An example of the number one question I’ve gotten in the last few weeks:
Should I use the free night certificates from my Hilton Reserve card by 3/28? After Hilton’s major devaluation (don’t get me started…), there will be 10 categories after 3/28 and the free nights are good at category 1-7 according to the terms.
Sam is asking about the two free weekend nights you earn by spending $2,500 within four months on the Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card credit card. What makes the nights so valuable is that they are valid at almost every Hilton in the world including insanely fancy and expensive properties like the Conrad Koh Samui, which is going for $633+ per night in June.
The Conrad Koh Samui is a category 7 hotel currently, the top category, which costs 50,000 points a night. So two free nights there is currently like getting 100,000 HHonors points worth of value from one credit card.
Starting March 28, the Conrad Koh Samui will be a category 10 hotel, the new top category, according to the new hotel categories list. Category 10 hotels will cost 70,000 to 95,000 points per night based on the season.
So Hilton points are seeing a major devaluation, especially at the top end. Two nights at the best Hiltons in the world at peak times was 100,000 points; now it will be 190,000 points.
But is the Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card seeing the same type of devaluation? That’s what Sam wants to know. The card’s terms and conditions say that the free nights are good for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night stays at category 1-7 properties.
If these terms remained unchanged, it would be a huge devaluation. No longer would the free nights be good at the top tier properties like the $633+ Conrad Koh Samui. Instead they would only be good up to the new tier 7, which surely includes nice hotels, but not the kind that make you drool.
Translation: the award chart devaluation is not a Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card devaluation. You will now be able to use the free nights at the new Categories 1-10.
I’m working to independently verify this, but it is fantastic news for all of us–perhaps most of all Rookie Alli, who just got the Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card. I’m planning to get the card soon, and I want to make sure I can get two nights at a hotel that I could never afford (or even if I could, I wouldn’t stay at because I’d feel guilty about the price.)
In recent weeks the Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card has shot up the list of best Citi card offers. Unfortunately this isn’t because the offer has improved–just because all the other Citi offers have gotten worse.
Namely the two-browser trick that allowed us to get 100k American Airlines miles for one credit pull is dead (or very near.) And the other Citi cards that offer Hilton points are worth less as those points are worth less under the new award chart.
Here are the bullet points on the Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card.
Application Link: Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card
• Earn 2 weekend night certificates good at select hotels and resorts within the Hilton HHonors portfolio after $2,500 in eligible purchases within 4 months of account opening*
• Earn 10 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on hotel stays within the Hilton HHonors portfolio*
• Earn 5 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on airline and car rental purchases*
• Earn 3 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases*
• Enjoy the benefits of HHonors Gold status as long as you are a cardmember*
• No foreign transaction fees on purchases*
• Travel with ease and enjoy global acceptance with your Citi chip credit card
• Earn an anniversary bonus of 1 weekend night certificate at select hotels and resorts within the Hilton HHonors portfolio each cardmembership year with qualifying purchases*
The good news is that you don’t have to burn your Hilton award nights in the next month for maximum value. The bad news is that you do have to burn your Hilton points in the next month for maximum value.