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-   -   American Express Announces Two New Hilton Credit Cards (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/hilton-hilton-honors/1875140-american-express-announces-two-new-hilton-credit-cards.html)

keano016 Nov 6, 17 3:05 pm


Originally Posted by HonorsRepresentative (Post 29027525)


From what I've seen in e-mails, it seems that Hilton is automatically enrolling us in credit cards, yes? I received notification that I am now an "Ascend" cardholder, but the old card didn't have an annual fee, but the Ascend card is $95/year... do we have a choice on this or do you waive the first year of fee at least?
American Express has purchased the Hilton Honors Cards from Citi and those cards will transition to American Express cards on January 30th. The email Hilton sent out last week outlined the following: Citi Hilton Honors Reserve Cards ($95 annual fee) will become Ascend Cards on January 30th and also carry a $95 annual fee. Citi Hilton Honors Signature Cards (no annual fee) will transfer to Hilton Honors American Express Cards with no annual fee.



Thanks,
Lauren

What happens if we downgrade from the $95 to the no fee citi card between now and Jan 30th?

wwongo Nov 6, 17 3:26 pm

I have to agree that some on here are overblowing the effect of the new card on Diamond status. Most of the benefits of Diamond status are not capacity limited. It doesn’t hurt you if someone else gets better internet or more points for a stay. The worry about lounge overcrowding is more relevant but even then I think it’s exaggerated.

I am one of those dreaded travelers that travels on my own dime for various reasons other than to earn a living (my business for earning a living rarely involves travel). I actually have earned gold status on stays or nights for the last couple of years and I think I have visited a lounge once. I rarely stay at a hotel that has a lounge and when I do it is usually closed on weekends. So even if I got diamond status I would not be crowding a lounge.

The comparison to airport lounges which I do frequent, is not very relevant. Everyone, including families with children, will use a lounge if they have access to it simply because it seems like a better choice than sitting at the gate. This is just not the same at a hotel. There is one airport choice but there are better choices for most families with kids in the Hilton portfolio. Even if they are at a hotel with a lounge, they also have a hotel room to hang out it, so the most they are likely to do is pick up a few bags of chips and cokes and leave. It’s easy for Hilton to add more bags of chips and cokes to a lounge without hampering your experience. I'm past the young kids stage but even then I would rather hang out in my room or be out sight seeing.

I may get the card because I am a flyertalk type and I can make it pay but really most average people who may have bitten on the Chase Sapphire Reserve are not going to have the stomach for another $450 annual fee. I know my spouse does not and that is with living with a flyertalker.

Even if I get the card the only time I am likely to visit a lounge might be on a once a year trip to Europe, the rest of the year I’ll just be earning more points at my usual Hilton Garden Inn and I promise it won’t bother you. I trust that Hilton and American Express will do what is in their best interests, so I don’t worry about whether or not it is a bad move for them. If it is, it will go away like the 50% point rebate on the Business Platinum.

Eujeanie Nov 6, 17 3:40 pm

Lauren, is there going to be any sign-up bonuses with any of these cards? Or just a transition?

How about Aspire, since that is a new product?

For the free weekend night stay, will that have to be a new reservation, or if we are already booked for a standard weekend night room can we sub out the paid stay for the free stay?

And thanks for keeping on top of all our questions.

CalvaryMike Nov 6, 17 4:38 pm


Originally Posted by jamesteroh (Post 29006279)
Just make sure you fly Delta a lot if you use it for $50 gift cards since you can only apply one gift card per flight with delta

I've used three gift cards for a flight on Delta earlier this year.

ctbarron Nov 6, 17 5:54 pm

1. The one question I have that I didn't yet see answered is what happens if you already have 5 AMEX credit cards, and the converted one pushes you to 6? I suspect this is an AMEX question and not a HH one.

