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Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card – Full Review [2024]

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Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card
Terms Apply / Rates & Fees

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.
4.5

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  • 175,000 points

  • $550

  • 20.99% - 29.99% Variable

  • Good to Excellent (670-850)

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

Automatic Hilton Diamond status, an annual free night, and a travel and resort credit make this the perfect card for those who stay in Hilton hotels.

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.
4.5

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

The information regarding the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.


Paying hundreds of dollars for an annual fee on a co-branded hotel card might seem ridiculous, but you should know that the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card is much more than your run-of-the-mill hotel credit card.

The Hilton Aspire card is not only a phenomenal card for Hilton Honors loyalists, but even those who visit Hilton hotels just a few times a year can still get excellent value out of all the benefits that are packed into this card.

So let’s have a look at what makes the card so valuable to travelers.

Card Snapshot

Welcome Bonus & Info

  • Earn 175,000 Bonus Points after you spend $6,000 in purchases on the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 7/31/2024.
  • Earn 14x Hilton Honors Bonus Points when you make eligible purchases on your card at participating hotels or resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
  • Earn 7x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for eligible purchases: on flights booked directly with airlines or amextravel.com, on car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies, and at U.S. restaurants.
  • Earn 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for other purchases on your card.
  • Enjoy up to $400 in Hilton Resort Credits (up to $200 in statement credits semi-annually) on your card each anniversary year when you stay at participating resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
  • Enjoy complimentary Diamond status.
  • $550 annual fee.

Customer Service Number

800-445-8667

Pros

  • 14x points per $1 on Hilton purchases
  • 7x points per $1 on select travel and at U.S. restaurants
  • 3x points per $1 on all other purchases
  • Complimentary Hilton Diamond status
  • Up to $400 in annual statement credits on purchases with participating Hilton Resorts (up to $200 in statement credits semi-annually)
  • Up to $200 back annually on eligible flight purchases (up to $50 in statement credits each quarter)
  • 1 Free Night Award each cardmember anniversary
  • Up to $100 credit at Waldorf Astoria and Conrad properties

Cons

  • High annual fee of $550

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Great Card If

  • You’re a frequent traveler
  • Hilton is your hotel of choice, you stay there often, and spend heavily
  • You value luxury travel benefits such as lounge access and top hotel loyalty status

Don’t Get If

  • You’re not a frequent traveler
  • You don’t stay frequently or spend a lot at Hilton hotels
  • You’re looking for flexible rewards redemption options
  • You’re not interested in paying a $550 annual fee, regardless of any value received

Hilton Aspire Card — Is It Worth It?

If you are someone who travels frequently, loves staying at Hilton hotels, and knows they will get more value out of the benefits of the card relative to the annual fee, then the Hilton Aspire card would absolutely be worth it for you.

While the annual fee might feel a bit steep, when you account for all of the benefits that the card offers, like complimentary Hilton Honors Diamond status, up to $400 in Hilton resort credits, up to $200 in airline fee credits, complimentary National Car Rental® Emerald Club Executive® status (upon enrollment), and a Free Night Reward each year, it is easy to see how much value the card can provide.

Hilton Aspire Card Top Benefits

Complimentary Hilton Diamond Status

Perhaps the best benefit of the Hilton Aspire card is that it offers all cardholders top-tier Diamond status in the Hilton Honors program. Usually, you need to spend 60 nights a year in a Hilton hotel in order to achieve Diamond status, but Hilton Aspire cardholders get it right away.

Here are some of the benefits you can expect with Hilton Honors Diamond status:

  • 100% point bonus on stays
  • Room upgrades, including suites
  • Complimentary breakfast
  • Executive Lounge access
  • Welcome amenities

Anniversary Free Night Certificate

Each year on your account anniversary, Hilton Aspire cardholders receive 1 Free Night Reward certificate that can be used at almost any Hilton hotel within its portfolio. In addition, cardholders can earn up to 2 additional Free Night Awards by spending $30,000 and $60,000 on purchases in a calendar year.

This benefit alone can drastically help offset the annual fee, as many of the most expensive hotels in the Hilton portfolio can cost hundreds of dollars per night.

$400 Annual Hilton Resort Credit

Each cardmember year, you’ll receive up to $400 in annual statement credits for eligible purchases made with your Hilton Honors Aspire Card directly with participating Hilton Resorts (up to $200 in statement credits semi-annually). This $400 can be used on items like dining, activities, and spa treatments.

