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Amex just launched a new 40% bonus for transferring Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors points. During this promotion, members will receive 2,800 Hilton points for every 1,000 Membership Rewards points transferred. That's effectively a 2.8 Hilton points per Membership Rewards point now through June 15, 2021.
Transfer Bonus Offer Terms
- Transfer Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors and receive a 40% bonus
- This offer is available for transfers through June 15, 2021
- Allow up to eight weeks for the Hilton Honors bonus points to be deposited
- Bonus Points do not count towards elite tier qualification
Is it worth taking advantage of this Amex transfer bonus?
At face value, my thought on this opportunity is: meh.
My baseline valuation for Membership Rewards points is roughly 1.8¢ per point. Meanwhile, my baseline valuation for Hilton is 0.5¢ per point. And it seems that Hilton Honors agrees with my baseline valuation, as Hilton sells points at 0.5¢ per point during promotions.
With a 1:2.8 ratio, this translates into trading 1.8¢ for 1.4¢. That doesn't sound ideal on the surface. However, that could be oversimplifying the matter.
Hilton's luxury redemptions
One of the most important facets of award travel is recognizing that different people value different points, well… differently. Perhaps you like to leverage Hilton points for the program's luxury sweet spots.
AwardWallet recently analyzed 28,963 Hilton award bookings made by AwardWallet members. We found that AwardWallet members save an average of 0.64 cents per Hilton Honors point on these real-world bookings. Even better, Hilton points provide over 1 cent per point on average at several luxury properties.
So, Honors points might be worth far more than 0.5¢ a piece to you, and this transfer bonus represents a valuable opportunity.
Just consider the opportunity cost. For example, you may earn Membership Rewards points specifically for premium-cabin redemptions via airline transfer partners. In that case, Membership Rewards points are likely worth far more than 1.8¢ a piece to you, making this conversion an even harder sell. In this case, it may make more sense for you to buy Hilton points for 0.5¢ each via a buy Hilton points promotion.
Earn Hilton Points Through Credit Card Bonuses
Hilton points can be collected in-bulk via co-branded credit card welcome bonuses. For example, the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card offers 130,000 bonus points after you use your new Card to make $2,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
For most, this represents a much better way to accrue points than transferring valuable Membership Rewards points. Here's our post on how to maximize the Hilton Surpass offer.
- Earn 130,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card after you use your new Card to make $2,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
- Earn a Weekend Night Reward from Hilton Honors after you spend $15,000 on purchases on your Card in a calendar year.
- Earn 12X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged on your Card directly with a hotel or resort within the Hilton portfolio.
- Earn 6X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases on your Card at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations.
- Earn 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases on your Card.
- Spend $40,000 on eligible purchases on your Card in a calendar year and you can earn Hilton Honors Diamond status through the end of the next calendar year.
- $95 annual fee.
- Terms Apply.
- Rates & Fees
- 12X Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged on your Card directly with a hotel or resort within the Hilton Portfolio
- 6X Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases on your Card at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations
- 3X Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases on your Card
The best Hilton Honors transfer bonus we've ever seen from Amex is 50%, although it's often targeted. While the current bonus isn't the best, it is convenient that it's the same for everyone. But ultimately, this offering isn't all that enticing for most people.
While I don't plan to use my Membership Rewards this way, it's still nice to be able to top-off your Hilton account in a pinch. Plus, if you have Membership Rewards points to spare, there are a few situations where transferring for a redemption could make sense. In the end, if you're receiving value for your points that you're comfortable with, that is all that matters.
Will you take advantage of this transfer bonus?
For rates and fees of the cards mentioned in this post, please visit the following links: Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card (Rates & Fees)
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