Citi Hilton/Reserve will be automatically converted into Amex Hilton/Surpass

We’ve known that Amex will be the exclusive issuer of Hilton cobranded card since 2018. And Citibank has stopped accepting new applications for Citi Hilton and Citi Hilton Reserve credit cards. So what will happen to the current Citi Hilton cards? People believe there are two possibilities:

  • Both cards will be converted into Citi’s other credit cards, presumably Citi ThankYou Preferred/Premier credit cards
  • Citibank will sell all the accounts to American Express, just like the Costco card, and card holders will get corresponding cards from Amex

Now we have information from Citi indicating the second option will be the case.

One of our authors applied for Citi Hilton Reserve a year ago and today he tried to convert his card into Citi Hilton card after the Anniversary Free Night Award posted. The service representative informed him that they will no longer accepting conversion request of Hilton cards. The reason is that all current Citi Hilton and Citi Hilton Reserve cards will be automatically converted into American Express cards in this December. The service representative was very certain about the change, and confirmed that his Citi Hilton Reserve cards will be converted into Amex Hilton Surpass card. Presumably Citi Hilton to Amex Hilton as well.

It does explained what Citibank did a while back. Just like when Amex sold Costco card holders to Citibank, Citi was sure that they would sell Hilton card accounts to Amex. They stopped accepting new applications, so that they won’t pay any Hilton points and nights they are holding to clients that will soon be competitor’s.

For current Citi Hilton cards holders, here are some suggestions:

  • If you only have Hilton cards from Citi’s card portfolio, it might be a good idea to apply for another Citi card, if you’d like to stay as a Citi card holder. It’s been glowingly difficult to get your first Citi card nowadays.
  • If you are a card churner, holding one or two Citi Hilton cards, but still have available Amex credit card slot(s), maybe you can try to apply for one or two more by December. It’s possible that you may able to get more than 5 credit cards after this change.
  • Also, if you don’t have corresponding Amex cards at the moment, applying one might be a good idea if you still interested in the sign-up bonus. Amex may not offering you this once in a life time bonus to you anymore, even if you got your card via this conversion.

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