Using Hilton HHonors ‘points and money’ to maximise value

Hilton HHonors underwent a major devaluation in 2013 which severely impacted the ‘aspirational’ elements of the programme.  A top-end property in London or New York will now cost you up to 80,000 points per night, compared with just 60,000 points for an InterContinental redemption with IHG Rewards Club.

I currently value Hilton HHonors point at £3 per 1,000 when used for top-end properties, based on 80,000 points for a £250 room.

Luckily, Hilton’s ‘points and money’ rewards were not hit so hard.

‘Points and money’ rewards let you book a room for just 40% of the cost of a normal award night, plus a cash sum. You don’t need to be a maths genius to realise that, as long as this cash sum is less than 60% of the normal room rate for the hotel, you will be getting better value for your points.

Unfortunately, ‘points and money’ rewards are not always available. Because they are basically a way for a hotel to discount the cost of redemption nights, they tend to be held back for quiet periods. However, they can still offer value.

Today I want to take a more detailed look at the Doubletree London Victoria, photo below, as an example of ‘points and money’ availability.

Doubletree London Victoria

For Saturday 11th September:

Cancellable Hilton HHonors cash rate:  £242

‘All points’ redemption:  60,000 points

‘Points and money’ redemption:  24,000 points + £65

The ‘all points’ redemption gets you £4.03 per 1,000 points – better than my 0.3p per point benchmark.  ‘Points and money’ gets you £4.91 per 1,000, which is 20% better and near my benchmark of 0.5p.

Because the cash element is fixed, you can find even more extreme examples on days where standard room rates are very high and where ‘points and money’ is showing.  If you can find availability, it does offer better value for your Hilton HHonors points.

(Want to earn more hotel points?  Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Promos’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

1,000 Avios when you sign up and take one ride with taxi app Hailo
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  1. Is there a way to find out which hotels are participating in the promo. Any hotel or date I search for, gives this message, “This hotel has limited availability for Points & Money Rewards™ around the dates you have selected.”

    • It is not a promo, all HHonors hotels should offer it. Availability is the issue.

  2. Simon Schus says:

    I’ve used two this week and getting pretty decent value :) 12,000 points plus $70 for a few hotels in South Dakota and Pittsburgh :) It has worked out pretty nicely and meant I didn’t have to part with too many points (nor did I have to pay too much for the hotels as I was price-limited on this trip).

  3. James67 says:

    OT but Hilton: Does anybody here have any experience of HH loss prevention? My account is currently frozen and I was advised by CS to contact loss prevention for an explanation to which I’m currently awaiting a response. My guess is that this department is to manage abuse but there has been none, I’ve made 5 paid stays this year, took out the credit card (for which Barclays are not crediting my points properly but that’s another story), received my cc free night certificate, and have made no redemptions. There is nothing that I believe should allow them to suspect I was abusing the scheme, I’m very annoyed as I even cancelled IHG reservations to give them my business. I did apply to status match through 2018 having earlier received a match to 2017 but I doubt that is problem either because others have reported here that they have done that successfully.

    • Genghis says:

      Strange. I did the re-status match and all seems to be working fine. Give them a call and work some magic.

      • James67 says:

        I’ve tried that but they claimed I needed to contact loss prevention and they have a 7-14 working day response time. I’ve collected about 300k points and a free night certificate in past two months. perhaps they think it’s too much of a good thing but it’s them that’s running the bonus points promotions, the diamond status match and so on so they cannit blame me, they were quite happy to take my miney. Only other thing I can think of is that my account may have been hacked.

        • James

          There were rumours that the status match has been abused with fake accounts ( people were buying diamond memberships on eBay I believe) perhaps you’ve been caught up in that :(

          • James67 says:

            Thanks, I’ll justhave to wait and see. The timing does seem to coincide with statusmatch request though.

            • Andrew H says:

              Woke up to find my account closed this morning. Hilton customer service told me to contact the account loss email address and wait 7-10 days. They won’t give a phone number either. I’m not happy.

            • James67 says:

              @Andrew, interesting, perhaps they are having security issues again.

            • Andrew H says:

              I have tried to get a UK telephone number but apparently the relevant team doesn’t have one.

              Needless to day I am getting worried. I’m not hanging around for the best part of two weeks waiting for Hilton to get around to emailing me.

            • Andrew H says:

              I have contacted the Hilton rep on Flyertalk as well.

            • James67 says:

              @Andrew, I copied my email to the address Mark provided to loss prevention email. I got an immediate response from loss prevention with standard letter that my account was closed because they could not validate my matching account (spire). The letter implied I was guilth f fraud and they may even consider legal action. I responded account is real, how would you like me to verify it, got the standard reply please await response 14 day. Now, I’m totally PO! no 8nterest in staying with hilton anymore.

            • Andrew H says:

              I had a similar response. Not good.

            • Andrew H says:

              Alas, I have no update to give. Account still inaccessible and the status match team aren’t replying to my emails. I’m trying the flyertalk route as well. I will keep you updated, James.

    • Would Barclay Card have opened up a 2nd account on your behalf?
      I remember lots of IHG accounts being closed due to duplicate accounts.