$200 Annual Airline Fee Credit

As with other airline fee credits offered from American Express cards, cardholders receive up to $200 back annually on eligible flight purchases (up to $50 in statement credits each quarter). The credit applies to incidental fees like change or cancellation, checked bag, internet, etc.

$189 CLEAR Plus membership

Cardmembers are eligible for up to $189 in statement credits per calendar year after they sign up and pay for a CLEAR Plus membership (subject to auto-renewal) with their Hilton Honors Aspire Card.

$100 Credit at Waldorf Astoria and Conrad Properties

When you book a 2-night stay or longer at Waldorf Astoria or Conrad properties, your room rate (not including prepaid and non-refundable rates) and on-site purchases qualify for up to $100 in statement credits each membership year.

How To Earn and Redeem Your Hilton Honors Points

Put simply, the Hilton Aspire card is great at earning points thanks to the complimentary Diamond status it offers and 14x points per $1 it earns on Hilton stays. However, that isn’t the only way to earn Hilton Honors points, in fact, there are tons of great ways to earn Hilton Honors points outside of using your card.

Once you’ve earned a large balance of Hilton Honors points you can put them to good use by redeeming them at one of the many great Hilton hotels worldwide — plus you get your fifth night free on award stays!

Alternative Cards to the Hilton Aspire Card

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® CardTerms Apply / Rates & Fees
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

A premium card for Marriott fans who want perks like an annual statement credit and Free Night Award, plus a fast track to Marriott elite status.

Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

A premium card for Marriott fans who want perks like an annual statement credit and Free Night Award, plus a fast track to Marriott elite status.
Earn 95,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
95,000 bonus points
$665
$650
20.99%-29.99% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card is a premium card designed with road warriors and Marriott Bonvoy loyalists in mind.

So is the card a worthwhile addition to your wallet?

Pros
  • 6x points per $1 at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy program
  • 3x points per $1 on flights booked directly with airlines and restaurants worldwide
  • 2x points per $1 on all other purchases
Cons
  • Earn 95,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • $300 Brilliant Dining Credit: Each calendar year, get up to $300 (up to $25 per month) in statement credits for eligible purchases made on the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card at restaurants worldwide.
  • With Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status, you can receive room upgrades, including enhanced views or suites, when available at select properties and booked with a Qualifying Rate.
  • Earn 6X Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. 3X points at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines. 2X points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Free Night Award: Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 85,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Each calendar year after spending $60,000 on eligible purchases on your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, you will be eligible to select a Brilliant Earned Choice Award benefit. You can only earn one Earned Choice Award per calendar year. See https://www.choice-benefit.marriott.com/brilliant for Award options.
  • $100 Marriott Bonvoy Property Credit: Enjoy your stay. Receive up to a $100 property credit for qualifying charges at The Ritz-Carlton® or St. Regis® when you book direct using a special rate for a two-night minimum stay using your Card.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®: Receive either a statement credit every 4 years after you apply for Global Entry ($100) or a statement credit every 4.5 years after you apply for a five-year membership for TSA PreCheck® (up to $85 through a TSA PreCheck official enrollment provider) and pay the application fee with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Each calendar year with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card you can receive 25 Elite Night Credits toward the next level of Marriott Bonvoy® Elite status. Limitations apply per Marriott Bonvoy member account. Benefit is not exclusive to Cards offered by American Express. Terms apply.
  • Enroll in Priority Pass™ Select, which offers unlimited airport lounge visits to over 1,200 lounges in over 130 countries, regardless of which carrier or class you are flying. This allows you to relax before or between flights. You can enjoy snacks, drinks, and internet access in a quiet, comfortable location.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on international purchases.
  • With Cell Phone Protection, you can be reimbursed, the lesser of, your repair or replacement costs following damage, such as a cracked screen, or theft for a maximum of $800 per claim when your cell phone line is listed on a wireless bill and the prior month's wireless bill was paid by an Eligible Card Account. A $50 deductible will apply to each approved claim with a limit of 2 approved claims per 12-month period. Additional terms and conditions apply. Coverage is provided by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.
  • $650 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 20.99%-29.99% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
Rewards Center

Marriott Bonvoy

As far as premium hotel cards go, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card is really the only other option. This card is perfectly suited for those who prefer Marriott hotels to Hilton hotels and want to take advantage of benefits like automatic Platinum Elite status, an annual Free Night Award certificate, and up to $300 in annual statement credits for dining.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

BEST LOUNGE ACCESS
The Platinum Card® from American ExpressTerms Apply / Rates & Fees
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

The Amex Platinum reigns supreme for luxury travel, offering the best airport lounge access plus generous statement credits, and complimentary elite status.

Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

The Amex Platinum reigns supreme for luxury travel, offering the best airport lounge access plus generous statement credits, and complimentary elite status.
Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on eligible purchases on the Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.
80,000 points
$1,760
$695
See Pay Over Time APR
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

When it comes to cards that offer top-notch benefits, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better card out there than The Platinum Card® from American Express.

Make no mistake — the Amex Platinum card is a premium card with a premium price tag. With amazing benefits like best-in-class airport lounge access, hotel elite status, and tremendous value in annual statement credits, it can easily prove to be one of the most lucrative cards in your wallet year after year.

Pros
  • The best airport lounge access out of any card (by far) — enjoy access to over 1,400 worldwide lounges, including the luxurious Amex Centurion Lounges, Priority Pass lounges, Plaza Premium Lounges, and many more!
  • 5x points per dollar spent on flights purchased directly with the airline or with AmexTravel.com (up to $500,000 per year)
  • 5x points per dollar spent on prepaid hotels booked with AmexTravel.com
Cons
  • $695 annual fee (rates and fees)
  • Airline credit does not cover airfare (only incidentals like checked bags)
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on eligible purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • $200 Hotel Credit: Get up to $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings with American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®. The Hotel Collection requires a minimum two-night stay.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back in statement credits each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Disney+, a Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, The New York Times, Peacock, and The Wall Street Journal. Enrollment required.
  • The American Express Global Lounge Collection® can provide an escape at the airport. With complimentary access to more than 1,400 airport lounges across 140 countries and counting, you have more airport lounge options than any other credit card issuer on the market. As of 03/2023.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Save on eligible delivery fees, shipping, and more with a Walmart+ membership. Use your Platinum Card® to pay for a monthly Walmart+ membership and get up to $12.95 plus applicable taxes back on one membership (excluding Plus Ups) each month.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your Platinum Card®.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only. Terms Apply.
  • $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit: CLEAR® Plus helps to get you to your gate faster at 50+ airports nationwide and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your Membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Card. CLEARLanes are available at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues.
  • Receive either a $100 statement credit every 4 years for a Global Entry application fee or a statement credit up to $85 every 4.5 year period for TSA PreCheck® application fee for a 5-year plan only (through a TSA PreCheck® official enrollment provider), when charged to your Platinum Card®. Card Members approved for Global Entry will also receive access to TSA PreCheck at no additional cost.
  • Shop Saks with Platinum: Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases in Saks Fifth Avenue stores or at saks.com on your Platinum Card®. That's up to $50 in statement credits semi-annually. Enrollment required.
  • Unlock access to exclusive reservations and special dining experiences with Global Dining Access by Resy when you add your Platinum Card® to your Resy profile.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: See Pay Over Time APR
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
Rewards Center

American Express Membership Rewards

If there is one card that is all about the benefits, it is the Amex Platinum card. The Amex Platinum card offers Gold status with both Marriott and Hilton hotels upon enrollment and offers access to 1,400+ airport lounges. Cardholders are also eligible for statement credits for Uber Cash, airline fees, Saks, prepaid hotels, Equinox, digital entertainment, CLEAR, and Walmart+.

Check out our head-to-head detailed comparison of the Amex Platinum card vs. the Hilton Aspire card.

The information regarding the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® card, click here.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Hilton Aspire card worth it?

If you’re someone who regularly stays in Hilton hotels and knows for certain that you’ll get outsized value out of the annual benefits, then yes, the card is definitely worth it.

Which Hilton card is best?

Technically speaking, the Hilton Aspire card is by far the best. It offers the best point earning on Hilton stays, the best elite status, and the best benefits.

However, it might not necessarily be the best Hilton card for you if you don’t want all of those benefits or prefer to pay a smaller (or no) annual fee.

How can I get a Hilton free night certificate?

Holding certain Hilton co-branded credit cards, like the Hilton Aspire card, will offer you a free night certificate that can be used at most Hilton hotels each year on your account anniversary.

How many Hilton Honors points do you need for a free night?

Hilton does not publish an award chart, so award prices can vary, but generally, you will need between 5,000 to 95,000 points for a free night depending on the quality and location of the hotel.

Jarrod West's image

About Jarrod West

Boasting a portfolio of over 20 cards, Jarrod has been an expert in the points and miles space for over 6 years. He earns and redeems over 1 million points per year and his work has been featured in outlets like The New York Times.

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