The Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card Review
2023.2 Update: The new offer is 150k. Offer ends on 4/5.
2022.11 Update: The current offer is the usual 130k offer (first year annual fee not waived).
2022.8 Update2: The new offer is 130k+first year annual fee waived. It’s slightly better than the 150k (AF not waived) offer.
- 150k offer: earn 150,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend $3,000 within the first 6 months. The recent best offer is 150k+$150 or 150k+50k.
- We value Hilton Honors Points at 0.4 cents/point (Hotel Points Value), click here to see how many points are required for a free night. So the 150k welcome offer is worth about $600.
- Earn 12 Hilton Honors points per $1 spent on hotel stays within Hilton Portfolio; 6 points on US restaurants, US supermarkets, and US gas stations; 3 points on other purchases.
- Complimentary Hilton Gold status for cardholder. Upgrade to Hilton Diamond status when you make $40,000 or more in purchases each calendar year.
- One Free Night (FN) Reward at a hotel or resort in the Hilton portfolio after spending $15,000 in purchases on the card in a calendar year.
- 10 free Priority Pass Select (PPS) lounge passes each year. You can use them either on card holder or guests.
- With this credit card, you can get access to Amex Offers, which often offers very good discounts at some stores. In the past we have seen offers like: Spend $15 or more and get $5 back at Walmart; Spend $75 or more and get $25 back on Amazon.com.
- Refer a friend: You can earn 20,000 bonus Hilton points for every approved account you refer, up to 80,000 Hilton Points per calendar year.
- No foreign transaction fee.
- $95 annual fee, NOT waived for the first year.
Recommended Application Time
- Note that AmEx has the following policy: If you currently or have previously held a specific AmEx credit card, you will not be eligible for the welcome bonus offer. So if you want to squeeze out the highest rewards from credit cards, you should apply for the welcome offer first, and then take the upgrade offer, and then possibly go on upgrading/downgrading.
- You can only get the welcome bonus once in a lifetime, so be sure to apply when the historical highest offer appears.
- AmEx doesn’t care about the number of hard pulls.
- You can try to apply for it when you have a credit history of 6 months.
- Only 2 AmEx credit cards can be approved within 90 days, but this rule does not apply to charge cards. Multiple cards approved in the same day will only have one Hard Pull.
- You can keep at most 5 AmEx credit cards, but this rule does not apply to charge cards.
The welcome offer is very nice, so it’s worth applying for. If you have a lot of spending, it can be a good choice to spend $15k on this card. You already get 3x Hilton points on every spending, which is worth ~1.2% in return. Plus you will earn a free night, which can be worth about $250, that’s an additional ~1.7% in return. The total return is then ~2.9%.
Related Credit Cards
- AmEx Hilton
- AmEx Hilton Surpass (this post)
- AmEx Hilton Aspire
- AmEx Hilton Business
Recommended Downgrade Options
- Click here to check AmEx application status.
- AmEx reconsideration backdoor number: 877-399-3083. The “real” backdoor number of Amex is well protected. Different from Chase, the representatives from this AmEx reconsideration backdoor number only have the right to help you submit requests.
Historical Offers Chart
Note: in 2019 there was a 130k+1FN welcome offer. The FN part is not shown in the chart. The latter part of 150k+50k offer is also not shown, because the spending requirement is too high.