Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card Review
The Hilton Aspire Card from American Express is the premium card offered by Hilton. The Aspire card is packed with benefits and perks that every Hilton customer should be aware of. Is the card worth the $450 annual fee? Let’s find out down below in this review of the Hilton Honors Aspire Card.
The Aspire Card offers a nice variety of benefits to try and draw in frequent Hilton customers. We will break down each benefit to determine how valuable it will be to you.
The current sign-up bonus on the Aspire Card is 150k Hilton Honors points after spending $4k on purchases in the first 90 days of account opening. This is a equal to a value of $900 when valuing Hilton points at .6 cents/point.
The Aspire Card currently offers 14x Hilton Honors bonus points when you make eligible purchases on your card at participating hotels or resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
You will also receive 7x bonus points for flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com as well as car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies, and finally US restaurants. You will earn 3x points on all other purchases.
This may sound like an unbelievable amount of points, but keep in mind Hilton Honor Points are some of the least valuable points on the market today, with a current value of around .6 cents/point according to The Points Guy.
With the Aspire Card, you will receive complimentary Diamond Status. This is the only hotel credit card that offers the top status in a loyalty program simply for being a cardholder. Diamond Status will earn you 100% extra bonus points on all base points you earn, complimentary room upgrades, late checkout, and more. This is no doubt one of the best perks on the Aspire Card.
The Aspire Card offers a free weekend night reward each year, including the first year of holding the card. This weekend night reward can be used at just about any Hilton property worldwide, with just a few exceptions. You can receive a second weekend night reward after spending $60,000 on the card in a calendar year.
You will also be able to take advantage of a $250 airline fee credit with the airline of your choice. This credit is $50 more than what the American Express Platinum Card offers for airline fee credits. While American Express states the credit only covers fees such as baggage fees and flight change fees, check out how you can use this credit to pay for flight tickets here.
The next benefit from the Aspire Card is a $250 Hilton Resorts Credit that can be used for eligible purchases at participating Hilton Resorts.
Next up we have the $100 Hilton on-property credit for qualifying charges at participating Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts as well as Conrad Hotels & Resorts. You will need to book a 2 night minimum stay here in order to enjoy the credit.
Similar to other premium travel cards, you will receive a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership, granting you access to over 1,000 Priority Pass airport lounges around the world.
The Aspire Card also has no foreign transaction fees, car rental insurance, travel accident insurance, baggage insurance, and more you can find out about here.
SHOPPING & ENTERTAINMENT
The Aspire Card offers complimentary a ShopRunner membership which provides free 2 day shipping on eligible items from over 100+ online stores. The annual ShopRunner membership would normally cost you $79, so this is a nice benefit to take advantage of.
If you are looking for last minute dinner reservations for a special occasion, Broadway tickets, or access to any exclusive events, the Concierge service offered with the Aspire Card can help you out. I have yet to utilize this perk, but it is seems like it can be a valuable service.
Similar to any other premium travel card, the $450 annual fee is always intimidating. For some cards it can be difficult to justify such a large annual fee, but the Aspire Card easily surpasses the $450 annual fee in terms of value offered, especially in the first year with the 150k sign up bonus.
Speaking of the signup bonus, it would have been nice to see a slightly larger bonus, possibly of 175k-200k Hilton Honors points. The current bonus is not bad by any means, but considering the second tier Hilton Honors Ascend Card also has a sign-up bonus of 150k points, the Aspire Card could offer a bit more value.
IS THIS CARD RIGHT FOR YOU?
It is honestly hard to find any issues with the Aspire Card at the moment. The biggest drawback may be the fact that there is no way American Express and Hilton can offer such value from this card for much longer. I would imagine the card will cut back on some benefits in the future, or get an annual fee increase to compensate for the amount of value this card offers.
If you are able to utilize all of the benefits of the Aspire card in the first year, you are looking at a value of roughly $1500, which doesn’t even include Diamond Status and the free night reward.
With all that being said, the Hilton Aspire card is still just a hotel branded credit card. If you are a Marriott or Hyatt loyalist, or simply don’t stay in hotels all that often, this card will not provide much value.
If you do stay in hotels quite often and love the Hilton brand, this card is a no-brainer. You are essentially paying $450 to enjoy $1000+ of value.
It is safe to say the Hilton Aspire Card is the best hotel credit card on the market and is hard to resist if you stay at Hilton properties more than 1 or 2 times a year.
What do you think of the Hilton Aspire Card and is it in your wallet? Comment down below and let me know!
If the Hilton Aspire Card is right for you, click the “apply now” button below (referral link) and start earning Hilton Honors Points today!