With the announcement of yet another Hilton credit card last week, it is hard to keep track of them all. Which credit card offers what? Which credit card is best for you? Too many choices, right?! Well, I have done the dirty work for you and compiled all the benefits of each card so you can compare.

Application links:

Hilton Credit Card Comparison

Card / Category
Citi Hilton HHonorsTM Visa Signature Card
Citi Hilton HHonorsTM Reserve Card
Hilton HHonors Surpass Card from American Express
Hilton HHonors Card from American Express
Bonus40,000 points after spending $1,000 in 4 months2 free weekend nights after spending $2,500 in 4 months50,000 points after spending $3,000 in 3 months40,000 points after spending $750 in 3 months + 25,000 points after spending $3,000 in 6 months (total of 65,000 points)rnrnOffer expires November 30, 2012
Annual FeeNone$95$75None
Hilton Hotel spend6 points per $1 spent10 points per $1 spent12 points per $1 spent6 points per $1 spent
Supermarkets, Drugstores, Gas stations spend3 points per $1 spentNo bonus (see all other spend)6 points per $1 spent6 points per $1 spent
Phone, Cable, TV, Internet spendNo bonus (see all other spend)No bonus (see all other spend)6 points per $1 spent6 points per $1 spent
Airline, Car Rental spendNo bonus (see all other spend)5 points per $1 spentNo bonus (see all other spend)No bonus (see all other spend)
All other spend2 points per $1 spent3 points per $1 spent3 points per $1 spent3 points per $1 spent
StatusSilverGoldrnrnEarn Diamond status after spending $40,000 each calendar yearGold statusnEarn Diamond status after spending $40,000 each calendar yearSilverrnrnEarn Gold status after spending $20,000 each calendar year
Foreign Transaction FeesYesNoYesYes
OtherThere is a non-public offer of 50,000 points which seems to work, however, no where on the application page does it tell you of this bonus. rnhttp://bit.ly/Dealswelike_HiltonVisa_50krnrnAccess to GLON awards (discounted award stays on 4, 5, and 6 night stays at category 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and WA hotelsfor Hilton Honor members with status - this card gives you Silver status)Earn a free weekend night annually if you spend $10,000 on the card in your cardmembership year. rnrnFree weekend nights are not valid at Hilton Grand Vacation Clubs, All-inclusive resorts, and Waldorf-Astoria hotels with no standard rooms offeredrnrnAccess to GLON awards (discounted award stays on 4, 5, and 6 night stays at category 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and WA hotels for Hilton Honor members with status - this card gives you Gold status)Access to AXON awards (discounted award stays on 4 night stays at category 5, 6, and 7 hotels)rnrnAccess to GLON awards (discounted award stays on 4, 5, and 6 night stays at category 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and WA hotels for Hilton Honor members with status - this is only available as long as you are Gold or Diamond status)Access to AXON awards (discounted award stays on 4 night stays at category 5, 6, and 7 hotels)rnrnAccess to GLON awards (discounted award stays on 4, 5, and 6 night stays at category 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and WA hotels for Hilton Honor members with status - this card gives you Silver status)

So hopefully the chart above will help you decide which one works best for your personal situation.

  • If you put a lot of spend on Hilton hotels, you’ll want to make sure to go for the card that gives you 10 points per dollar (Citi Hilton Reserve)
  • If you stay at Hilton hotels often, but not enough to earn status, then you’ll want to one that gives you automatic gold status – this will give you free breakfast, internet, and a potential upgrade (Citi Hilton Reserve)
  • If you won’t be putting much spend on your card and just looking for the bonus points, then go for one with no annual fee (Hilton Amex – no fee)
  • If you are staying at two weekend nights at expensive, high-end hotels in the next 12 months (i.e., Paris, London, Tahiti), go for the one with two free nights at any hotel (Citi Hilton Reserve)
  • If you use your points at at low category hotels, then go for the one that gives you the most bonus points (Hilton Amex Surpass – fee; or Hilton Amex – no fee)

The options are endless, but these scenarios might provide you with some guidance.

Related Posts from the Hilton program series:

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links for some of the credit cards. All of these are the best offers available. As always, thanks for your support and happy traveling on a deal!

  • David said,

    The Hilton Honors Surpass card also features the ability for the holder to achieve Diamond Status for spending $40,000 annually.

  • Rayn said,

    It worth mention that Amex cards give you access to AXON discounted redemption rate.
    Another reason to keep the free one just on hand.

