REMINDER: Hilton still offering a generous status match, including Diamond

It is a few months since I last mentioned this, so I thought it was worth another plug today as I wouldn’t want readers to miss out.  This is a match that I did myself earlier in the year.

Hilton Honors is currently offering a generous status match opportunity.

Hilton Diamond status match

Via this link, you can match your existing status with another hotel loyalty programme into Hilton Honors.  Mid-tier status will receive Hilton Gold, whilst top tier status will receive Hilton Diamond.

(This is not fixed.  There are some reports of Marriott Gold receiving Hilton Diamond, for example, probably because Marriott Gold requires 50 nights and is harder to get than any other mid-tier status.)

The match rules are simple:

You will receive your new status benefits for 90 days from the date of acceptance (usually 4-5 days after you email your request)

To keep Gold until March 2019, you need to complete four stays (cash or reward) within the 90 days

To keep Diamond until March 2019, you need to complete eight stays (cash or reward) within the 90 days

If you match to Diamond but only manage 4-7 stays then you receive Gold until March 2019

The key metric is stays, not nights.

Note that, as well as having status in another programme, you must also have evidence of a stay within the last 12 months with that programme.  If, for example, you have Accor Platinum via your American Express Platinum charge card (this benefit is now withdrawn for new cardholders), you cannot use that to match to Hilton Diamond unless you also have one recent Accor stay on file.

Hilton status match

Is this worth doing?

Potentially, yes, if you have some Hilton Group stays coming up.  You will receive Gold benefits (the key one is free breakfast except at Waldorf-Astoria) or Diamond benefits (the key one is lounge access where available, plus free breakfast except at Waldorf-Astoria and usually a decent upgrade) for the 90 day period

Timing is therefore key.  You need to have a decent view of your potential stays over the next 90 days, and indeed the next couple of months after that in case you decide to match later.

If you are planning to go for the full 4 or 8 stays in order to retain status until March 2019, you also need to be confident that you can squeeze in the required number.

(You might want to do the maths on a mattress run to get the extra stays you need.  Would you get enough value by March 2019 to justify spending £200-£300 on a mattress run?)

If you have specific hotels in mind, you should also research how they treat Diamond members.   I was at the Conrad New York in June, for example.  This does not offer much to a Diamond member:

Conrad New York has no executive lounge

American hotels in the Hilton chain tend not to offer good upgrades, because the country is awash with status members – all I got was a room on the ‘preferred’ side with a view of the Hudson River

Even the basic rooms are suites (it is an all-suite hotel) so an upgrade isn’t even that important

In other countries you will do better.  I did this match, to Diamond, before our trip to Asia at Easter:

At the Conrad Tokyo (review here), my status got us executive lounge access for free, although not a room upgrade as the hotel was full (it was peak cherry blossom season)

Waldorf-Astoria Beijing (review here) voluntarily gives free breakfast to Diamond members even though it is not an official benefit at this brand.  On the other hand, the hotel has no executive lounge and my upgraded room was not a lot bigger than the standard one given to my kids.

After our Asia trip, I did another six stays at Hilton properties before my 90 day status trial was up.  This means that I now have Diamond status until March 2019.  It cost me about £200 in mattress run stays to hit the target, as I didn’t quite have six stays planned, but I should easily recoup this in upgrades and lounge access over the next 20 months.

One other thing to think about

Hilton Honors will give you a match even if you have been matched by them before.

However, this is not necessarily always going to be the case.  It is possible, in a couple of years, they offer a similar match but reject anyone who was previously matched.  (I’m not saying they will but many loyalty schemes have a ‘once per lifetime’ status match rule.)

You should therefore consider whether you will get enough use of your 90 day Gold or Diamond trial period, on the chance that Hilton will not allow you to match again.

If you decide to go for it, you can request your Hilton Honors status match here.

PS.  Remember that Hilton Honors Gold status is a benefit of the American Express Platinum charge card.  I upgraded my wife recently and it was processed within 48 hours, with her status valid until March 2019.

You may want to get Amex Platinum for a few months (just long enough to trigger the 30,000 Amex Membership Rewards bonus points, worth 30,000 Avios) and trigger Hilton Gold that way.  If you cancel your Platinum card, you will retain your Hilton status until March 2019.

You will also receive status in Melia Rewards, Shangri-La Golden Circle, Starwood Preferred Guest, Marriott Rewards (by matching your Starwood status) and Club Carlson.  My review of Amex Platinum is here.

(Want to earn more miles and points from credit cards?  Click here to visit our dedicated airline and hotel travel credit cards page or use the ‘Credit Cards Update’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

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Comments

  1. I have Diamond to March 2018 but won’t be able to retain it. I currently have the Platinum Amex card and sent off the hotel status info to each of the hotels including Hilton. Will this give me Gold beyond March 2018 to 2019? Or will they have ingnored my request and I’ll need to apply again next year when the Diamond runs out? Not sure how it all works.