2. Thanks to Lauren for continuing to answer questions.

3. I'd rather do the $40k spend on the Surpass/Ascend for Diamond.

Cathay Dragon 666 Nov 7, 17 3:08 am


Originally Posted by ctbarron (Post 29028145)
1. The one question I have that I didn't yet see answered is what happens if you already have 5 AMEX credit cards, and the converted one pushes you to 6? I suspect this is an AMEX question and not a HH one.

2. Thanks to Lauren for continuing to answer questions.

3. I'd rather do the $40k spend on the Surpass/Ascend for Diamond.

1) I'm not sure the total accounts you can have with AMEX, but I did have an AMEX person told me the amount of "brand-name" AMEX card one can have is 4.

3) Why? If you have a AMEX SPG that's 40,000 points, that's 4 free nights at SPG category 4-5 properties, which averages out to $150-250 a night, $600-$1000 USD. Hilton points are always less in value. I don't understand why people would spend massively on any other hotel card than SPG one.

jamesteroh Nov 7, 17 7:30 am


Originally Posted by Cathay Dragon 666 (Post 29029384)
1) I'm not sure the total accounts you can have with AMEX, but I did have an AMEX person told me the amount of "brand-name" AMEX card one can have is 4.

3) Why? If you have a AMEX SPG that's 40,000 points, that's 4 free nights at SPG category 4-5 properties, which averages out to $150-250 a night, $600-$1000 USD. Hilton points are always less in value. I don't understand why people would spend massively on any other hotel card than SPG one.

I was told by a few people that the max Am Ex cards you can have is five and I was told by others it was four. At one time I had five (a business and personal version of the Delta Platinum and Reserve cards and a free Hilton card). Maybe it's a YMMV situation depending on the amount of credit you have with Am Ex and your history with them or maybe I was allowed five at that time because two were business cards. It says in the fine print of the one email that not all Citi accounts will be accepted by Am Ex. So if one is at the max for Am Ex cards they probably won't get a new card. Am Ex also has a blacklist where if you've ever defaulted on an Am Ex card you are supposedly on the black list and will never get a card with them (even if it was a bankruptcy from 30 years ago) unless you make an arrangement to pay the debt back even though it was legally discharged.

I agree there is a lot better ways to spend $40K especially now that you can get diamond status for $450. If someone puts $50K on a Hyatt card now they can get pretty high status with Hyatt.

I'm hoping now that Hilton is selling status for $450 a year, Hyatt is giving it out with $50K credit card spend that after the SPG/Marriott merger is final they will offer a similar way to get Platinum through credit card spend. I would gladly put $50K a year on a credit card for SPG or Marriott Platinum, especially if the Delta crossover program is still in place

BOSOGG Nov 7, 17 8:16 am


Originally Posted by HonorsRepresentative (Post 29003041)
Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card
• $250 Hilton resort statement credit
• $100 on-property credit at Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts and Conrad Hotels & Resorts when booking the exclusive Aspire Card package

Description implies $100 on-property credit may be applied exclusively to Waldorf and Conrad Resorts.

Is the $250 Hilton resort statement credit limited to only "Hilton" Resorts, or can it be applied to entire "Hilton Family" of Resorts, including Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, and Curio Resorts?

retiredfromhilton Nov 7, 17 8:43 am


Originally Posted by kb9522 (Post 29026654)
I'm not suggesting that they will. I'm simply illustrating how little one has to earn to be able to afford the card.



Except that middle class leisure traveler is bringing an entire family, possibly including (sometimes young) children. And the next day it will be a different family, and so on. But what it really comes down to is the lower expectations by these people... It allows Hilton to get away with poorer service, fewer amenities, etc. Once they realize they can save a few bucks, you think they won't?



I only used the lounge examples as an illustration of what happens when you open the floodgates. The value of access to those lounges goes through the floor. Same thing here, Diamond will be even less valuable when everyone has it.


