Getting Approved for Hilton Bonus With Just Hours to Spare!

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Honors™ Surpass® Card from American Express  Is No Longer Available through this Site.

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In a few hours the biggest Hilton Amex co-branded credit card sign-up bonuses I’ve ever seen will be gone. Hopefully we see them at these levels again at some point, but I have no idea. Not one to just hope for a second chance down the road, my mom decided to pull the trigger just under the wire this morning on one of the HHonors cards. We waited until the last minute to apply both because we’ve been super busy, and also because they are just finishing up a spending promo for another card so we wanted to space them out. 


Deciding Which Hilton Card to Apply For:


Perhaps surprisingly, in her case we decided that the Hilton HHonors™ Card with the sign-up bonus points after spending $1,000 and no annual fee was the better play over the Hilton HHonors™ Surpass® Card with the larger point bonus after spending $3,000 and $75 annual fee. I’ll be honest, it would be hard for me to personally ignore a  bonus point option, but I’m confident we made the right call for her situation.

Card Type Annual Fee Sign-Up Bonus Elite Status
Hilton HHonors Surpass Amex $75 HHonors Gold
Hilton HHonors Amex $0 HHonors Silver

My mom doesn’t have a specific redemption in mind for these HHonors points, though she has a general idea how the points will be useful as they are fans of the Hampton Inn chain. Their retirement income is relatively fixed so avoiding annual fees and larger spending requirements is generally a good thing. She won’t likely be putting huge amounts of charges on the cards so the higher bonus categories on the Surpass card won’t make a big difference. Also since they don’t have a specific use in mind, the Gold status that would come with the Surpass card probably isn’t particularly useful over the Silver status with the no annual fee card.

What pushed the scales to the Hilton Amex was that it is seemingly common for people to be given offers from Amex to simply upgrade their no-annual-fee Hilton Amex to the Surpass Amex with the associated bonus points, so that could be an easy path for her to take in the future if she wants more Hilton bonus points and higher Hilton elite status.

For now the no annual fee and lower spending requirement that come with the Hilton Amex are the perfect fit…and she got instant approval. Go, Mom!

Anyone else just squeak in under the wire or also decide the no annual fee version was right for them?

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    • Double congrats and double thanks! So the travel dreamer in me has to ask, where do you plan on using the points?!

  1. I believe in the past I have had the no fee card but is there a way to find out or can I get it again?

  2. We tried (using your link)….”pending decision” for my husband for the no-annual fee version. He’s had the Surpass for years and years, and I currently hold the no-annual fee which was a downgrade from the Surpass. We’ll see what happens. I understand that as long as we applied by today, we’re still go for the promo even if it takes a few days to get the approval??

    We have a huge Viking River cruise trip planned to China next year, and I’m hoarding Hilton points to pay for any extra hotels we will do. (I know hoarding is a no-no, but hey–sometimes you have to!)

    • Denise, yes as long as you applied by today you should be eligible for the increased bonus if/when you are approved. Viking Cruise sounds amazing – good strategy!

      • Update: late this afternoon, we got the approval email for the card. Don’t know what the delay was due to–my guess is number of Amex cards. That makes 5 for my husband. I think we now have or have had all Hilton cards offered by both Amex and Citi!

  3. I tried to use your link this morning to apply but it would go to an error page each time. I then logged in to American Express and was able to pull up the offer, through their website. I tried your link again before applying but I still got an error page, so I applied straight through Amex.

    • Thanks for trying and good job getting in under the wire! One of the links was very browser temperamental for me too.

  4. DH was approved instantly for 75K but mine for 100K is pending. 🙁 UGH I will feel mightily bummed if I don’t get approved and will, obviously, wish we would have had DH apply for Surpass instead of me. Hoping for good news soon!

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