Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card Review | 2 Free Weekend Nights
The Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card is active. Boom. Review this.
This is one of the cards that was in the pipeline. And although it released before I was told it was going to, (imagine that) it’s here.
The Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card has some unique features and bennies. I like new benefits and features. It’s also a Citi card and a hotel card- that’s nice because I like a diverse miles portfolio.
LINK: Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card [I do receive a referral credit for the new Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card]
Let’s dive into what the Citi Hilton Reserve card is all about.
Sign-Up Bonus- 2 Free Weekend Nights
You will receive 2 free weekend nights (standard rooms) when you spend $2,500 in the first 4 months of card membership. The 2 free weekend night certificates will be good at Hilton 1-7 category properties and select Waldorf properties. The certificates aren’t good for “all inclusive resorts” or Waldorf properties that don’t offer standard rooms.
Ok, I love two free weekend nights certificates. Love it. That’s equivalent to 100,000- 160,000 Hilton HHonors points at one of their top tier properties. That’s some pretty killer value. I know it’s not sexy with a big point bonus tied to it, but 2 free weekend nights can come in handy. Trust me.
The bummer is that they are weekend (Fri. Sat. Sun.) nights, so you wouldn’t be able to couple your 2 free nights with your spouses or partners 2 free nights. The Hyatt Visa gives you the capability to do this with its two (any day) certificates. But if you have a stash of Hilton HHonors points, you could use them on either side of the weekend.
HHonors Gold Status
Gold Status, Yeah. Who doesn’t like status? Gold Status comes with the Hilton HHonors Reserve card I-N-S-T-A-N-T-L-Y. And you don’t have a spend threshold to meet in the second year to maintain Gold Status. The “Amex Hilton HHonors Surpass” card gives you free Gold Status the first year, but you must spend $20,000 the second year to maintain the Gold Status. Ewww. I like instant Gold Status much better.
Gold Status with Hilton gives you free breakfast, free internet, and while there isn’t a guaranteed room upgrade, by virtue of having Gold Status, you will sometimes receive a bump. Clout, baby. I like what Hilton gives you for Gold Status, and unlike Platinum status with Hyatt (from their Visa), you get free breakfast. Having Gold Status with Hilton is well worth the $95 annual fee tied to this card (not waived).
When I travel, it’s a necessity to have free wi-fi. You would think that every major hotel would already offer this “perk” to all their guests. But they don’t, and there is nothing more frustrating than not having free wi-fi in your hotel room.
You can also spend your way to Diamond Status (top tier) with the Hilton HHonors Reserve card by spending a cool $40,000 in a calendar year. The American Express Surpass card has the same advantage of earning Diamond Status when you pay $40,000 in a calendar year, but you also have to spend $20,000 the second year to maintain “Gold Status”.
Anniversary Bonus Weekend Night
Another perk with the Hilton HHonors Reserve card is when you spend $10,000 in a year (not calendar) you will receive a a bonus anniversary weekend night. I wouldn’t go out of my way to spend $10,000 in a year for 1 free night at a hotel, but the perk is there if you are a spender and Hilton loyalist. I prefer the free anniversary night that Hyatt gives me every anniversary for just keeping the card and paying the annual fee. Although, the free anniversary night with the Hyatt card is limited to category 1-4 properties.
No Foreign Transaction Fee and Chip & Pin
I’m liking that no foreign transaction fee and chip and pin cards are becoming the norm. The Hyatt Visa touts the same benefits, but the Starwood Preferred Guest card doesn’t. Citi is smart for adding these features. More and more people are traveling abroad, so it’s becoming increasingly more vital to have cards that support international travel needs.
Category Spending Bonuses
The Hilton HHonors Reserve card has some unique category spending bonuses. They are:
- Earn 10 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on hotel stays within the Hilton HHonors portfolio*
- Earn 5 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on airline and car rental purchases*
- Earn 3 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases*
- Enjoy the benefits of HHonors Gold status as long as you are a cardmember*
- No foreign transaction fees on purchases*
- Travel with ease and enjoy global acceptance with your Citi chip credit card
- Earn an anniversary bonus of 1 weekend night certificate at select hotels and resorts within the Hilton HHonors portfolio each cardmembership year with qualifying purchases*
These are some nice earning opportunities with the Hilton card. I wouldn’t run my spending through this card, because there are too many other easy ways to earn Hilton HHonors points (think Virgin Atlantic, BOA Hawaiian).
Side note: The Amex Surpass Hilton card earn 6x points on gas, groceries, and telecommunications. But we all know I prefer my Ink Bold and earning Ultimate Rewards points.
I love that this is a Citi card, and I think Citi has created a good hotel product with their new Hilton HHonors Reserve card. It can be added to the conversation with the Hyatt and Starwood Preferred rewards cards. I’m not sure if I can put it over those two cards, but it definitely has some nice perks.
The “instant” Gold Status is my favorite feature with the Reserve card. I enjoy eating breakfast for free when staying at hotels. That’s a huge money saver, and well worth the $95 annual fee.
Of course the two free weekend nights are kinda limiting, but I would probably just book award nights on either side if possible, and if I was looking for an extended stay. The value of the two free weekend nights is still legit (100,000 -160,000 points).
I wouldn’t use this rewards card as my daily card or go after any of the spending bonuses, but that’s because I like diversifying and prefer to earn Ultimate Rewards points when I can.
Diversifying is huge and I’m pumped that this is a Hilton card. I need to start earning me some Hilton points and perks. I’ve done a great job building a nice robust Hyatt and Starwood Preferred portfolio, but it’s time to spread my wings.
LINK: Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card
[I do receive a referral for the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card. A big high five if you decide to apply]
— Noob Master