      • James67 says:

        No, not that Simmo. Barclays are crediting my account but the problem I have with them is that they are only crediting 2 points/£ instead of 3 for hilton stays, and they are also failing to credit my 2500 bonus points for first four stays. Trying to resolve this issue with Barcky, even their formal complaints team, is provi g to be a nightmare.

        • I had a similar problem which took a very long time to sort. Barclays denied responsibility but gave me £50. In the end sorted it out so try them.

        • Axel Heyst says:


          I;m in a similar position with the 2 rather than 3 barclay points and not crediting the Iberia miles or double miles.

          Hilton were fairly quick to credit the 2500 bonuses in Scotland stays, bur the Malay and Indonesian ones took much much longer. In the end Hilton sorted it out partially following my phone call to Hilton when I said I would be cancelling 4 upcoming stays

          • James67 says:

            Thanks, I will mention this too then in my email. Mystays were in Aberdeen and London. As it stands I have put Barclays on notice that I will refer it to ombudsman service if they don’t resolve this matter.


    Just out of curiosity I had a look at Hilton York and flexible dates going forward to June 2017 – not one single points and rewards nights. I am wondering if these points and rewards nights are last minute offers maybe? Or maybe its for the highest grade Hiltons with 60,70 or 80000 a night redemption rates?

    • I’ve just booked one at the Leicester Hilton for this weekend( normally 50k), the Conrad in London also had 32k + £98, for this weekend, a few weeks ago.
      Had to book 2 rooms last night , at gatwick Hilton, nothing available online( or at IHG) website sold out. Tried Expedia – rooms available so called Hotel and they had some rooms available. Not great from Hiltons website PoV. Did mention it to lady who booked the rooms and she said it must have been a glitch on the website :(

    • It does seem random.
      In Jan I booked Hampton Gatwick North in Sept for £32.85 + 12,000 points.

  5. Found this as one of the most useful and £ saving points options in the points game.
    Had a stay a few weeks ago, where the incrementals were also points earning (according to the terms they should not be) meaning the points I used were refunded.

  6. Worth noting you may have to pay taxes when paying part cash in some countries where a full points redemption avoids the extra taxes.

    • Are the taxes paid on just the part cash bit or the full cash cost of the room – I’m thinking USA would charge the taxes at check out

      • It seems to vary by country, can’t remember USA setup. Some have per night fixed charge, others charge percentage of cash component. I don’t think I’ve had any that charge based on standard room rate.

      • I’m not sure how its calculated but it does show before you book if you click the information icon, its in addition to the price+points not included in the price incase this wasn’t obvious.

  7. Craig Paolozzi says:

    Yep I’m staying at Conrad Algarve for 78 euro plus 20k points….cash rate is 299 euro

  8. I’ve never found points and money availability at the date and place of my choosing. Very frustrating.

  9. What's the Point says:

    I’ve always used points+cash booking successfully to save big when staying at some of the higher end hotels – WA Dubai and Conrad Seoul. But it also works a treat where the hotel has very limited availability on cash rates, making mid tier hotels seem outrageously priced. So cash + points is a good option.
    They are also fully flexible with no cancellation penalty like a full points booking.

  10. Scallder says:
  11. I stayed at the Hilton Rome Airport a couple of weeks ago for Eu 80 + 20k points. My Diamond status got me onto the club floor. I missed out on evening food in the lounge, due to my late arrival, but got breakfast the next morning. The cash price was around Eu 175 (don’t exactly remember). I redeemed some points via e-rewards to top up my balance to what was needed.

    Considering my flight got in at 8.20pm and I was flying out the next morning at 9.30, it was by far the best option in terms of getting to and from the airport. But i was rather underwhelmed by the pizza (and the service) in the restaurant when I finally got to eat.

  12. Andrew Stock says:

    I find Hilton Honnors plus points can off very good value at Hampton hotel across Europe as I have the Hilton credit card for retailers that don’t accept amex.

    To date I have used this for 2 nights at Hampton Amsterdam Arena, 2 nights at Hampton Berlin West and got 2 nights booked for Hampton Krakow.

  13. I am thinking of applying for the HH VISA card. what are the conditions of the evoucher and how easy is it to use? ie any day and many rooms available? thanks

    • Must be a Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

      It books into normal reward availability. If you see a reward night at standard pricing (ie not a ‘Premium’ reward night, which will be easily spotted because it will be priced at an odd number like 125,434 points) you can use the voucher.

      • thanks raffles. If my wife has one too can they be used on the same booking?

        • No, must be booked separately – although it won’t make any difference. If one of you has Hilton status, book the first night for that person – it is very likely that you’d keep the same room for both nights.

  14. I applied for a second status match to HHonors Diamond (from IHG Spire) to take me through to 2018, after already having a status match to 2017. This was a few weeks though and I’ve not heard anything back. Is there a way to check what your expiry is? On the HHonors website I can see it saying what my status would be next year based on this year’s stay pattern. If they won’t extend the match I’ll make sure I put £10k on the HHonors card this year to at least have Gold next year, but if they will extend Diamond to 2018 anyway then I’ll spend on another card instead :)