Now May Be A Good Time To Get The Hilton Honors Surpass Card

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The Hilton Honors Surpass Card from American Express is one of the better hotel co-branded cards on the market because it offers all cardholders the most valuable mid-tier hotel status for a comparatively low annual fee and, following Amex’s recent announcement regarding welcome bonus earning periods, now may be a very good time to add this card to your wallet.

Hilton Honors Surpass Card From American Express

Annual Fee:

  • $95

Welcome Bonus:

  • Receive 125,000 Hilton Honors bonus points after spending $2,000 on the card in the first three months after opening your account*

*Cardholders approved by 31 May 2020 will have an additional 3 months in which to earn the welcome bonus.

Note: Per the offer terms, the welcome offer is not available to applicants who have or have had the Hilton Honors Surpass Card or the Hilton Honors Amex Ascend Card.

Earning Rates:

  • 12 points/dollar at Hilton properties worldwide
  • 6 points/dollar at US supermarkets
  • 6 points/dollar at US restaurants
  • 6 points/dollar at US gas stations
  • 3 points/dollar on all other spending

Key Benefits:

  • Receive Hilton Honors Gold status for as long as you hold the card
  • Earn Hilton Honors Diamond status after spending $40,000 in a calendar year
  • Earn a Free Weekend Night Reward from Hilton Honors after spending $15,000 in a calendar year
  • Get 10 free lounge visits to Priority Pass lounges each membership year
  • No foreign transaction fees

Why I Like The Hilton Honors Surpass Card

There are a number of reasons I like the Hilton Honors Surpass Card but there’s one key reason that trumps them all – if you’re not an all-out Hilton loyalist but still stay in Hilton properties from time to time (this describes me perfectly) this is a card that can make your stays cheaper and nicer.

The Hilton Gold status that this card bestows gives Hilton guests the following key benefits:

  1. Complimentary breakfast for the status holder + 1 guest sharing the same room
  2. Space available room upgrades
  3. Late check-out (subject to availability)
  4. Access to a 5th night free on award bookings

All three of these benefits can significantly improve a stay, and the complimentary breakfast can be a serious money saver and can repay the annual fee very quickly.

On top of this, the 12 points/dollar that this card earns at Hilton properties worldwide equates to a 4.8% rebate on all Hilton stays (based on my valuation of 0.4 cents/point) and the welcome bonus of 125,000 points equates to a gift of $500 based on the same valuation.

That’s pretty good going for a card that costs just $95/year.

Why I This May Be A Good Time To Apply

For most, this isn’t a great time to be applying for miles and points credit cards because a lot of people are cutting back on discretionary spending (or have fewer opportunities to spend) and it’s harder than normal to hit the spending targets that a lot of welcome bonuses demand…but Amex has just moved the goalposts in the favor of consumers.

American Express has announced that it is adding an extra 3 months to the time limits for earning welcome bonuses on all of its cards (for successful applications made by 31 May 2020) so applicants for the Hilton Honors Surpass Card now have 6 months to spend $2,000 in order to earn the 125,000 Hilton Honors points that the card is offering.

Not only is $2,000 a relatively low spending target for a welcome bonus as good as this one, but cardholders now also have 6 months in which to earn it – that’s approximately $334 of spending that would need to be put on the card per month.

Importantly, a lot of people are seeing their spending on groceries increasing right now and the Hilton Honors Surpass card offers 6 points/dollar for spending at US supermarkets. This may not be the best card to use for supermarket spending (these cards are) but the return being offered is still pretty decent…especially as it’s a return being earned as a cardholder progresses towards a big welcome bonus.

Most people should find it relatively straightforward to spend $334/month at US supermarkets in the next 6 months without going out of their way to spend more than they otherwise would and, at the end of that 6 months, they will have accumulated a minimum of 137,000 Hilton Honors points (welcome bonus + grocery spending) and they’ll hold a useful credit card too.

137,000 Hilton Honors points is enough points for a night at most of the top Hilton properties worldwide with points remaining for another night at a mid-tier property or, used economically, it’s enough points for a 3-night stay at a good mid-tier property.

What’s not to like about that? 🙂

Bottom Line

Right now there’s a good 125,000 bonus point welcome offer available on the Hilton Honors Surpass Card and new applicants are being given 6 months to hit the $2,000 spending target that the welcome offer requires – I’m not sure we’ve seen an easier target for a welcome offer on this card.

If you’re not a frequent guest at Hilton properties but still stay with Hilton from time to time then this is almost certainly a card that you should consider adding to your wallet and, considering the ease with which the current welcome offer can be earned (despite the current circumstances), now may be one of the best time to apply.

Click for more details on the Hilton Honors Surpass Card from American Express 

Featured image courtesy of American Express


    • The public offer terms say the following: Welcome Offer not available to applicants who have or have had the Hilton Honors Surpass Card or the Hilton Honors Amex Ascend Card.

      I’ve updated the blog post to include this language.


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