The results from Hilton's ongoing liberality in status matching other programs' top tier status and the company's forecasting suggests that the risk of crowding at lounges, using up allocations of rooms available for upgrade/late check out, etc comes less from families traveling on leisure than from business people who stay 10-15 times per year. There are a lot of them in the US and they do not currently qualify for gold or diamond membership. The other characteristic which makes this group a potential threat to the availability of perks is that they tend to stay in the cities and at the same properties as existing Diamond members.

pretzlaff Nov 7, 17 10:12 am

I am an example of why this really won't matter much.

We are 'casual' travelers and use IHG in the States and Hilton 'overseas' for the lounges. We take about 2 trips to Asia per year and 2 trips to Europe per year.

I status matched from IHG to diamond last year. The mattress run to keep it after March of next year would have been thousands of dollars. My plan was to simply pay for executive/ lounge rooms from then on. With maybe 20 nights per year, that would have been about $1000.

So, for me, the $450 is a pretty good deal as sort of a pre-paid lounge access. It will also encourage us to stay at more Hiltons.

My lounge use would never have been that great in the grand scheme of things, and I probably would have been paying cash anyway for access. So, all in all, I will get the card but have very little differential impact on the lounges.

I am probably the customer that they intended for this product.

sdsearch Nov 7, 17 11:19 am


Originally Posted by BOSOGG (Post 29030268)
Description implies $100 on-property credit may be applied exclusively to Waldorf and Conrad Resorts.

Is the $250 Hilton resort statement credit limited to only "Hilton" Resorts, or can it be applied to entire "Hilton Family" of Resorts, including Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, and Curio Resorts?

Already asked and answered upthread. There is a link upthread of all the Hilton family Resort properties (I think there are 70 or so of them). They are in various brands (that's why we've been discussing a DT Anaheim resort in recent posts). Some have "Resort" in the name, I think some don't. I'm not even sure if all properties that do have "Resort" in the name are included on that list. The resort credit will only work on those properties on that list, no others.

sdsearch Nov 7, 17 11:31 am

Lauren, a question on the transition time from Citi HH to Amex HH:

I though it was previously announced that the Citi HH cards would stop functioning after January 30, and that people would have the Amex replacement HH card in hand by January 30.

But someone in the Citi forum just posted a snail mail letter they received from Citi, which said in part:
"If your account is closed or is not in good standing as of January 26, 2018, your account will not be transferred to American Express."
I don't see how Amex can have replacement HH cards (for Citi HH accounts) in everyone's hands by the January 30 if they aren't even going to get the list from Citi until January 26.

So does this letter from Citi mean that Amex HH cards (replacing Citi HH cards) may not arrive until February? :confused:

Please clarify. Thanks a lot.

BOSOGG Nov 7, 17 11:32 am


Originally Posted by sdsearch (Post 29031131)
Already asked and answered upthread. There is a link upthread of all the Hilton family Resort properties (I think there are 70 or so of them). They are in various brands (that's why we've been discussing a DT Anaheim resort in recent posts). Some have "Resort" in the name, I think some don't. I'm not even sure if all properties that do have "Resort" in the name are included on that list. The resort credit will only work on those properties on that list, no others.

I have seen mention of Resort List, but have not been able to locate link to actual list. Can you point me to actual link? Appreciate it.

knopfler Nov 7, 17 11:56 am


Originally Posted by Cathay Dragon 666 (Post 29029384)
3) Why? If you have a AMEX SPG that's 40,000 points, that's 4 free nights at SPG category 4-5 properties, which averages out to $150-250 a night, $600-$1000 USD. Hilton points are always less in value. I don't understand why people would spend massively on any other hotel card than SPG one.

Hilton points are less in value compared to SPG, but I think a lot of people who get diamond status through the Hilton card are getting six HH points per dollar. 240k Hilton points plus diamond status is a comparable value to 40k SPG points.

jerry a. laska Nov 7, 17 11:59 am


Originally Posted by BOSOGG (Post 29031206)
I have seen mention of Resort List, but have not been able to locate link to actual list. Can you point me to actual link? Appreciate it.

