton cards:

The Hilton Honors American Express Card earns 5x Hilton bonus points at:

  • US restaurants
  • US gas stations
  • US supermarkets

The Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card earns a slightly higher 6x Hilton bonus points for the same bonus categories.

The Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card earns 7x Hilton bonus points in these categories:

  • US restaurants
  • Car rentals you book directly from select rental agencies
  • Flights booked through Amex Travel or directly with the airline

The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card has popular business bonus categories and earns 6x Hilton points for:

  • US gas stations
  • US restaurants
  • Wireless phone service purchased directly through the service provider
  • Shipping fees
  • Flights booked through Amex Travel or directly with the airline
  • Car rentals you book directly from select rental agencies

Earn 7x points per $1 at grocery stories with the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card

Earn Bonus Points When you Stay at Hilton Hotels

When you book stays at Hilton properties with a Hilton Amex, expect to be well rewarded with bonus points.

How many Hilton Honors points do you earn per stay with your Amex?

Here's how it breaks down.

  • 10x base points as a Hilton Honors member
  • Bonus points based on your status (12x points per $1 at Silver, 18x points per $1 at Gold, and 20x points per $1 at Diamond)
  • Bonus points from your credit card (7x to 14x depending on which Hilton card you use)
  • Any bonus Hilton Honors promotion points (when available)

Earning extra base points with Hilton Honors status

Note that there are a few exceptions to the base points and bonus status points.

Hampton by Hilton hotels in China are entirely excluded from the Hilton Honors program and don't earn Hilton Honors points.

The rate you earn at Home2 Suites by Hilton and Tru by Hilton is also reduced to just 5x base points per $1 and no more than 10x points at Diamond level.

Here's an example breakdown of Hilton Honors points earned per stay depending on which credit card you use.

Let's say you pay for a 1-night stay at a Hilton hotel for $200 with your Hilton Honors credit card.

With Hilton Honors American Express Card you get automatic Silver status. You'll earn 2,000 base points + 400 bonus points (Silver status) + 1,400 points (7x points from the credit card) for a total of 3,800 Hilton points.

With the Hilton Honors American Express Business Card, you'll automatically be boosted to Gold status and earn 2,000 base points + 1,600 bonus points (Gold status) + 2,400 points (12x points from the credit card) for a total of 6,000 Hilton points.

The Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card card gives the biggest bonus and comes with automatic Diamond status. You'll earn 2,000 base points + 4,000 bonus points (Diamond status) + 2,800 points (14x points from the credit card) for a total of 8,800 Hilton points.

With all but the no annual fee version of the Hilton Honors card, you'll earn enough for a free night stay at the lowest tier of Hilton properties which require at least 5,000 points.

Don't forget to look for bonus promotions, too.

Hilton frequently offers bonus promotions that you need to register for. These promotions vary, but they typically offer even more bonus points on Hilton stays.

One recent promotion even allowed you to earn up to 54x Hilton points on each Hilton stay during the promotion!

Maximize your base points earnings with Hilton Honors promotions

Sometimes the promotions are as simple as doubling your points per stay during the promotion period. Other times there are tiers such as 2,000 bonus points per stay plus an extra 10,000 points for 5 stays or 10 nights. You may even get extra points during the promotion for staying at luxury or resort properties.

Make sure you check for Hilton Honors promotions before booking and don't forget to register through your Hilton Honors account!

Earn Extra Points with Hilton Amex Offers

Amex Offers is a program that gives you statement credits or extra points on your American Express card with limited-time, targeted offers.

All Amex cards come with access to Amex Offers, including co-branded Hilton Honors Amex cards.

Thanks to the Hilton-Amex partnership, the Amex Offers program often features ways to earn even more when you stay at properties within the Hilton portfolio.

One recent Amex offer gave a statement credit of $30 to $200 when you reached a certain spending threshold at any of six Hilton brands.

It's important to note that Amex Offers are all targeted. This means different cardholders will see various offers on their card.

Offers are targeted to individuals as well as the card type. If you have different Amex cards, such as an The Platinum Card from American Express and a Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card, you may see various offers on each one.

Offers can come in three forms:

  • Earn extra points per dollar at specific merchants
  • Earn a dollar amount back when you spend a minimum amount at a merchant
  • Earn a specific number of bonus points for spending a certain amount at a merchant

To make the most of Amex Offers, read the terms carefully.

