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Through January 31, 2013, you can get a 33% bonus when you transfer your American Express Membership Reward points to the Hilton Honors program. While I typically do not recommend transferring Amex points to hotel programs as the transfer ratio is not the best (when compared to airline programs), this is a good promotion for those of you interested in redeeming for Hilton hotels.
During this time, 1,000 Amex points = 2,000 Hilton points. To redeem for a top category hotel (non-Waldrof Astoria), it will require 50,000 Hilton points. With this promotion, that means 25,000 Amex points can get you a free night stay. For a $500 hotel or more, this could absolutely be a great value. You just need to see how you value your Amex points and how you typically redeem. For a free night in the Maldives, for example, this is great!
UPDATE: Through December 29th, there is actually an opportunity to get even more Hilton points out of your Amex Membership Reward points. Read this post to learn how.
Additionally, if you have status or one of the Amex branded Hilton credit cards, you have access to some discounted awards as well, which can make those transferred Amex points go even further. You can read more about these discounted awards here:
- Utilizing Hilton’s GLON / VIP Awards
- Utilizing Hilton’s AXON Awards for a Better Redemption
- Hilton’s AXON vs. GLON Awards – Which one is Best?
You do not have to register for this promotion, it is already hard coded in when you transfer your points from the Membership Rewards site. You will also receive those bonus points along with the base points transferred, they will not come at a future time.
If you are currently short of Amex points, but know you will be increasing your point balance in the near future and want to take advantage of this promotion, you can actually do a Membership Rewards point advance. Depending on the card you have determines the amount you can advance in a calendar year: Amex Platinum = 60,000 points; Amex Gold = 15,000 points; Amex Green = 5,000 points. Even if you have multiple cards you can only cash advance to the amount of the highest card you have. You must earn the number of points advanced back within 12 months or you will be charged purchase points transaction rate, which can be quite expensive. To do this though, you must have been a card member for at least 6 months and your account must be in good standing.