See post 161:
https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/29005693-post161.html

birdiedouble Nov 7, 17 12:09 pm


Originally Posted by BOSOGG (Post 29031206)
I have seen mention of Resort List, but have not been able to locate link to actual list. Can you point me to actual link? Appreciate it.

I believe this is the list:

http://www3.hilton.com/en/resorts/index.html#

BOSOGG Nov 7, 17 12:23 pm


Originally Posted by jerry a. laska (Post 29031351)

Thank you


Originally Posted by birdiedouble (Post 29031413)

Thank You

So this confirms that the $250 Hilton resort statement credit does include Waldorf, Conrad and Curio Resorts. thanks for providing link.

sdsearch Nov 7, 17 1:37 pm


Originally Posted by birdiedouble (Post 29031413)

Thanks. I've created a wiki for this thread, and put that link in there, so it won't require searching to find it in the future.

Anyone who has wiki editing capability who feels any other often-asked information should be added there, feel free. We're getting a lot of information in this thread, but the more posts we get after that, the harder it gets to find, without being in a wikipost.

HonorsRepresentative Nov 7, 17 3:28 pm

What happens if we downgrade from the $95 to the no fee citi card between now and Jan 30th?
If you have the no-fee Citi Hilton Honors Card on January 30, 2018, you will receive the no-fee Hilton Honors American Express Card.


Is there going to be any sign-up bonuses with any of these cards? Or just a transition? How about Aspire, since that is a new product?
While we canít share specifics about any upcoming bonuses for this Card, can share that in general our approach is to offer a mix of not only competitive introductory offers for potential new Card Members, but also a range of premium benefits and services that not only attract new customers but also sustain long term relationships and loyalty among our large Card Member base.


For the free weekend night stay, will that have to be a new reservation, or if we are already booked for a standard weekend night room can we sub out the paid stay for the free stay?
A Weekend Night Reward may be combined with other Hilton or Free Night promotions in market and may be added to existing paid or Reward stays.


The one question I have that I didn't yet see answered is what happens if you already have 5 AMEX credit cards, and the converted one pushes you to 6? I suspect this is an AMEX question and not a HH one.

Yes, please contact Amex about this question.


Is the $250 Hilton resort statement credit limited to only "Hilton" Resorts, or can it be applied to entire "Hilton Family" of Resorts, including Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, and Curio Resorts?
Looks like you all referenced this already, but just confirming that the resort credit can be applied to the resorts in our portfolio as shown on www.hilton.com/resorts.


Thank you!
Lauren

restlessinRNO Nov 7, 17 4:31 pm


Originally Posted by sdsearch (Post 29031923)
Thanks. I've created a wiki for this thread, and put that link in there, so it won't require searching to find it in the future.

Anyone who has wiki editing capability who feels any other often-asked information should be added there, feel free. We're getting a lot of information in this thread, but the more posts we get after that, the harder it gets to find, without being in a wikipost.

Great idea. Thank you. :)

Bicoastal Yokel Nov 7, 17 4:54 pm


Originally Posted by sdsearch (Post 29031923)
Thanks. I've created a wiki for this thread, and put that link in there, so it won't require searching to find it in the future.

Anyone who has wiki editing capability who feels any other often-asked information should be added there, feel free. We're getting a lot of information in this thread, but the more posts we get after that, the harder it gets to find, without being in a wikipost.

I would probably add that the Resort Credit can be used to pay for the room, and that the airline credit works the same way as the airline credit on other AMEX cards (and maybe links to the various airline AMEX wikis).

StangGT909 Nov 7, 17 8:54 pm


Originally Posted by Bicoastal Yokel (Post 29032682)
I would probably add that the Resort Credit can be used to pay for the room, and that the airline credit works the same way as the airline credit on other AMEX cards (and maybe links to the various airline AMEX wikis).



Is that confirmed that you can use it to pay for the room?
I wouldnít think itís possible for the card to distinguish items on a bill vs the actual $ charge but it just seems too good to be true

Could you suppose stay at the Hilton Bentley on points for one night and say itís $250 for the second night , would Amex the $250?