You will need to register for the offer by adding it to your card then you must use the same card to redeem the offer. You usually need to make your purchase directly through the merchant, too.

With a Hilton Amex Offer, you must book through the Hilton app, Hilton.com, or by calling Hilton directly, not using a third-party booking site. Some offers even require signing up through a unique Amex link.

Also, note that almost all offers usually have an expiration date. In the case of Hilton offers, offers often don't apply to advance purchase rates, Save Now & Pay, Advance Purchase, and non-refundable rates. To get the offer, you need to pay for and stay with Hilton before the offer expires.

Make sure you check the Amex Offers on your card, read the terms carefully, and register before making a purchase.

With Amex Offers, you can double-dip or triple-dip to get an excellent return on Hilton stays. It can typically be used in combination with an online portal for non-Hilton purchases to earn Hilton points on your co-branded credit card, or it can be used to leverage bonus categories on your Hilton Aspire, Hilton Ascend, or Hilton Amex card to get more Hilton points at restaurants or car rentals with eligible Amex offers.

For example, you see an Amex Offer to earn an extra point per $1 at GrubHub or The Cheesecake Factory. You sign up and use your Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card Card, which gives you 7x Hilton points at restaurants. Thanks to the offer, you'll now get 8x points on your purchase.

Earn Points Via Other Amex Credit Cards

Do you have other American Express cards besides a Hilton Honors Amex?

You can transfer Membership Rewards points directly into Hilton Honors.

The transfer ration from American Express Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors is 1:2, which isn't too bad. This means every one Membership Rewards point will transfer into two Hilton Honors points.

Amex Membership Rewards points have an average value of 1.8 cents depending on how they're used.

Despite that value, Membership Rewards can be more difficult to earn due to limited credit card bonus categories and Amex's strict once-in-a-lifetime welcome bonus policy.

When redeemed for travel through Membership Rewards, you get a value of 1.0 cent per point on airfare and just 0.75 to 0.85 cents per point on cruises, car rentals, and hotels (except with the The Business Platinum Card from American Express which offers a bonus on redeemed points).

Amex Membership Rewards points have the highest value when they're transferred to a partner airline or hotel loyalty programs like Hilton Honors. With some partners, you can get a very high point value—but only if you value those partners.

Transferring Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors can won't give you the best value for your Membership Rewards points. In general, transferring Membership Rewards points to airline partners is the best way to get the highest value, given the value of Hilton points.

There are exceptions to this rule.

When does it make sense to transfer Amex points to Hilton?

The first thing you should watch for is a targeted offer with an Amex transfer bonus. Targeted cardholders may see a bonus of 10% to 50% when converting Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors points. This isn't uncommon!

Still, there are several cases in which it's a great idea to transfer your Membership Rewards points into Hilton points.

Hilton waives resort fees on freed night awards and elite status members in Hilton Honors get a fifth night free. As we mentioned before, earning Hilton Honors status is easy with any Hilton credit card.

Here's an example of why that maximizes the value of your Membership Rewards points when they're transferred to Hilton.

Let's say you're planning a stay at Hilton Waikoloa Village. Rooms in the resort can reach as high as $630 a night plus a $40 resort fee per day for a total of $670 per night without taxes.

If you book an award night at the property, you only need 60,000 Hilton Honors points. There are no additional fees or taxes to worry about.

For a 5-night stay, you would pay about $3,860 as a Hilton Honors blue member. With Hilton elite status, the stay would cost 240,000 Hilton Honors points thanks to the 5th free night perk.

If you're targeted for the 50% bonus when transferring your Amex Membership Rewards points into Hilton points, you only need to transfer 80,000 Membership Rewards to book the award stay.

That would give your Membership Rewards points a value of around 4.8 cents each.

That's definitely worth jumping on.

Even without the transfer bonus, transferring Membership Rewards points to Hilton points can still give you a solid value if you aren't going to use them for airfare.

Earn points when you refer a friend to an Amex card

Refer-a-Friend for Hilton Honors Credit Cards

Know anyone who wants to earn Hilton Honor rewards points, free stays, and travel rewards?

Referring family members and friends to Hilton Honors credit cards can be an excellent way to earn Hilton Honors points, especially now that American Express has changed its refer-a-friend program.

In the past, you only received a bonus when you referred someone to the specific card you had.

