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Old May 28, 16, 8:48 am   -   Wikipost
FlyerTalk Forums Thread Wiki: Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card
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Last edit by: muji
This thread is a continuation of: Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card (2012 - 2015)

5/1/16 working link: https://www.citi.com/credit-cards/cr...s-reserve-card

From the app page:
"Weekend Night Certificates offer is not available if you have had a Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card account that was opened or closed in the past 24 months."


Quote:
When will I receive my free nights?
Some datapoints indicate that the certificates are emailed ~7 days after the statement in which the spend is met, but others datapoints indicate that it may take 1-2 additional statement cycles before they're actually sent.

Quote:
How long do I have to use the free nights?
The certificates expire 12 months from the date that they're emailed to you. Your stay must be completed on or before this expiration date.

Quote:
Do I need to print the certificates and take them with me?
Yes. Some people say they haven't been asked for them, but it's much better to have them and not need them than to need them and not have them.

Quote:
Can the free weekend certs be redeemed online?
No, you have to call the HHonors department to book them. Even regular Hilton reservations cannot book them, although they can transfer you to the right department.


Quote:
so the 2-browser trick is dead. can we still apply two HH Reserve card every 65 days, with same HH #, and get four certificates?
Several people have reported successfully churning this card, and receiving the certificates for both cards. Closing one card before applying for another doesn't appear to be required.

You can still get as many as you want of the Citi Hilton 50k cards (except that CITI only allows two cards of any type every 60-65 days).all 50k card offers without 18 month language dead as of 7/5/15

Quote:
Can you get the anniversary free night bonus without paying the annual fee, or do you get the free night bonus only if you hit $10,000 in charges AND renew?
This seems to be YMMV. Some people have reported not getting it until well after their AF payment is due, while others have reported getting it in time to cancel and have their AF refunded. More data points on this are needed.

Quote:
Terms and conditions for the free nights
Friday, Saturday & Sunday night, and I don't think there are any blackout nights (beyond the normal HHonors program rules). Here is the description from the Cert as well as the T&C's:

Description: You've received this reward certificate because you've met the purchase requirements with your Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card. This reward is valid for one complimentary weekend night for a standard room at participating hotels worldwide, subject to availability. This reward is not valid at All-Inclusive or Distinctive properties and cannot be combined with the 5th Night Free benefit or other promotions. Please visit HHonors.com/weekendcertificate to see a list of excluded properties.

GENERAL TERMS AND CONDITIONS
As with any HHonors Reward, this Reward Certificate is subject to all HHonors Terms & Conditions on participation, use, and redemption, posted at http://hhonors1.hilton.com/en_US/hh/terms.do. The hotel stay received with this Hotel Reward Certificate shall be treated as a Hotel Reward Stay, as defined in the Terms & Conditions, except Points & Money, Premium Room and Room Upgrade Rewards cannot be used with this Certificate.

