CNN Underscored reviews financial products such as credit cards and bank accounts based on their overall value, but does not review all financial companies or all available financial offers. We may receive compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as CreditCards.com, and this compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site.
With vaccines slowly rolling out around the world, many travelers are starting to plan out their next vacation, even if it may not be for several more months. And if you’re looking to use points and miles to help offset the cost of your getaway, you should take a look at the new welcome offers now available on several Hilton credit cards.
Hilton offers four different American Express credit cards — three personal cards and one business one — so you can pick the card that works best for your needs, with options ranging from a no-annual-fee card to a high-end luxury travel card.
Both the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card and The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card are currently offering 150,000 bonus points after you spend $2,000 in purchases within your first three months after opening the account, plus a $150 statement credit after your first purchase on the card within the same three month timeframe.
Those two Hilton cards carry $95 annual fees, but if you prefer having a card with fewer benefits but no annual fee, the Hilton Honors American Express Card is offering a slightly lower 100,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases within your first three months of card membership, plus a $100 statement credit after your first purchase on the card within the first three months.
And if you’re looking for a high-end luxury travel credit card, the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card is the way to go, with 150,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within your first three months of card membership.
Although 150,000 points might sound astronomically high compared to many other travel credit cards, not all points are created equal. Frequent flyer website The Points Guy values Hilton Honors points at 0.6 cents apiece, which makes the 150,000-point offer worth $900 toward Hilton hotel stays.
Combine that with the $150 statement credit you earn with your first purchase on either the Hilton Amex Surpass card or the Hilton Amex Business card, and you’re looking at getting as much as $1,050 in value from just one credit card bonus.
The 100,000 bonus points that currently come with the no-annual-fee Hilton Amex Card are worth $600 toward travel based on The Points Guy’s valuations. Add on the $100 statement credit after your first purchase and you can get as much as $700 in value from the welcome bonus. That’s excellent for a card with no annual fee, even when compared to other travel credit cards.
Related: Lower your expenses by getting one of these credit cards with no annual fee.
And while the Hilton Amex Aspire card currently offers the same 150,000 bonus points as the other two Hilton cards, this card’s $450 annual fee and no statement credit opportunity means you won’t get anywhere near as much from its welcome bonus as you will from the other three Hilton cards right now.
With four different Hilton credit cards to choose from, you might be asking yourself which one is the best. Truly, it depends on your personal travel needs.
If you stay at a Hilton property just once or twice a year, then the no-annual fee Hilton Amex Card may offer everything you need. However, thanks to its significantly higher welcome bonus, the Hilton Amex Surpass card will be much more valuable in your first year as a card member. Even though you’ll have to pay a $95 annual fee on the Hilton Surpass card, you’ll still end up ahead in the first 12 months.
Bonus points aside, you’ll also receive automatic Gold status with the Hilton Amex Surpass, and significantly more points on your Hilton purchases. And although Gold status is only Hilton’s mid-tier elite status level, it still provides late checkout, complimentary breakfast and space-available upgraded rooms.
The Hilton Amex Business card is similar to the Hilton Surpass Card, except its bonus categories are slightly different as they’re focused more on typical business expenses. But one of the perks of the Hilton Amex Business card that you won’t find on the personal Hilton Surpass card is a Priority Pass Select membership that comes with 10 complimentary airport lounge visits per year.
Related: These business credit cards earn rewards and can get you through a cash crunch.
If travel is high on your radar this year — including staying at multiple Hilton properties — then the Hilton Amex Aspire card might be worth considering, even with a less-competitive welcome bonus and higher $450 annual fee.
The card comes with complimentary Diamond elite status, up to $250 in annual airline fee credits for incidental charges at one airline of your choice, up to $250 in credits for incidentals charged to your card at participating Hilton resorts and an unlimited Priority Pass airport lounge membership.
Also, starting when you open your account and at each account anniversary thereafter (meaning each year on the date you first opened the card), you’ll get a weekend night reward certificate with the Hilton Amex Aspire card that can be used at almost any Hilton property.
Ultimately though, the average person will more likely be drawn to one of the lower-cost Hilton cards, and these bonus offers are basically as good as they get. So if you’ve been eyeing a particular Hilton hotel or resort, now’s the time to consider one of these credit cards to help you plan your next vacation.
Learn more about the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card.
Learn more about the Hilton Honors American Express Business Card.
Learn more about the Hilton Honors American Express Card with no annual fee.
Learn more about the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card.
Looking for a travel credit card? Find out which cards CNN Underscored chose as our best travel credit cards of 2021.
Get all the latest personal finance deals, news and advice at CNN Underscored Money.