That means if you had the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card, the person you refer would also have to apply and be approved for the same card. If they applied for the a different Hilton credit card you would not earn a referral.

However, in 2018 Amex updated its refer-a-friend program and now allows you to send referral links that let your friends sign up for almost any American Express card.

You'll still get a bonus, even if you don't have the card they get.

Even better, you get the referral bonus offer for the card you referred—no matter which card your friend chooses.

When you send your referral link to friends and family, they will get an offer to apply for the card you referred them to. They can also explore other Amex cards they might like, each with a welcome bonus for them and a referral bonus for you.

This is excellent news if you have a premium American Express credit card like the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card but want to refer people who would be better suited to something with a lower annual fee.

Quick Guide: How to Refer-a-Friend for American Express Credit Cards

To refer someone to American Express, simply generate an Amex refer-a-friend link through your Amex account.

Friends can use this link to sign up, or you can send an email through American Express.

Not all cards are eligible for Amex referral bonus, but most are. Refer-a-friend bonuses sometimes change and depend on the card you refer.

There's also a maximum annual referral bonus per card which may be up to 225,000 points.

Premium cards tend to have the highest referral bonuses. With the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card, for example, you can get 25,000 Hilton bonus points each time an applicant is approved. With the American Express Gold Card, the referral bonus may be 10,000 Membership Rewards points.

Earn Points For Hilton Stays

There's no better way to quickly earn points than by staying at Hilton properties.

Each Hilton stay has the potential to earn points in several ways:

  • Base points through Hilton Honors
  • Elite status bonus points
  • Hilton Honors bonus promotions (including hotel-specific promotions)
  • Milestone bonuses
  • Hilton credit card spending bonuses

All of these bonuses can be stacked, too!

You'll earn Hilton bonus points at all 14 Hilton brands around the world, although some properties have lower base and elite status bonuses:

  • Conrad
  • Canopy
  • Curio
  • DoubleTree
  • Embassy Suites
  • Hampton Inn
  • Hilton
  • Hilton Garden
  • Hilton Grand Vacations
  • Home2 Suites **
  • Homewood Suites
  • Tapestry Collection
  • Tru **
  • Waldorf Astoria

** These hotel chains have reduced reward rates, explained below.

Earn Extra Points with Hilton Honors Elite Status Bonus

As a Hilton Honors member, one of the member benfits is that you will earn extra points on paid Hilton stays. You'll earn 10 base points per $1 you spend at Hilton properties around the world.

You also get elite status bonuses on top of the base points depending on your Hilton Honors status.

Here are the Hilton elite status earning rates:

  • Silver: 20% bonus (12 points per $1)
  • Gold: 80% bonus (18 points per $1)
  • Diamond: 100% bonus (20 points per $1)

With a $200 Hilton stay, you would earn 2,000 points at Blue status; 2,400 points at Gold status; 3,600 points at Gold status; and 4,000 points at Diamond status.

However, it's important to note that at Tru and Home2 Suites properties, the elite tier bonuses are different.

At Tru and Home2 Suites hotels you'll earn:

  • 5x points per $1 at Blue level
  • 6x Hilton points at Silver level
  • 9x points at Gold level
  • 10x points at Diamond level

Earn Extra Points with Hilton Honors Elite Status Bonus

Enroll in Hilton Honors Bonus Promotions

Hilton Honors frequently offers bonus promotions to earn even more points when you stay at Hilton hotels.

You always need to register for Hilton Bonus Promotions to earn the points, which you can do through your Hilton Honors accounts.

Promotions vary and may last for a few weeks or months. Some bonus promotions give you double Hilton points for stays during the promotion period, others have earning tiers.

For example, you may earn 2,000 bonus Hilton points on all stays during the promotion and an extra 10,000 points when you reach 10 nights or a single five-night stay.

It's important to note that bonuses are often dependent on the Hilton hotel brand or property. You may get more bonus points for a stay at a resort or luxury property. There are even location-specific bonuses to watch for.

For example, Hilton recently celebrated the opening of a new Hilton Garden Inn in Chicago by offering 1,000 bonus points per night at the hotel—-but you needed to select the bonus offer at checkout.

Pro Tip: Before booking Hilton stays, check your Hilton Honors account for any promotions and don't forget to sign up! You'll earn extra bonus points!