Bicoastal Yokel Nov 7, 17 9:49 pm


Originally Posted by StangGT909 (Post 29033529)
Is that confirmed that you can use it to pay for the room?
I wouldn’t think it’s possible for the card to distinguish items on a bill vs the actual $ charge but it just seems too good to be true
?

It was confirmed in post # 401 of this thread:


Originally Posted by HonorsRepresentative (Post 29027525)
The Hilton Resort statement credit includes all charges made on the Aspire card, room rate included.


Originally Posted by StangGT909 (Post 29033529)

Could you suppose stay at the Hilton Bentley on points for one night and say it’s $250 for the second night , would Amex the $250?

I would think that as long as there’s a balance on the folio and it’s charged on the Aspire card, it would trigger the credit.

Don.Majik.Juan Nov 8, 17 7:43 am

Does anyone know if a person will be able to have both the Aspire and Ascend cards? I'm tempted to signup for the current 125k point bonus with the Surplus but have a feeling the Aspire card will have a better sign-up bonus.

jamesteroh Nov 8, 17 8:17 am

I wonder if Am Ex will even offer a sign up bonus on the Aspire. Seeing all the benefits it provides and it is giving diamond status away for only $450 a year I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't.

In a way I'm hoping they don't offer a bonus the way they are devaluing points. I'd rather not get a bonus for getting the Ascend cards and have them stop giving out all these bonuses and make the points valuable for people who earn them through hotel stays.

jimmac Nov 8, 17 12:00 pm


Originally Posted by jimmac (Post 29021773)
When will you offer the same cards with the same benefits or something very similar in Canada????

Just bumping and hoping Lauren will answer my question.

lixiaojuventus Nov 8, 17 12:32 pm


Originally Posted by HonorsRepresentative (Post 29027525)


So you are reading it to include the base room rate, too, and I'm reading it to include incremental spend only.

The Hilton Resort statement credit includes all charges made on the Aspire card, room rate included.

Best news I've heard about the Aspire card! ^^^

ctbarron Nov 8, 17 1:10 pm


Originally Posted by knopfler (Post 29031330)
Hilton points are less in value compared to SPG, but I think a lot of people who get diamond status through the Hilton card are getting six HH points per dollar. 240k Hilton points plus diamond status is a comparable value to 40k SPG points.

This. Cost roughly equal to Aspire.

HonorsRepresentative Nov 8, 17 2:49 pm

When will you offer the same cards with the same benefits or something very similar in Canada????
The new Amex cards are only available to U.S. cardholders, but I've passed the feedback re: international card offers along to the team.


Thank you,
Lauren

TTT103 Nov 9, 17 8:27 am

Lauren:

With the Ascend card, will additional cardholders be able to share the 10 annual Priority Passes, or are they only available for the primary cardholder? If they can be shared, must the primary cardholder be present at a PP Lounge, or can the additional cardholders use them on their own.

Thank you

Travel Fan Nov 9, 17 1:19 pm

Diamond Status on Aspire Card Question for Lauren
 
Hi Lauren,

I have a grandfathered HHonors account that includes my spouse. If I upgrade to the Aspire card, will both of us receive the Diamond Status for traveling and use? I understand the other benefits are tied to the use of the card and I would need to use the card to obtain those benefits.

Thanks,

Travel Fan

sethb Nov 9, 17 10:07 pm


Originally Posted by Eujeanie (Post 29009042)
I know some of you have had other cards that give the airline credit, so can you please explain some things to me...

Is it cumulative? Say I'm in Y and I want an extra cocktail (already get one free with AS) and something to eat, so a $15 charge. Do that several times throughout the year. Is it at the end of the year that they cover all these charges I have made? (say they add up to $100 or so). Or do they cancel them out every month until I reach $250?

Generally, credit shows up the next day on my account.

