Hilton is Having a Limited Time Sale on Points — But Is It a Good Deal?
If you’ve spent much time reading about credit cards, you’ve probably heard about things such as “travel hacking” and finding “sweet spots” for your points and miles. Whether accrued via credit card rewards or through various loyalty programs, savvy travelers can score some great redemptions using the points they’ve earned. But does it ever make sense to buy points directly instead of “earning” them? Well, thanks to a current Hilton offer, I had the chance to explore that question for myself.
For a limited time — until July 29th, 2021 or until the points “sell out” — Hilton Honors members can purchase up to 80,000 points and receive bonus points equal to their purchase. So, if you purchase the maximum 80,000 points for $800, you’ll actually receive 160,000 points with this promotion. Honestly, I’m not 100% sure if this deal is targeted or is open to all members, so be sure to check your email or log into your Hilton Honors account to look for this offer.
As this sale rate implies, Hilton normally sells Honors points at a cost of 1¢ per point. This is near-universally considered a poor exchange rate. However, at a cost of 0.5¢ per point with this offer, the cost does come in a bit under The Points Guy’s estimated value of 0.6$ per point. That said, this value can fluctuate and will vary greatly depending on your redemption. As I’ve looked at random properties, I’ve noticed huge disparities in point value, with some properties that fetch hundreds of dollars a night costing the same number of points as ones that are far cheaper cashwise.
I should note that this isn’t the first time Hilton has had such an offer. Moreover, the last such sale was only a couple of months ago. Nevertheless, I figured it was worth exploring now as the topic will likely be relevant for subsequent sales.
If you do take Hilton up on this offer, the good news is that your points will likely arrive in your account instantly, although Hilton does warn that it could take up to 48 hours. The instantaneous delivery was helpful for me as I was ready to book right away. In fact, an email alerting me to the sale came just in time as I was stressing about the best option for booking an upcoming hotel stay. The story of how I combined this deal with my existing Hilton Honors points and a handful of Amex Membership Rewards points is one for another day — but, in all, I was happy with the outcome and was thankful that this option fell into my lap.
By the way, if you are looking to rack up more Hilton points, there are a few ways to do that at the moment. For one, the Hilton Honors American Express card currently offers a welcome bonus of 100,000 Hilton Honors points when you spend $1,000 on the card in your first three months. With that offer, you’ll also earn up to $100 in statement credits when you make eligible Hilton purchases in your first year. Plus, the card has no annual fee to worry about. Elsewhere, it’s worth remembering that you can score Hilton Honors points by linking your account to Lyft, earning points with each ride — although you’ll now need to choose between earning Hilton Honors points and Delta SkyMiles following a recent update to the app’s policies.
So is this a good deal overall? Well, that depends on quite a few factors. Personally, I’d advise that you first research possible redemptions you’d want to make in the short term before deciding to buy points to bank. In my case, the purchased points were in my account for less than five minutes as I already knew exactly how I wanted to use and what value I’d be getting from them before I hit “purchase.” Given the uncertainty surrounding point currencies, this definitely feels like the best course of action — but, of course, it’s ultimately up to you. Either way, if you do plan on taking advantage of this sale, be sure to do so before July 29th.