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American Express launches a 30% Hilton Honors transfer bonus from Membership Rewards

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American Express has launched a 30% transfer bonus when you move your Membership Rewards points into Hilton Honors points by 3rd November.

Let’s see if this is enough to move the needle or not.

Hilton Honors transfer bonus from American Express

Which American Express cards offer Membership Rewards points?

The key cards we cover which offer Membership Rewards points, at a rate of 1 point per £1 spent, are:

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

American Express Rewards

The only ‘free for life’ Amex card which earns Membership Rewards Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

What is the transfer bonus?

The standard transfer rate from Membership Rewards to Hilton Honors is 1:2.

Under this promotion, it is 1 to 2.6. This means that you are getting 30% more Hilton Honors points than you would usually get.

What are the terms and conditions?

Here is the small print from the Membership Rewards website:

“Minimum transfer is 200 Membership Rewards points and maximum transfer of 499,950 points. Points need to be transferred in increments of 50 points. Redeem for this exclusive offer from 12:00pm GMT on 03 October 2022 to 11:59pm on 03 November 2022. Points will be transferred to your Hilton Honors account within 5 working days. Please allow up to eight weeks for the additional Hilton Honors Bonus Points to be awarded. Hilton Honors Bonus Points do not count towards elite tier qualification.”

Looking at this, it appears that the offer is open to everyone. It shows on the American Express website before you have logged in.

Is it worth transferring?

In general, with any bonus, 30% should not be a game changer for you.

50%, probably. 100%, definitely. However, 30% shouldn’t be enough to persuade you to do something that you wouldn’t otherwise have done.

This is because your estimate of the value you will get from the points is always going to an educated guess, and you could easily be 30% off.

My standard valuations of hotel points for the three schemes that are Amex partners are:

You can easily do a lot better and a lot worse than these numbers, but this is the cut off at which I am happy to spend points rather than pay cash.

Translating these to the standard Membership Rewards transfer rates, we get:

  • Hilton Honors: 1 Amex point = 2 Hilton points so 1 Amex point = 0.66p
  • Marriott Bonvoy: 1 Amex point = 1.5 Marriott points so 1 Amex point = 0.75p
  • Radisson Rewards: 1 Amex points = 3 Radisson points so 1 Amex point = 1p

If you adjust the Hilton Honors figure to reflect the 30% bonus, the value jump from 0.66p to 0.86p per Amex point.

This is still poorer than a Radisson Rewards transfer. For most people, it is also poorer than a transfer into Avios or another frequent flyer programme at 1:1. Most HfP readers would value an Avios as 1p+.

Don’t forget Nectar …..

Remember that you get a GUARANTEED 0.8p per American Express Membership Rewards point if you convert them to Nectar via Avios:

  • 1 Membership Rewards point = 1 Avios
  • 1 Avios = 1.6 Nectar points

1.6 Nectar points gets you, at 0.5p per point, 0.8p to spend at Sainsbury’s, Argos and eBay.

The Amex to Hilton route gets you marginally better value than this but it isn’t a no brainer, unless you are confident you can get outsize value for your Hilton Honors points. That said, given the hotel rates we have seen this Summer, it isn’t necessarily going to be difficult.

Is this cheaper than buying points?

Hilton has launched a new ‘buy points’ bonus today, letting you purchase points for 0.5 cents (0.44p) each.

Instead of using 1 American Express point to get 2.6 Hilton Honors points, you could buy 2.6 Hilton Honors points for 1.3 cents (1.15p) via this link.

Since getting 1.15p per Amex point is tricky, even with airline miles, I think it is better to take advantage of this transfer deal than buy Hilton Honors points, even with the current 100% ‘buy points’ bonus.

Conclusion

It’s always good to see American Express transfer bonuses.

If you tend to convert your Membership Rewards points to Hilton anyway, this is an offer to jump on. It may offer value for other people too, but you should have a specific high value redemption in mind first.

I’m not sure if I will jump or not. My Hilton Honors balance is now under 5,000 points after a redemption blitz over the Summer. Realistically I have no way of building it back up without a transfer, and it is highly likely that I will be somewhere at some point where a Hilton Honors redemption is the best option available. I need to decide if its worth transferring, say, 80,000 Amex points to get me back to a balance of around 200,000 Hilton points – enough for two nights in a decent hotel when I need one.


Want to earn more points from credit cards? – December 2022 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit card, here are our top recommendations based on the current sign-up bonuses.

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

Barclaycard Select Cashback credit card

1% cashback and no annual fee Read our full review

Comments (39)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • rob keane says:

    Yeah, that was the point I was making, the comparison to transferring to another rewards program such as radisson. Ultimately, unless used for amex credit the MRs have to be transferred to SOME program.

    And comparing cash rates, one needs to compare fully flex rates, as hilton awards stays are, with a few exceptions, fully flex bookings.

  • MattB says:

    I bit annoying timing wise as i just spent just over £1k on 240k points on month ago. At least I got a pretty good US redemption out of them but this offer would have made it even better.