HOTEL REWARD TERMS AND CONDITIONS
1. Reward Certificate is not transferable after issued and may be redeemed only by the individual named thereon, consistent with HHonors Terms & Conditions. If a person other than the individual named on the Reward Certificate attempts to redeem it, the Certificate will be deemed void and accommodations will be denied.
2. Reward Certificate may not be sold, auctioned, bartered, brokered or purchased except with the express written consent of Hilton HHonors. Any Reward Certificate obtained in this manner by any person or entity will be considered to be fraudulently obtained and will be deemed void if transferred for cash or other consideration. Altered Reward Certificates are void and will not be honored.
3. Reward Certificate may not be combined with other certificates, discounts, packages or promotional offers, or Hotel Reward stays beyond Standard Room Rewards, unless otherwise specified in writing by Hilton HHonors.
4. Reward Certificate cannot be redeemed for cash, prizes or credit. Reward Certificate is not exchangeable.
5. Reward Certificate will not be replaced, reissued or credited if lost, stolen or otherwise destroyed.
6. Reward Certificate is void if copied, prohibited or restricted by law.
7. HHonors members will not earn points or miles for Hotel Reward stays, unless otherwise stated on the Reward Certificate.
8. Reward Certificate expires on the date noted on the face of the Reward Certificate.
9. Reward Certificate must be redeemed in strict accordance with the procedures specified on the certificate.
10. For the purpose of Certificate redemption, a weekend night is defined as a Friday, Saturday or Sunday night, unless specified otherwise on the Reward Certificate.
11. Reward Certificate applies to the room rate and tax of one standard room at a participating hotel and as further provided on the Certificate. A "Standard room" is as defined by the hotel. Any tax liability incurred in connection with the receipt and/or use of this Certificate, including, but not limited to, local or city occupancy taxes, or individual income tax is the sole responsibility of the user. Incidental charges are the responsibility of the user.
12. Reward Certificate usage is limited to Double Occupancy. Additional occupants, age 19 and above, are subject to the standard extra person charges.
13. Reward Certificate reservations must be guaranteed with a credit card. Some hotels may require a deposit in lieu of a credit card guarantee. Deposits cannot be waived for Reward Certificate reservations. Reward Certificate reservations that are cancelled outside of the time frame set by the hotel's individual cancellation policy will be charged one night's room and tax at the hotel's minimum rate for that date.
14. Reward Certificate is valid for the number of nights noted under the description on the face of the Certificate. If the Certificate is valid for more than one night, all nights must be used and the Certificate redeemed for a single stay that includes up to all Certificate nights. The Certificate cannot be broken down and/or redeemed for more than one stay. Any unused nights will be forfeited and will not be replaced or credited.
15. No credit or substitutions will be given for any Reward Certificate including those that are only partially used.
16. Promotional Rewards are for Standard Rooms only.
17. Hotel stays resulting from Reward Certificate are non-commissionable to travel agents.
18. Recipients of Reward Certificate may be required to sign a release of liability and a statement permitting the use of their name and/or photo for promotional purposes without additional compensation.

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Old Feb 2, 16, 3:51 pm   #76
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diver858 View Post
As an Hhonors Diamond, the free systemwide anniversary weekend night stay makes the card a keeper, more than justifies the AF.
Provided that you have $10000 worth of yearly spend not better served by other credit cards.
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Old Feb 2, 16, 8:14 pm   #77
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Originally Posted by hailstorm View Post
Provided that you have $10000 worth of yearly spend not better served by other credit cards.
2% cash back card means the spend earns a minimum $200. So essentially that cert is "bought" with $200, minus the value of the HH pts earned from that $10K spend.
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Old Feb 3, 16, 9:59 am   #78
  
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Originally Posted by cmlsu View Post
With the newish 18 month citi no churn language for my hilton card it states that you are not eligible for the two certs if you have opened or closed the reserve card in the previous 18 months. I opened my reserve card two years ago...I may just keep it open and apply again this year. That way, I have neither opened nor closed the account in previous 18 months haha
Yeah, the new strategy is to keep the first card open for 18 months, reapply, and then cancel the first card as soon as the new card comes in the mail. The problem with this is that, unless you get a super retention offer, you end up paying two AFs for each card you get. So those 3 HH certs, one from the 10K spend, and 2 from the sign up, costs you $95 +95 + $120 in MS fees. So a little more than $100 a night. Which if you use them at a high category location is a lot cheaper than paying the rack rate, but far from "free". But of course you also end up with @$37K HH points from the spend. Bottom line: it's no longer "free" travel, or even "Big Travel. Little Money". It's now discount travel.
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Old Feb 3, 16, 10:20 am   #79
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Happy View Post
2% cash back card means the spend earns a minimum $200. So essentially that cert is "bought" with $200, minus the value of the HH pts earned from that $10K spend.
Also the $95 AF needs to be factored in as well, so you're essentially "buying" a free weekend night for $295 (plus whatever it costs you to MS $10k if you did it that way). Still a nice discount at somewhere like the HKG Conrad or Samui.
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Old Feb 3, 16, 10:22 am   #80
  