  • PedroNY said,

    Great summary, just couple of points: AMEX Surpass gives you Diamond with $40,000 spending annually. Also both AMEX cards provide AXON6 and AXON7 awards are great way to save points on your redemptions.

    Best,

    PedroNY

  • dealswelike said,

    @PedroNY and Rayn – Thanks for reminding me about that. I’ve updated the spreadsheet.

  • bbtbphile said,

    Great summary. Thanks for doing the work for all of us!

  • dealswelike said,

    @bbtbphile – No problem, hope it helps!

  • aeronathan said,

    I’ve already got the regular Hilton AMEX and Citi plan to convert the Citi to the new reserve card. It doesn’t take much to get a lot more than $95 value out of Gold Status. Keeping the AMEX card gives me access to AXON awards and the nice 6 point per dollar bonus categories and why not since there’s no fee…

  • Benny said,

    This is great! Helps a lot. I’m more interested in the AXON awards so now I know which one to get.

  • Juan solano said,

    Handy input. :) Truly this post helps me out for selecting the right one. Thanks
    Top credit cards

  • Kevin said,

    Thanks for the input. I used your link for the regular AMEX card and think I was approved. Hard to tell though.

  • Con said,

    Thanks for the post! I used your link for the HH AMEX Card on Saturday and received my card in the mail today (Monday)! My brother applied for a 40K HH AMEX the day before your post and tried to get AMEX to match the 50K offer and they said no since this was a targeted offer. Any advice on what to do? Thanks!

  • David said,

    So here is my question. Can you apply for the no fee Amex and the no fee Visa on the same day, receive 90K and just get one check into your credit record?

  • dealswelike said,

    @David – Unfortunately not. However, many have had luck by applying for the two different Citi Visa cards (using two different browsers) and just getting on hit on their credit report. This doesn’t work with Amex, just Citi (similar to the American Airlines citi cards – business and personal).

  • David said,

    Got it, but I still can apply for two free credit cards and get 100 HHonors points (latest offer I have seen) :-). Thanks for your lightning speed response

  • dealswelike said,

    @David – You can absolutely apply for both, but suggest you apply on the same day at the same time so both are approved. Anytime :)

  • Jeremy said,

    $125 is the tipping point on Hilton reservation spending on the 10 points per dollar Citi Reserve card and the 6 points per dollar no annual fee Amex (not taking redemption into account). $125 on the Citi nets 1,250 points. $125 on the Amex also nets 1,250 points (750 + the 500 point Amex booking bonus). If your stay is one night and less than $125 the no fee Amex makes more sense. If your stay is $125 or more the Citi Reserve makes more sense.

    With the Amex Surpass $500 is the tipping point before Citi spend makes more sense. Same math with 9 points per dollar plus the 500 booking bonus versus 10 points on the Citi Reserve.

  • David said,

    I got My Hilton American Express, fulfilled my minimum spend, but now I am wondering whether I should use it to maximize the 6 point categories: gas, supermarket, drugstore, cable and mobile phone bills, or should i use my Chase Freedom instead? What are “stand alone” drugstores, supermarket, and gas stations? Does it mean that Shell, Wholefoods, and CVS do not count? Thank you!

  • dealswelike said,

    @David – “stand alone” with the silly marketing wording that I was required to include. But let me get clarification do you.

  • David said,

    Confirmed. I applied on the same day and at the same time (two browsers, but not sure if that mattered) for the HHonors Amex and the Citi Signature cards, both with $0 annual fee. I was approved and both cards gave me the signup bonus (90,000 points). The Citi Signature will stay at home, I will test the Amex now for special categories (those providing 6 bonus points per $)

  • dealswelike said,

    @David – Good to hear! Thanks for sharing.

  • Wade said,

    @dealswelike “If you put a lot of spend on Hilton hotels, you’ll want to make sure to go for the card that gives you 10 points per dollar (Citi Hilton Reserve)”

    Why wouldn’t I choose the “Hilton HHonors Surpass Card from American Express” and get 12 points per $?

    Great info here,thanks!

  • mark said,

    It looks like the AMEX hilton card does not give you the 6 points anymore on supermarkets, gas and pharmacy. On the application link, it does not mention it. The 6 points is only for Hotel. I wonder if they took away the supermarket bonus for existing card holders also? Can you confirm as it is mentioned on a couple spots on your website. Thanks

  • dealswelike said,

    @Mark – there has been some conversation this week over the bonuses on the two hilton cards and it looks like the bonuses will still be in affect until May 1, 2013.

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