Review: Hilton Credit Card

Hilton hotels offer two American Express credit cards that allow you to get an instant decision on your application “in as little as 30 seconds.” It’s safe to say that you will have to have good credit for the decision on your application to be a “yes.”

Both Hilton cards allow you to earn HHonors points on all your card purchases:

  • The standard Hilton Honors Card from American Express has no annual fee. It rewards you with 7 points per dollar on Hilton hotel purchases and 5 points per dollar at U.S. restaurants, supermarkets and gas stations. Any other purchases with get you 3 points per dollar charged to the card. If you spend at least $1000 with the card in the first three months of having it, you’ll earn 50,000 bonus points. Having this card also upgrades you to Silver status at Hilton hotels, with the option to move up to Gold if you spend more than $20,000 with the card within a year.
  • The Hilton Honors Surpass Card has an annual fee of $75, but that fee is waived for the first year you have the card. Its point reward formula is as follows: 12 points per dollar on Hilton purchases, 6 points on purchases at U.S. restaurants, supermarkets and gas stations, and 3 points per dollar on everything else. You can earn 75,000 bonus points with this one, but you have to spend at least $3000 in the first three months to get it. You also get Gold status with Hilton automatically when you get this card, which you can upgrade to Diamond if you spend at least $40,000 with the card within a year.

The interest rate range for both of these cards is 16.24% to 20.24% — your rate will depend on your credit history.

While the Hilton credit cards are good for people who already have a relationship with Hilton and who travel frequently, it might not be the best idea for those who do not travel so often. In addition, you will need a decent credit history to get approval for this card, instant or otherwise.