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Originally Posted by RobertHanson View Post
Yeah, the new strategy is to keep the first card open for 18 months, reapply, and then cancel the first card as soon as the new card comes in the mail. The problem with this is that, unless you get a super retention offer, you end up paying two AFs for each card you get. So those 3 HH certs, one from the 10K spend, and 2 from the sign up, costs you $95 +95 + $120 in MS fees. So a little more than $100 a night. Which if you use them at a high category location is a lot cheaper than paying the rack rate, but far from "free". But of course you also end up with @$37K HH points from the spend. Bottom line: it's no longer "free" travel, or even "Big Travel. Little Money". It's now discount travel.
I guess what I'm forgetting is that in most cases Citi is not going to issue the cert from the 10K spend until you renew the card. So it's actually $95 + $95 + $95 + $120 =$135 a night, plus the missed opportunity 2% cash back, as Happy pointed out. Which if you are MSing the $10K is another $80 after MS fees. That $160 a night is a lot cheaper than the $475 a night for the discount rate at the London Hilton Park Lane. But only $15 less than the $175 it would cost to pay for a room at a London Holiday Inn Express.

I'd much prefer to stay at the Park Lane Hilton for $15 less than a Holiday Inn Express, but we can't begin to call it a "free night" anymore.
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Old Feb 3, 16, 2:46 pm   #81
  
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Okay, these recent posts do not assign any value to the Hilton points. You should be able to easily get $150 in value from the minimum 30,000 points generated by the $10,000 spend. Based on my redemptions to date, I would get closer to $300 in value (my redemptions have averaged 0.97 cents) from 30,000 points. Even at the base value of $150, you are only giving up $50 to the 2% cash back card. Leaving aside the gold status that you get for your renewal, you are pretty much paying a maximum of $145 for the free night, even without the 18-24 month opening and closing deal. $145 for nights at Conrad Hong Kong, Conrad Tokyo, or WA Shanghai (where I am using mine this year) is a pretty healthy discount.
If you go by my history, the 30,000 points pays for not only the lost cash back but also the annual fee, making the free night free!
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Old Feb 4, 16, 7:21 am   #82
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertHanson View Post
Yeah, the new strategy is to keep the first card open for 18 months, reapply, and then cancel the first card as soon as the new card comes in the mail. The problem with this is that, unless you get a super retention offer, you end up paying two AFs for each card you get. So those 3 HH certs, one from the 10K spend, and 2 from the sign up, costs you $95 +95 + $120 in MS fees. So a little more than $100 a night. Which if you use them at a high category location is a lot cheaper than paying the rack rate, but far from "free". But of course you also end up with @$37K HH points from the spend. Bottom line: it's no longer "free" travel, or even "Big Travel. Little Money". It's now discount travel.

True but you're eligible to have the annual fee refunded if you cancel your account within 30 days from the mailing or delivery date of the billing statement on which the fee is billed. In theory, one could pay the annual fee and hope to get the annual certificate shortly before or after. Then apply for new card and then close old and get annual fee refund...maybe.
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Old Feb 4, 16, 11:22 am   #83
  
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Originally Posted by cmlsu View Post
True but you're eligible to have the annual fee refunded if you cancel your account within 30 days from the mailing or delivery date of the billing statement on which the fee is billed. In theory, one could pay the annual fee and hope to get the annual certificate shortly before or after. Then apply for new card and then close old and get annual fee refund...maybe.
You won't get the annual cert quick enough to do that.
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Old Feb 4, 16, 3:48 pm   #84
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Originally Posted by Superorb View Post
Also the $95 AF needs to be factored in as well, so you're essentially "buying" a free weekend night for $295 (plus whatever it costs you to MS $10k if you did it that way). Still a nice discount at somewhere like the HKG Conrad or Samui.
That is why folks should really look at their future travel needs to determine what works best for them. If one has no plan to stay at HKG Conrad (a highly overrated property in my opinion, including the Exec Lounge.) or Samui, then where one could get back the "investment", or rather, in truer accounting term "dead cost" (the annual fee and the MS cost) plus the "opportunity cost" (the 2% cash back), plus the limitation of the cert could only be used for weekend stay, outside a handful of locations in the world?

In a way, the current state of hotel cards require you to do future trip planning BEFORE you decide what cards to get so to fund those future stays. You can no longer blindly get a card and think you would be able to use the perks in the future.