Earn bonus points with Hilton Honors Milestone Bonuses

Earn Bonus Points with Hilton Honors Milestone Bonuses

The Hilton Honors points you can earn on Hilton stays aren't just limited to base points, elite status bonuses, promotions, and Hilton credit card bonuses. A new addition to the Hilton Honors program is the Milestone Bonuses.

Milestone bonuses award you extra points when you frequently stay at Hilton properties. If you are a Hilton loyalist, this can be a powerful way to boost your point balance.

You'll get an additional 10,000 points for every 10 nights you stay with Hilton, starting at 40 nights per year.

Once you reach 60 nights in a year, you'll get another 30,000 bonus points.

Get Extra Points with Hilton Honors Credit Cards

Don't forget you earn even more on paid Hilton stays when you book with a American Express Hilton credit card.

All Hilton Honors Amex cards offer generous bonus points for purchases at Hilton properties, including your stay and any other charges like parking, valet service, and dining.

If you are staying on an award stay, you can charge anything extra to your room and pay with your card at checkout. This way you'll earn points on any room charges you make during your stay.

The amount of point bonuses earned depends on which Hilton card you have:

And don't forget, Hilton Honors points earned from credit cards are stacked with any other bonus points you earn with your Hilton stay.

Earn Points for Travel

In addition to Hilton stays while you travel, you'll find other ways to earn Hilton bonus points no matter where your next trip takes you.

Whether you want to sign up for airport lounge access or book a car on your next trip, here's how to add even more points to your account when you travel.

Earn bonus points when you book through a Hilton car rental partner

Renting a Car

There are two great ways to earn Hilton points while renting a car:

Plus, when you book with car rental partners including Alamo, National Car Rental, or Enterprise, you'll get Hilton members-only discounts and earn Hilton bonus points.

You earn 500 Hilton points on every qualifying car rental and an extra 500 points for every day of the rental up to 5,000 bonus points.

To earn the bonus points, make sure you enter your Hilton Honors member number when booking through the car rental company.

Booking a cruise? You could be earning more points!

Booking a Cruise

If you are planning on a cruise vacation, book through the Hilton Honors portal to earn points on your trip.

The Hilton portal takes you to CruisesOnly.com, a Hilton travel partner, where you will earn Hilton Honors points based on the length of the cruise:

  • 1-5 night cruise - 6,000 bonus points
  • 6-8 night cruise - 12,000 bonus points
  • 9-12 night cruise - 24,000 bonus points
  • 13+ night cruise - 50,000 bonus points

Just make sure you shop around before booking to make sure you're getting the best deal on your cruise, even with the Hilton points considered.

You can earn extra Hilton rewards when you sign up for Priority Pass

Signing-up for Priority Pass

Priority Pass gives you access to upwards of 1,200 airport lounges across the world with three levels of membership to choose from.

Priority Pass membership ranges from $99 for a standard membership to $429 for a prestige membership.

When you sign up for Priority Pass, you can earn up to 10,000 Hilton Honors points for your first-year membership.

The bonus points will depend on which membership level you choose:

  • Standard: $99/year (4,000 Hilton points)
  • Standard Plus: $299/year (6,500 Hilton points)
  • Prestige: $429/year (10,000 Hilton points)

Of course, if you have a premium travel rewards credit card, such as the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card or The Platinum Card from American Express you'll already have a Priority Pass Select membership with unlimited airport lounge access.

You can transfer points from other rewards programs to Hilton Honors

Earn and Transfer Other Points (and Miles) to Hilton

Short on Hilton Honors points for a reward stay?

You can transfer points and miles from partner loyalty programs into Hilton Honors.

Whether or not you'll get a good value for your miles/points depends on the partner rewards program and how you planned to use the points.

As a general rule, though, transfers to Hilton usually aren't a good value.

To transfer partner airline and rail points or miles into Hilton Honors points, you'll need to contact the partner's customer service and provide your Hilton Honors member number.

American Express Membership Rewards

One of the best transfer partners with Hilton Honors is the American Express Membership Rewards program.

At first glance, this transfer option doesn't look great as the standard transfer ratio is 1 Membership Rewards point to 2 Hilton Honors points.

While Membership Rewards points are usually valued at 1.8 cents each, this depends a great deal on how they're used.

Membership Rewards points have a value of up to 1.0 cent per point when redeemed for airfare, but they tend to have a higher value when transferred to a hotel or airline transfer partner.

You won't get the highest transfer value with Hilton, but there are exceptions.

