Summary: Hilton is selling hotel points for $25 per 5,000 points through September 16th (they normally sell for $50). Buying points for hotel nights can lead to 85% savings vs paying with cash. Real-life examples below.
What’s the deal?
Hotels reward their customers with points for each stay, similar to airlines. Those points can later be used for free nights. Rather than earning the points by staying at hotels, it’s also possible to buy the points directly from the hotel chain and use them towards free nights. Often it’s a better deal than paying cash outright. Hilton is currently selling their points at a 30-50% discount through September 16th. And the cheapest hotels cost 5,000 points a night, which you can buy for as little as $25.
How much can I save?
It depends on the cash price and the number of points required for a reward stay. We found some hotels where the savings are 85% (see the examples below). Depending on the hotel, it costs between 5,000 and 95,000 points per night. But note that you can only buy 80,000 points per year. There are some hotels requiring 85,000–95,000 points per night (eg. Conrad Maldives). Some accounts are restricted to 30% or 40% discount. Most people can purchase the points at 50% discount.
Show some proof.
Oman: Hilton Salalah for 5,000 pts. vs $142 = 82% savings
Egypt: Hilton Alexandria for 5,000 pts. vs $187 = 86% savings
Boston: Hilton Back Bay for 40,000 pts. vs $402 = 51% savings
New York: Homewood Suites for 70,000 pts. vs $492 = 29% savings
Thailand: Conrad Koh Samui for 80,000 pts. vs $701 = 43% savings
How do I find participating hotels?
You can use points to book a free night at all Hilton participating hotels. Just go to Hilton.com and search for a place that you want to visit and select “HHonors Points” on the right.
Next to each hotel, you can compare the cash price to the points price. 5,000 points will cost $25, which means any hotel requiring 5,000 points will cost you $25, a hotel that’s 10,000 points will cost $50 etc.
Use the table above to compare the prices. If the cash price is more than the dollar value in the table, you’re getting a better deal through buying points. Keep in mind that Hilton will quote the price before taxes for cash bookings (and there are no taxes for points bookings!), so click through to the last page to see the total price.
How do I book?
Confirm if the hotel is available to book with points on the Hilton website, then go to Hilton’s “Buy, gift and transfer” site and purchase the required number of points. Go to Hilton again when the points post in your account (this can take up to 24hrs) and then book. Voila!
What’s the catch?
The only catch is you need a Hilton HHonors account or you will only be able to take advantage of this offer after 90 days. We recommend signing up for a Hilton HHonors account now if you’re planning any hotel stays for 2017. Accounts that are not 90 days old are excluded from the offer.
What if I just signed up?
If your account is less than 90 days old, make sure to sign up for our newsletter and we’ll let you know about any promotions in the future. Hilton has had a sale three times this year, so we expect it to happen again in a few months.
Hilton point sales in 2016 (so far):
- May 16th-June 17th: 100% bonus (buy one, get one free)
- July 14th-July 18th: 80% bonus (buy 5, get 4 free)
- August 19th-September 16th: 50% discount (buy 2, pay for one). Some account are restricted to 30% or 40% discount.
There were similar sales in 2015, so we believe Hilton will keep putting on similar sales through 2017.
Can it get any better?
Actually, yes. Hilton offers the 5th night free for elite customers. All you need to do is complete 4 stays (or 10 nights) in a calendar year (and reward stays are included!). After this, you will get 5th night free if you book for 5 nights — a 20% discount. If you’re an elite member of another hotel program, you can also match your status to Hilton here.
Above is an example of Hampton by Hilton in Kraków, Poland for 5 nights. The regular cost is 5,000 pts. per night, but elite members get the 5th night free so it’s breaks down to 4,ooo pts. per night ($20). A cash rate for those dates is 284PLN = $73 USD per night. As an elite member, 5 nights will cost $100 if paying with points or $364 if paying with cash = 73% discount.
Now I have a cheap hotel. How about flights?
Check out Flightfox. We use real human expertise and deep technical analysis to find you the best possible flights.