Last edited by Happy; Feb 4, 16 at 3:58 pm
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Old Feb 4, 16, 3:50 pm   #85
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Originally Posted by Superorb View Post
You won't get the annual cert quick enough to do that.
No, not with Citi's Reserve card based on data points on people's complaint on when they see the certs become available.
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Old Feb 4, 16, 3:55 pm   #86
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Originally Posted by RobertHanson View Post
I guess what I'm forgetting is that in most cases Citi is not going to issue the cert from the 10K spend until you renew the card. So it's actually $95 + $95 + $95 + $120 =$135 a night, plus the missed opportunity 2% cash back, as Happy pointed out. Which if you are MSing the $10K is another $80 after MS fees. That $160 a night is a lot cheaper than the $475 a night for the discount rate at the London Hilton Park Lane. But only $15 less than the $175 it would cost to pay for a room at a London Holiday Inn Express.

I'd much prefer to stay at the Park Lane Hilton for $15 less than a Holiday Inn Express, but we can't begin to call it a "free night" anymore.
Right! It is at best discount travel in the form of paying for low end price to stay at high end properties. That is the way we view it from the beginning.

BTW if you are going to London, the Staybridge is an excellent option at 30K IHG pts. It is in the 200 GBP range. Location is in a residential area very near the Vaxhall station. Easy stroll along the embankment up the County Hall area or a few bus stops to Waterloo station / Westminster Bridge. Very high rating on TA.

The big caveat is, you only achieve that kind of "good deals" when you travel to very expensive cities, and your stay would be on a weekend. There are plenty of interesting places in the world that the hotel stays are not nearly as expensive as in London.

Even Hong Kong now the formerly ridiculous $500 a night Conrad is now down to $350 thanks to the drastic cut back of tourists/visitors from Mainland China due to the political climate over there.

If you do not insist to stay at a US Chain hotel, there are actually quite a lot of decent options in Hong Kong now only cost you $250 or so, and just as good, or even better than the Conrad.
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Old Feb 5, 16, 3:52 am   #87
  
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Originally Posted by Happy View Post
In a way, the current state of hotel cards require you to do future trip planning BEFORE you decide what cards to get so to fund those future stays. You can no longer blindly get a card and think you would be able to use the perks in the future.
100% accurate. IMO, it's one of the simplest concepts but also one that seems to evade so many.
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Old Feb 13, 16, 7:23 am   #88
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Where in my HHonors account can I see the earned free nights from the CC?
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Old Feb 13, 16, 11:30 am   #89
  
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Originally Posted by RobertHanson View Post
I guess what I'm forgetting is that in most cases Citi is not going to issue the cert from the 10K spend until you renew the card. So it's actually $95 + $95 + $95 + $120 =$135 a night, plus the missed opportunity 2% cash back, as Happy pointed out. Which if you are MSing the $10K is another $80 after MS fees. That $160 a night is a lot cheaper than the $475 a night for the discount rate at the London Hilton Park Lane. But only $15 less than the $175 it would cost to pay for a room at a London Holiday Inn Express.

I'd much prefer to stay at the Park Lane Hilton for $15 less than a Holiday Inn Express, but we can't begin to call it a "free night" anymore.
Oh that is interesting. I was going to spend 10k on my card and in six months I will hit 18 month mark (the only reason I am paying the AF right now) and I will app for another one. Given this citi rule I won't even bother spending the 10k since I do not want to pay for two AFs at once. Also I needed my free night for the summer. Glad I read this before running all that money through the card.
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Old Feb 13, 16, 12:32 pm   #90
  
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Originally Posted by Red259 View Post
Oh that is interesting. I was going to spend 10k on my card and in six months I will hit 18 month mark (the only reason I am paying the AF right now) and I will app for another one. Given this citi rule I won't even bother spending the 10k since I do not want to pay for two AFs at once. Also I needed my free night for the summer. Glad I read this before running all that money through the card.
I did do all that spend for both myself and DW, so we got the 2 certs. But that was when I could do totally free MS with Redbird and T-M, neither of which work for me anymore. Now being so close to 18 months, and having already paid the AFs, we are holding on, and will reapply for new cards.

But what to do after that is a dilemma, since the cost to MS $20K is so high now. I may very well decide to cancel the old cards as soon as we get the new ones. And then cancel the new cards as soon as the sign up certs post, so as to reset the clock as soon as possible without paying a second set of AFs.

Anyone have thoughts on this?
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