    • Pretty sure it’ll be ignored at present. Can’t see myself retaining Diamond either as far fewer trips to London recently – will plan to activate Gold via Amex Plat next year.

    • You may need to re-up in April but Hilton processes quickly.

    • I had the same query for maintaining my SPG gold. Re-applied about 2 months back but have not heard anything yet so assuming its been ignored.

      • I topped up SPG Gold middle of July when we had Amex Plat. Mrs G and I have now received SPG cards saying status will expire in 2019.

  2. OT: I had Accor Platinum when I got my Amex Platinum a few years ago, it expires in December. Is there anyway of keeping it without obviously staying to make the status points?

    • No. I am sure I will lose mine. Transfers from Finnair or Qatar may count for status (probably don’t) but would be a waste anyway.

      • Thanks Rob, IHG and Hilton it is then. Should make Spire Elite by mid Sept, then I’ll status match back from Hilton Gold to Diamond before our trip to Sorrento next June. A night at the airport either side will make 3, a few days in Aug and a could of mattress runs should get the 8.

        • I’m about 5k status points from retaining my Accor Platinum. Agreed with my friends that I’d coordinate all bookings for Oktoberfest this year… Hopefully that combined with a Madrid visit in November and Krakow in December should get me over the 14k threshold.

  3. Hardestadt says:

    OT: Citi UAE is currently running a 1:5 ThankYou points to HH points transfer promo. The usual transfer rate is 1:2. Sounds like a decent deal, even if one does not usually stay at Hiltons. Does it make sense to convert a bunch for potential redemption at Conrad Maldives/Tokyo? Thanks.

  4. Alessandro Behling says:

    Are there any other hotel chains offering status match to Hilton?

  5. OT but Hilton related, we stayed at a Hampton last night and this morning they’ ran out of many breakfasts items – even cutlery! A lot of people complained. The chap behind the desk said they’d had a lot of guests in and hadn’t been able to cover everyone. However he then said they weren’t obliged to provide the missing breakfasts because it was complimentary? Has this happened to anyone before?

    • Hampton seem to advertise a “free” breakfast. I’m sure IHG had to substitute the word “free” for “inclusive” for HIX a few years ago since it was not possible to book a package that didn’t have breakfast excluded. I’d complain and then look at doing a S75 if no luck.

    • Sussex bantam says:

      Sounds like they’ve been to the BA PR school !

    • What's the Point says:

      We stayed in a Hampton Inn in the US this year and they ran out of knives and forks at breakfast
      People were using spoons to eat pancakes and spread peanut butter onto bagels (give it a try). When I asked the staff if they had anymore, they just said no and shrugged their shoulders.
      Clearly operating a Just In Time process line with disposable utensils is Hampton Inn policy!

      • Alas we couldn’t have pancakes because they ran out of mixture and milk, which also stopped us eating the cereal. To be fair though there was a plentiful supply of butter pats available; probably because there was no bread.

    • Mark LLL says:

      Stayed in a Hampton last month (Liverpool) breakfast was really good. Four nights: I was last minute for one breakfast, very early for one and peak-time for two breakfasts – all good quality food and no apparent shortages each day. Hotel was rammed full too. I’d definitely stay again.

      • Mark LLL says:

        By the way, evening meals have limited menu options in Hampton LPL. We sneaked next door to eat in the Ibis.

        PS
        Just remembered a Fawlty Towers-like incident in a Doubletree:

        Dined first evening in hotel restaurant. They made us wait in the bar for ninety minutes to get a table (hadn’t booked ahead) after waiting was astonished to find restaurant deserted. However, did enjoy the hake.
        Dined again on last night of stay. Ordered the hake again. Order taken for two hake. Later told kitchen could only supply one hake, agreed substitute sea bass. Some time elapsed and was told they could not supply any hake, agreed on two sea bass. Finally told (by a very apologetic waiter) only one sea bass. I sarcastically suggested they prepare me a fishfinger sandwhich (Forgive me, Reader, my patience was wearing thin) but settled for haddock.
        The haddock was good.

        • Agree Mark LLL the menu is limited however the food is tasty and nicely presented.

        • Mark LLL says:

          Agreed, Cate. The LPL Hampton is excellent.
          Unfortunately last month there were construction sites on two sides of the hotel so potential for some noise in mornings, but we found that it hardly disturbed us at all.

  6. the real harry1 says:

    looks like we all should have shugged churning to death for the last 3 years

    as Amex Brighton love this stuff

  7. Please note that this is a route to Hilton status if you are a AMEX Platinum Business card holder. When Accor status was dropped the personal card got Hilton status, but the Business one did not.

    You do get SPG (and thus Marriott) and Club Carlson, so would allow us poor little business holders to get back into the Hilton fold…

  8. Nicola Walton says:

    How do you find out when your status with Hilton expires? My husband did his match last year from IHG Spire to Hilton Diamond? He stays regularly now most weeks and the status still shows Diamond?
    We are staying on a points stay at the Waldor in London now and got a room upgrade and lounge access.