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American Express Membership Rewards points continue to be one of my favorite points currencies. With a number of different transfer partners, these points offer amazing returns while transfer to a whole host of airlines around the world. While the list of hotel transfer partners may not be as impressive, there clearly still remain some great opportunities.
American Express periodically offers transfer bonuses with some of their partners. During this time window, you can get more than the standard transfer ratios with their partners. One such transfer bonus showed up on my account for Hilton Hotels.
Membership Rewards Points and Hilton Honors
After American Express took over the entire Hilton co-brand portfolio, the standard transfer rate for Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors has been at set at 1:2. Now, Amex is once again offering a limited time transfer bonus. During this period, you’l’ earn 50% extra. For each Amex point you transfer, you’ll earn 3 Hilton Honors points.
1:3 Transfer Ratio
This limited time offer to transfer Membership Rewards points to Hilton Honors at a 1:3 ratio ends on April 14, 2020.
Hilton’s absurd award pricing is often a source of criticism and expectedly so. Just like with Delta SkyMiles, you can find some outrageous pricing while trying to redeem Hilton Honors points, especially for premium rooms. However, you can still redeem base level rooms at top tier Hilton Hotels for 95,000 Hilton Honors points in most cases.
Given that situation, this presents an excellent opportunity to redeem Hilton Honors points by transferring points from American Express. With the 1:3 ratio, each night will only cost you 32,000 points as you’ll earn 96,000 Hilton Honors points for each 32,000 points that you transfer.
Also, if you have elite status, you can make the deal sweeter with the 5th night free benefits. For redeeming the 5th night free at a top tier Hilton, you’ll need 95,000 x 4 = 380,000 Hilton Honors points, as the 5th night will be free. With this transfer bonus, you’ll need to transfer 127,000 Membership Rewards points and you’ll get them converted to 381,000 Hilton Honors points.
Which top tier Hilton properties can you stay at? There are plenty around the world, but I’ll list some of my favorites.
Beach Villa at Conrad Maldives for 95,000 Hilton/32,000 Amex Points
King Reef Villa with Pool at Waldorf Astoria Maldives for 120,000 Hilton/40,000 Amex Points
1 Bedroom Tropical Island Pool Villa at Conrad Koh Samui for 95,000 Hilton/32,000 Amex Points
King Guest Room at Hilton Molino Stucky Venice for 70,000 Hilton/24,000 Amex Points
Terrace View Room at Waldorf Asotria Maui (Grand Wailea) for 95,000 Hilton/32,000 Amex Points
Earning Hilton Points
In addition to staying at Hiltons frequently, you can earn Hilton Honors points really quickly with Amex’s co-branded portfolio of Hilton Credit Cards.
Earning Membership Rewards Points
Amex’s portfolio of Membership Rewards earning cards gives your plenty of options to earn points, whether it’s for personal or business spend.
The Pundit’s Mantra
As you can see, there are plenty of redemption options with this transfer bonus. Given how expensive these rooms are, you’ll pretty much ensure that you get a fantastic redemption value in terms of cents per point when you transfer at book at high end Hilton Hotels. If you simply transfer 40,000 Membership Rewards points, you can stay at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives for a room that costs $4,559, that’s an amazing 11.4 cents per point!
In spite of a few drawbacks, I still love the Hilton Honors program due to its global footprint and amazing transfer options with American Express. While your redemption values may fluctuate with availability and pricing, this transfer bonus offers a great opportunity to book some really awesome Hilton Hotels, especially if you can find a base room available during peak season.
How do you plan on leveraging this amazing transfer bonus? Which is your dream Hilton stay that you want to book with points? Let us know in the comments section.