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This past February, I applied for a number of cards, including the Citi Hilton Reserve. I got the card for the free Hilton Gold status and the big benefit:

  • 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.

I am excited to report that I now have my free night certificates!

What was my experience? How did I receive the certificates? How quickly did they arrive? Where am I thinking of using them?

I originally applied for the card on February 16. I applied online, and after a quick call to Citi’s reconsideration line, I was approved. I received the card in the mail less than two weeks later and activated it.

In order to receive the two free weekend nights, I had to spend $2,500 within four months of the account opening. I met this spending requirement on my statement that closed on June 10. I met the requirement in about three-and-a-half months. Over that time period, I kept track of how much I had spent and how much more I had to go using my Citi online account. When I was sure that I had spent $2,500, I tucked the card away and moved my spending over to another card.

The Terms and Conditions for this card state, “Please allow 6-8 weeks after purchase requirements have been met to receive your certificate.” I received mine after only four weeks.

On July 12, I received two separate emails from Hilton HHonors that each contained the following e-certificate. Each certificate is good for one weekend night stay at select Hilton hotels.

Interestingly, the certificates were issued on July 3 but were not sent to me until July 12. They expire one year after the date of issue — July 3, 2014 in my case.

Because you earn two one-night certificates, you don’t have to use them consecutively or even at the same property.

I plan to use my free nights at top-tier Category 10 Hilton hotels that can go for up to $1,000 a night, so that the card can give me a little taste of luxury I otherwise could never afford.

In addition to the certificates, I have earned about 8,400 Hilton points by spending $2,800 on the card at its base earning rate of 3 Hilton points per dollar. This is actually enough points for a free night at a Category 1 hotel and almost enough for a night at a Category 2 hotel.


It took me a total of five months to receive the biggest perk that the Citi Hilton Reserve offers–two free weekend nights at Hilton hotels across the globe.

The only question is: Where am I going to redeem my two nights? Any suggestions?

Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card with Two Free Nights worldwide at top tier Hiltons after spending $2,500 in four months

Application Link: Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card


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