A quick look at Hilton HHonors
HHonors got some serious criticism a few months ago for the devaluation they did in their program. It must have been one of the most drastic devaluations that occured over the last years and unfortunately it was followed by devaluations in other programs like Marriott Rewards. I watched it all with sorrow eyes. Meanwhile we had time to settle our emotions and had another comparison in between the major programs after they did their devaluations as well.
Hilton was my second choice (after Marriott Rewards) before the devaluation and remains in that spot. They have many hotels and a consistent product. I believe their Hilton Garden Inn brand to be even somewhat better than Marriott Courtyard. I just don’t switch to their program as it’s harder to get a good value for your points. As a matter of fact, it’s not possible to do so by using their standard rewards. To give just one example: 5th redemption night is free for everybody at Marriott but only for Elites at Hilton.
Also the introduction of Seasonal awards in the Hilton program will increase the amounts of points you need to spend in High Seasons. This will make it harder to find a good deal for your points. HHonors is stopping you from doing what you would do to get most value out of your points. You would typically use them at your favorite hotel at the moment that their prices are higher than normal due to some event or holiday.
One thing I do like about HHonors is the double dip option. HHonors allows you to get a combination of both points and miles for every stay. If you have different programs of which some of them are hardly used you could use this double dip option to stop the miles in those programs from expiring. (if you don’t want the miles you can choose to get 50 percent more HHonors points)
I do believe that you can still make it work for you if you can focus on the program and exploit all available options by participating in all promotions and getting the Hilton Creditcards. HHonors often has bonus promotions going on, more then I’ve seen with Marriott Rewards. Just be sure to register for them or you won’t get your bonus points. Quite recently Doubletree had a promotion that basically offered free points for just liking their facebook page.
At this point they’re running a different promotion. This is the great getaway promotion with discounts up to 40 percent! Certainly worth a look if you are planning a trip in the near future!
HHonors has a creditcard in Europe as well, see below for a complete list. It will give you HHonors point for each euro spent.
To wrap up, if you want to make your HHonors membership a succes:
– Make sure you get most out of the double dip option, you can switch these preferences as often as you want
– Keep an eye open for all promotions
– Try to get a Hilton branded creditcard if you can (Visa in UK, Austria, Italy, Japan & Germany, Visa & AmEx in USA)
PS : Picture attached is taken at Hilton Papagayo Costa Rica. A resort I can recommend!