It's common for American Express to offer a targeted transfer bonus of 10% to 50% when you transfer Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors.

With the 50% bonus, the transfer ratio would be 1.0 Membership Rewards point to 3 Hilton Honors points—-a much better proposition.

If you know you aren't going to transfer your Membership Rewards points to a partner airline, Hilton Honors may give you the best value. That's because Hilton doesn't add resort fees or taxes to reward stays and you can get a fifth night free when you have Hilton elite status.

If you transfer 80,000 Membership Rewards points with the 50% bonus, you'll get 240,000 Hilton points. That's enough to book 5—not 4—nights at a property that requires 60,000 points a night such as the Hilton Waikoloa Village.

At this property, you may pay up to $670 per night with the resort fee without considering taxes. In this case, you'd get a value of 4.8 cents each on your Membership Rewards points.

Diners Club International Club Rewards

The current transfer ratio for Diners Club to Hilton points is 1,250 Club Rewards points for 2,000 Hilton Honors points. Transfers can be made in increments of 1,250 Club Rewards points. Also, note that transfers take about 3 weeks.

Diners Club points have a value of about 2.1 cents per point compared to around 0.6 cents each for Hilton points. This transfer definitely won't give you a good value for your Diners Club points and it isn't recommended.

Hawaiian Airlines Miles

In 2014, Hawaiian Airlines followed Virgin Atlantic by devaluing the conversion to Hilton Honors.

You used to get a ratio of 1:2, but now the transfer rate is 1.0 Hawaiian mile to 1.5 Hilton Honors points.

You also need to transfer in increments of 10,000 miles.

In general Hawaiian miles are worth about 1.9 cents each while Hilton points are worth a standard 0.6 cents each.

Even when the ratio was 1:2, the value you get isn't the best. You're most likely going to get a value of less than 1.0 cent each for your Hawaiian miles when you convert them to Hilton points.

The transfer also takes between 10 and 15 days to process so you can't expect to use it for a last-minute booking.

Virgin Atlantic Airways Miles

You can transfer 10,000 Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles into 15,000 Hilton Honors points as long as you transfer at least 10,000 points.

Virgin Atlantic's loyalty program is unique because it allows you to earn Hilton Honors points and Flying Club miles when you stay at Hilton. Still, the transfer ratio isn't great.

While you can find better redemption values, Flying Club miles are usually valued around 1.2 cents each. Hilton points are worth around 0.6 points each.

Before the transfer ratio between the two was devalued, the transfer would have retained the value of your points. Now, your Flying Club miles will take a hit in value.

Transferring Virgin Atlantic miles to Hilton also takes about 30 days.

You can transfer Amtrak points to Hilton Honors, but the value is just not there

Amtrak Guest Rewards Points

The exchange rate with Amtrak is 5,000 Amtrak Guest Rewards Points for 10,000 Hilton points.

That's better than the reverse: you'd only get 1,500 Amtrak points by transferring out your Hilton points.

As long as you have status with Amtrak, you can transfer Amtrak points to three partners, including Hilton. However, the transfer ratio isn't that great.

Amtrak points are worth about 2.5 to 2.9 cents each while Hilton points are usually worth 0.5 to 1.0 cent each when redeeming for a free night. Even doubling your Amtrak points doesn't retain their value.

Earn Hilton Honors From Shopping and Dining

Unfortunately, Hilton discontinued its Shop-to-Earn Mall in 2018 which used to give you bonus points for shopping at partner retailers like Home Depot through the portal.

Despite this move, there are still ways to earn Hilton Honors points from dining and shopping, even without using a Hilton credit card which gives you Hilton points on all purchases and in bonus categories like restaurants.

Hilton Honors dining program lets you earn points while eating out

Hilton Honors Dining

Hilton Honors Dining is a free program and a great way to earn Hilton points from dining—and even double-dip. You don't even need to be a Hilton Honors credit  cardholder to participate in Hilton Honors Dining.

Signing up for the program is simple. Provide your Hilton Honors member number then link your debit or credit card to get started. Make sure you use your Hilton credit card if you have one.

After signing up, you get bonus Hilton points whenever you use your linked card at a participating restaurant, bar, or club.

Your status in the dining program determines how many Hilton points you can earn with a maximum of 8x Hilton points per $1.

These points are earned on top of Hilton points you earn through your Hilton card or rewards cards you may earn from another linked credit card.