  • Aston100 says:

    As someone who values HH at 0.04p (I have my reasons) I think this transfer bonus is pretty good, considering the cash prices of Hilton properties worldwide at this time.
    I think right now, I’d get more out of this transfer route than my usual avios > nectar route, so I may just chuck my entire MR balance into HH now.

  • gordog01 says:

    Virgin cc have just given me two 241 vouchers instead of one in my flying club account. Both with different dates about a week apart! What’s the chances of them both staying there?

    • Panda Mick says:

      Slim…. I booked two different reward flights before christmas. Virgin never took the points. And then, three months ago, the first lot of points disappeared out of my account. The Virgin Atlantic app didn’t show this, nor the website. However, the Virgin Red app did

      I then had to cancel my mum’s flight three months ago, and whilst the cash portion of the flight was refunded, the points weren’t. I queried this, and it was only then I discovered non of the points were ever deducted!

      So, plan for Virgin / Delta’s systems eventually catching up…

  • His Holyness says:

    As we don’t live in London it’s a better use of MR for me than going to BA. Could convert the whole lot to get just over 1m Hilton points and use them at a luxury property.

    BA’s fees are monstrous on long haul and we don’t know our trips 365 days in advance which is why we used to use our Avios on short-haul. Two tickets to Prague in Club is 100,000 Avios plus £100. It’s stupid and that’s a cheap example compared to MAD or IST.

    Never thought I’d see the day when I’d consider the Avios Barclays to spend the points via Nectar. Cash out for £800.

    • His Holyness says:

      Am I right in thinking two tix to Prague for 100k Avios + £100 is like paying £900 based on Nectar value?

      • Rob says:

        Yes

      • Ed_fly says:

        How on earth does a trip to Prague price up at 100k Avios?

        • His Holyness says:

          It’s the higher value Avios tricks on the price quote page for a domestic-LHR-PRG in Peak, Club Europe.

          Regular rate is 78,000 plus £200. That’s the traditional RFS option meaning any RFS ex-LHR is £50 RT

          Rob says Avios are worth 0.8p when cashed out to Nectar 78,000= £624
          Hence you’re spending £824 to fly to PRG.

          Rob goes by a value of 1p per Avios making the trip cost £980 (£780+200)

          Truly horrendous. You need Avios seats to begin with. You’d be hard pressed to pay north of £400 for an advance purchase business fair on *A/ST to PRG.

  • His Holyness says:

    Best case scenario is you have a 2 for 1 voucher, then you’re paying 50k and £100 so that’s like £500 cash.
    I recently picked up two LH tickets for £300 each to PRG in P (Business). Let’s not speak about Jet2/FR and using Priority for lounges plus half trip length…

    GLA-JFK is 220,000 Avios plus £1800 for fees. Reduce that with a voucher, you’re therefore looking at £880 value plus £1800 in fees giving you £2680 for two.
    Except you’re limited by Avios inventory in U. There’s nothing extra for Gold (unless you pay more Avios).
    You’re banned for using Barclays vouchers on Z, only Amex.
    I’d rather book a cash fare, which earns Avios back or fly with Star/SkyTeam.
    The numbers just don’t stack up anymore. It’s rubbish.
    No wonder they can give away 100k Avios.

    Pretty mad how it’s all ended up. Miles get more dead by the year.

    • Vit says:

      This is exactly what I have in mind lately. We only have 300k avios but 2 x amex voucher and 1 x barclay vouchers sitting. I think some of these voucher will not be in used. The plan is to get another return trip to far east hopefully and that’s it.

      The rest of our MR points are likely going towards Star/Sky Team as you mentioned as there are still sweet spots around there and we have built up a good small chunk of points and plus we don’t live in London.

      • His Holyness says:

        It’s all about Heathrow.
        I was very happy to extol the virtues of Avios a few years ago, but these past few years (before Covid) cash is king. Covid has made silly air fares which are not realistic and therefore a false sense of value on the points due to last minute dumping by BA- even during the cap.

        I was reading Flyers Talk today and the food in the Concorde lounge looks shocking. Cheap pre-theatre menu.

        The Barclays voucher doesn’t let you start outside the UK but I think Amex does? You need to be flexible (to the extreme, calling some Japanese office at midnight 36x days before to get your seats) plus maybe starting in DUB which isn’t so hard if you live in GLA.

        You’re therefore just as flexible to find yourself one of those LuftHansa or Swiss deals ca £2500 in F from GLA or EDI.

        They’re two for one as well, just like the vouchers.

  • brian says:

    This post has prompted me to reassess the value I get from transferring MR to either Hilton, Marriot or Radisson points as I always felt like I was getting a lot more value out of the former.

    This applies to a pretty particular use case of hotel nights in Dublin which is beyond ridiculous at cash prices. The 50K HGI redemption consistently appears to be the best value in the city. Will be booking again for the Christmas period so will reevaluate before the start of November.

  • Lady London says:

    Also I am not sure how much we can hope for this year but Black Friday is only about 7 weeks away

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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