DavefromSt.Vital Nov 9, 17 10:47 pm

Re: Canadian cards. Air Canada is dropping Aeroplan as their loyalty program in 2020. Over a million Canadians have fancy Aeroplan affiliated credit cards.

Most of us are looking to move.

mudpuppy Nov 10, 17 8:45 am

Is there any word on when the Aspire will be available? I'm debating taking the 125,000 point offer on the Surpass/Ascend, but I believe I wouldn't be able to upgrade it to Aspire for a year.

ekwang Nov 10, 17 3:04 pm

Hilton Aspire
 

Originally Posted by pugsley21 (Post 29002170)
Looks like someone is getting a shiny, new Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card. :D

Yeah, my Citi Hilton Reserve turn into the AMX Hilton Ascend at $95 per year, but if the Diamond Status does not get super devalued, as a person who enjoy staying at Hilton properties, upgrading to the Aspire would make sense to me. My question though, is would they need to do a hard pull to upgrade from from Ascend to Aspire even if I currently have Platinum and Delta Reserve?

Eric

smmrfld Nov 10, 17 5:16 pm


Originally Posted by Travel Fan (Post 29041011)
Hi Lauren,

I have a grandfathered HHonors account that includes my spouse. If I upgrade to the Aspire card, will both of us receive the Diamond Status for traveling and use? I understand the other benefits are tied to the use of the card and I would need to use the card to obtain those benefits.

Thanks,

Travel Fan

If this tracks with previous practice, such as with Lifetime Diamond, both holders of the Mutual Fund Account should receive identical status. I don't believe it is possible to split one account into two different status levels.

farnorthtrader Nov 10, 17 7:21 pm


Originally Posted by ekwang (Post 29045799)
Yeah, my Citi Hilton Reserve turn into the AMX Hilton Ascend at $95 per year, but if the Diamond Status does not get super devalued, as a person who enjoy staying at Hilton properties, upgrading to the Aspire would make sense to me. My question though, is would they need to do a hard pull to upgrade from from Ascend to Aspire even if I currently have Platinum and Delta Reserve?

Eric

In my experience, they never do a hard pull for upgrades. Heck, they don't do a hard pull for new applications some of the time.

HawkeyeFlyer Nov 11, 17 8:30 am


Originally Posted by ekwang (Post 29045799)
Yeah, my Citi Hilton Reserve turn into the AMX Hilton Ascend at $95 per year, but if the Diamond Status does not get super devalued, as a person who enjoy staying at Hilton properties, upgrading to the Aspire would make sense to me. My question though, is would they need to do a hard pull to upgrade from from Ascend to Aspire even if I currently have Platinum and Delta Reserve?

Eric

I am finding it hard to imagine any scenario where Diamond status is not further devalued by this credit card. You can get the card for free (actually they pay you) after the credits
So basically anyone who want Diamond and has decent credit can get it

diver858 Nov 11, 17 10:00 am

Check November Surpass statements
 
3 double-sided pages, explaining how the Surpass Card will become Ascend, annual "membership" increases to $95, effective February 2, 2018.

I am personally not a fan of the change:
1. Not worth spending $15k on the card for a free weekend night
2. 500 point bonus for booking with the card goes away - removes 15k+ points per year for those of us who earn Diamond on stays
3. Already have unlimited PP Select with Citi Prestige

Hoping for a generous upgrade offer to Aspire in the new year.

Seabilly Nov 11, 17 10:53 am

I have the Citi card so looks like I'll be getting the Ascend card in January.

Depending on how the 10 free Priority Pass Lounge passes work will depend on whether I keep the Ascend or cancel it immediately. If those are something only I can use, they are useless to me since I already have unlimited passes via another card. If I am able to share them I'll probably keep the card and give the passes to my team members who don't have any airport memberships.

As for the Aspire card, I already qualified for Diamond next year which will be my 6th year as Diamond. I'll evaluate whether to get the Aspire sometime the end of next year if I'm short for 2019 (or will take advantage of the one time Diamond bump whichever makes the most sense then).


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