That means using your Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card card at a participating restaurant would give you 7x Hilton points from the card and up to another 8x points through Hilton Honors Dining for up to 15x Hilton bonus points per dollar.

Earn up to 15X Hilton Honors points per dollar on restaurant purchases!

With a standard value of around 0.5 cents each for Hilton points, that's effectively earning you about 7.5% back on qualifying restaurant spending!

The base points you earn through Hilton Honors Dining is 2x points per $1 if you haven't signed up for email notifications.

You get 5x points per $1 as long as you sign up for Hilton Honors Dining email notifications and dine at 10 or fewer participating restaurants per year.

If you dine at 11.0 or more participating restaurants or bars per year and sign up for emails, you get 8 bonus Hilton Honors points per $1.

On top of the regular bonus points Hilton Honors Dining offers, it usually comes with a new member welcome bonus, too.

This bonus is generally around 1,000 Hilton points when you sign up and spend at least $25 at a participating restaurant.

Just note that travel-related dining programs like Hilton Honors Dining share the same network. You can only enroll your credit or debit card with one partner at a time.

If you're earning Hilton Honors points, you won't earn points through any other dining program you have that may earn other points or miles.

Buy Wines on Vinesse Wines

In the market for wine delivered to your door? Hilton has partnered with Vinesse Wines with a special offer for bonus Hilton points.

After signing up for your first wine club shipment, you'll get 3,333 bonus Hilton Honors points plus 13x Hilton points per $1.

There are several club memberships to choose from such as the Four Seasons which ships a four-pack of wines five times a year.

Using OneSimCard for International Calls

If you use your cell phone outside the US, you can earn Hilton Honors points by signing up for OneSimCard which can be used in more than 150 countries with free calls in 54 countries. A OneSimCard card can be inserted into your GSM phone to avoid costly roaming charges.

You'll earn 100 Hilton points when you sign up and 1 point per minute on incoming and outgoing calls using OneSimCard.

To earn the points, you'll need to register at OneSimCard.com and provide your Hilton Honors member number.

Earn extra bonus points by taking online surveys

Take Surveys on Guest Opinion and eRewards

If you have some free time, you can earn Hilton Honors bonus points by completing surveys at home. The catch is the reward isn't that great, and surveys can be incredibly time-consuming.

There are two ways to earn Hilton Honors points from surveys: eRewards and Guest Opinion Rewards. eRewards is by invitation only; you may receive an email from Hilton to join. Guest Opinion Rewards allows you to join and get started right away.

The Hilton points you earn through Guest Opinion Rewards are credited to your Hilton Honors account within 4 to 6 weeks.

Other Ways to Get Hilton Points

There are even a few other ways that you can increase your Hilton Honors points balance. Let's go over your options, so when you're in quick need of points you'll have options.

Pool and Transfer Points with Family and Friends

The Hilton Honors program allows you to pool your Hilton points with up to 10 people to reach awards faster than ever. This move came with Hilton's major overhauling of its program.

You can pool points with any other 10 Honors members, not just family members with the same address.

While there is a cap on the number of points you can pool, it's unlikely you'll hit it. The Points Pooling program allows members to share up to 500,000 points every year with up to 2 million points shared among up to 10 members.

The Points Pooling feature is entirely free, with no fees to add members or share points. You can also join any number of pools. In the past, Hilton used to charge $2.50 for every 1,000 transferred points.

How to pool Hilton points with friends and family

Creating a Hilton Honor Points Pool is easy:

  • Go to Hilton Points Pooling. From your Hilton Honors account, you can also click on "More Ways to Use Points" under "My Account."
  • Invite friends and family to your pool with their name and email address.
  • Once they confirm, your accounts are linked and you can choose how many points you want to share in the pool.

The Points Pooling feature is perfect for redeeming stays while planning a group trip with shared hotel reservations.

Pooled Points can be used for any room reward or non-room reward, including experiences and Points & Money rewards.

You can also transfer points back and forth between Hilton Honors accounts with no fees.

This means that friends and family can share points with you if you're close to an award stay and you can return the favor later.

It's possible to buy Hilton Honors points, but it's usually not a great deal

Buy Hilton Points

Ready to redeem your Hilton points but you're a bit short? You can always buy Hilton Honors points.

The standard price when you buy Hilton points is 1.0 cent each. In most cases, it's not worth it.

