Old Nov 1, 17, 1:42 pm
  #142  
pinniped
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: MCI
Programs: AA Gold 1MM, AS MVP, UA Silver, WN A-List, Marriott LT Titanium, HH Diamond
Posts: 46,582
I'm not sure why all the hate.

The Ascend card is a worthy replacement for the Reserve. No FX fees and the free weekend night were the two things most important to people. Same Gold benefit and $40k Diamond benefit.

The weekend night threshold bumps up a bit, but the card throws in 10 free lounge passes. If you don't already have a lounge membership and fly 4-5 international trips a year that are likely to have a longer layover, that's a nice perk to have without needing to jump into a $450 card.

Aspire is a whole new option that may or may not be right for you. Amex isn't going to get millions of new applicants that suddenly flood Hiltons with new Diamond room-nights. (They'd be happy if they did, but I seriously doubt it works that way.) Besides, as others have pointed out...properties know their frequent guests. Those people still get prioritized over CC elites.

Every card issuer has the $450 card now. The real target audience for the Aspire is someone who already stays at Hiltons or is willing to start doing so fairly regularly (e.g. elite-level travel). Otherwise, it doesn't really make sense for most people to add this card. The thought of adding it just to do the 1 resort stay, 1 Waldorf stay, and 1 free night is totally a Flyertalker behavior , not something tons of people are going to do.
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