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Back in 2017, Hilton dumped its traditional award chart and moved to a dynamic pricing system. Although there was no set pricing on standard award nights, the maximum number of Hilton points required for a reward night didn't climb above 95,000 points. Then, in 2019, that cap was raised to 120,000 points per night for a couple of properties.
This leads us to some good news and bad news. The bad? Hilton recently, and quietly, upped the maximum price on a standard award night to 150,000 Hilton Honors points. That's a lot of points for one night! And the good news? It seems to be unique to the incredible Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi—at least for now.
150,000 Hilton points for the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi
The Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi currently clocks in at 150,000 Hilton points a night for a standard award room. Of course, at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi, a standard room is an incredible villa in the Maldives complete with a private pool. Earlier this month, a standard reward night at this property maxed out at 120,000 points.
Fortunately, the devaluation seems to only be on this specific property. But, if history repeats itself (which it usually does), the Los Cabos Pedregal could follow soon after. 150,000 Hilton points for a single night would make some of these aspirational properties nearly impossible to stay for many Hilton travelers—hardcore points and miles fanatics included.
Thankfully, besides these two Hilton properties, standard award nights still top out at 95,000 points—at least for now.
Current Hilton Credit Card Offers
- Hilton Honors American Express Card: Earn 80,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points
- Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card: Earn 150,000 Hilton Honors points
- The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card: Earn 130,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points
- Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card: Earn 130,000 Hilton Honors points
Options for Booking the Ithaafushi
So what if you have your heart set on staying at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi? Unfortunately, the options aren't great when using points or cash. The cash price of this property is consistently well over $1,000 a night and upwards of $3,000. For one night! You're going to shell out a lot regardless if you plan on staying several nights in the Maldives.
There are still a few ways to help cut the costs down quite significantly.
You can see from the calendar above that nights run anywhere from $1,500 all the way up to $3,000. So, even at 150,000 points per night, you're getting over 1 cent per Hilton Honors point in value. That's better than the average of 0.58¢ per Hilton point that AwardWallet members have averaged on recent redemptions.
Hilton Free Weekend Night Certificate
The Hilton Free Weekend Night Reward is a fantastic option in a situation like this. As the points value of the certificate is uncapped it can be used at almost all properties in the Hilton portfolio. There is a small list of hotels excluded, which you can find here. But for the most part, it's redeemable for the majority of properties, and that includes the Waldorf Maldives Ithaafushi.
As the name implies, the certificate is only usable for stays over the weekend. Hilton considers Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as weekend nights. However, as part of its COVID-19 response, any weekend free night certificates issued in 2021 can be used any night of the week, not just weekends. Once you confirm availability, you'll need to call Hilton at 1-800-HHONORS to book your night.
Three Hilton cards offer cardmembers a way to get a Hilton Free Weekend Night:
- The Hilton Aspire currently comes with a free weekend night certificate when you open a new account and then a new certificate annually. Cardmembers can earn a second free weekend night certificate when they spend $60,000 on the card within a calendar year.
- The Hilton Surpass also has the option to earn a free night certificate. Cardmembers must spend $15,000 within a calendar year to qualify.
- Finally, the Hilton Business Card offers cardholders the option to earn two-weekend free night certificates. You'll earn one after spending $15,000 within a calendar year and another if you spend a total of $60,000 in a calendar year.
Fifth Night Free Perk
Utilizing Hilton's 5th-night free perk, which can be stacked with the free weekend night certificate, is another way to save a chunk of points when redeeming a stay at the Waldorf Ithaafushi. In order to be eligible for the 5th-night free perk, you must have elite status with Hilton.
Luckily, earning Hilton status is incredibly easy. All you need is any one of their co-branded credit cards from American Express. Even the $0 annual fee Hilton Amex (Rates & Fees) comes with complimentary Silver status. That's enough to activate the 5th-night free perk. Enrollment is required for select Amex benefits.
Visiting the Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi already cost a ton of Hilton Honors points. Now that the cost of a standard reward night has been increased to 150,000 points per night, a multi-night stay at the Ithaafushi is even more unattainable for many travelers. And you'll want to stay several days as the boat transfer alone to get to the resort will run you $650 per adult ($325 for children). With some planning, you can use a Hilton Free Weekend Night Reward and the Hilton 5th-night free perk to extend your stay.
This new information is a bit discouraging as it's quite foreboding of more to come. If you have been eyeballing a high-end Hilton resort like the Los Cabos Pedregal, it may be time to book it sooner rather than later.
Overall, and most fortunately, Hilton still offers amazing value at many properties. You can check some of them out with our list of Hilton's 15 best properties bookable with points.
For rates and fees of the cards mentioned in this post, please visit the following links: Hilton Honors American Express Card (Rates & Fees)
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