However, Hilton sometimes offers bonuses when you buy Hilton Honors points. You may even get a 100% bonus when buying points which makes them just 0.5 cents each. That's just under the typical value for Hilton points so you can actually purchase points for a bit less than they're worth.

It's never a good idea to buy points to entirely pay for your Hilton stay, but buying Hilton points is a useful tool when you're short the points for an extra night or two.

This is especially true if you need enough points to reach 4 nights and get your 5th night free.

It's also good to have the option to buy Hilton points for lower category Hilton properties because they tend to be affordable when using points, but they have a high cash price.

It's also useful to buy Hilton points when you're using the Points & Money redemption option. With Points & Money, which became available in 2017, you can pair points in increments of 1,000 (and starting at 5,000 points) with an equivalent cash value.

You can buy points using Points & Money awards

With Points & Money, the value you get for your points varies a great deal depending on whether you book a stay using only points, pay cash, or use a combination of both. Sometimes you can get a better value by splitting between cash and points to get up to 1.0 cent per point.

As a nifty bonus, you'll still earn points on the cash portion of your booking.

Hilton allows you to buy up to 80,000 Honors points per year—although you can technically buy more points across several accounts and combine them for free.

If you do decide to buy Hilton Honors points, here's a tip: use a rewards card that gives you a reasonable reward rate for non-travel purchases. Hilton point purchases are processed by Points.com, and the purchase won't count as a travel expense.

Wrap Up

Hilton Honors is one of the top hotel loyalty programs in the industry with flexible redemption options, an extensive suite of co-branded Hilton cards and among the easiest hotel points you can earn.

You'll have no trouble racking up tens of thousands of Hilton points with even infrequent Hilton stays, especially if you use a Hilton credit card on paid room rates and pair it with frequent Hilton bonus offers.

FAQ

Which credit card earns the most Hilton Honors points?

Which credit card earns the most Hilton Honors points depends on your spending habits. If you fly frequently your best pick will be the Aspire card. The Surpass card may be better suited for everyday spendings.

What are Hilton Honors elite status tiers?

As a status member of Hilton Honors you can earn elite status tiers on Hilton stays. At most properties, you get a 20% bonus with Silver status, 80% bonus at Gold status, and a 100% bonus at Diamond status.

What can you use Hilton Honors points for?

Hilton points can be used for rewards stays, experiences or can be transferred to airline programs.

When do my Hilton Honors points expire?

Hilton points expire after 12 months of account inactivity. To keep your points active, you need to earn our use points within a 12-month period.

How long does it take for my welcome bonus points to post to my Hilton Honors account?

Your Hilton welcome bonus points will be credited to your account within 8 to 12 weeks of hitting the spending requirement.

How much are Hilton Honors points worth?

Hilton Honors points are worth around 0.5 cents each. Some redemption options have a much lower value, and others have a higher value.

Can I earn Hilton Honors points from flying?

Yes, you can earn Hilton Honors points from flying. The Hilton Honors Amex Aspire card earns 7x points per $1 on flights. You can also earn points through partner airlines and transfer miles to your account.

Do any Hilton Honors credit cards come with free elite status?

All Hilton Honors Amex credit cards come with free elite status in the Hilton Honors program. Depending on the card you will earn Silver, Gold, or Diamond status.

Can I buy Hilton Honors points?

Yes, you can buy Hilton Honors points usually at 1 cent per point. Sometimes Hilton offers bonus promotions of up to 100% when you buy Hilton points, which can make them as low as 0.5 cents each.

Can I earn Hilton points for someone else's stay?

According to Hilton Honors rules, you can't earn Hilton points for someone else's hotel stay if you are not physically present, even if the booking is under your name.

How do you become a Hilton Honors member?

You can become a Hilton Honors member by signing-up on Hilton.com and creating your free profile.

How to find your Hilton Honors account number?

Go to "My Account Overview" when logged-in to find your Hilton Honors account number. You can also find it in your emails (confirmation/welcome email from Hilton Honors), or by calling Hilton Honors customer service.

What is the Hilton Honors customer service number?

The Hilton Honors customer service number for US and Canada is 1-800-548-8690. You can check for the Hilton Honors Customer Service number in your region here.

Extra tips on how to maximize your rewards

Getting the most out of your credit cards is a must. Compare the current best offers with our Card Maximizer tool or take a look at our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2020. Here are the highlights:

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