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Yesterday, Hilton announced a slew of changes to their loyal program, HHonors. First and foremost, they are changing the name to just Honors, which according to InsideFlyer, is because the leading “H” was deemed unnecessary and apparently caused confusion when it came to pronouncing the program’s name. Let’s dive into the other 5 changes, and see what they mean for consumers.
Change 1: Points & Money
First off, Hilton is changing the way they charge Points + Cash redemptions. Rather than saying a standard room Cash+Points redemption is 20,000 points plus $200, there will now be a sliding scale. You could use 10,000 points and $300 or 30,000 points and $100, for example. Additionally, rooms will not cost more than before, and most will actually cost less during the hotel’s low season.
Change 2: Points Pooling
Next, and probably my favorite change, is the ability to pool points with up to 10 people. It seems these people do NOT need to be family or live at the same address. According to One Mile at a Time, people can share up to 500,000 points a year, and have up to 2,000,000 points shared with them. This is great for Nick and me, as we each have about 150,000 points, and having a collected bank will allow us to book longer stays easier.
Change 3: Use points for Amazon purchases
With the rollout of the new program, you will also be able to use Honors points for Amazon purchases. This is a nice add, but something I won’t probably use. I have a feeling that the Honors point to dollar conversion isn’t going to be great, so most consumers would be wise to stay away from this option. Happy to be proven wrong though!
Change 4: Diamond status extension
Finally, and something Diamond members will appreciate, is the ability to put your status on hold. Maybe one year you stay 150 nights, and the next you have a new child (or two if you’re Ian!), and aren’t traveling a ton for work. Hilton will let you extend your Diamond status by one year as a one-time benefit, which I think is a cool feature.
Change 5: No more award chart
Referencing point one, Hilton is saying that point redemption costs won’t exceed the current top tier (95,000 points per night), but it seems they are actually removing the award chart entirely, according to Doctor of Credit, which will potentially allow for dynamic pricing (think New Year’s Eve in Times Square) and could also potentially mean a devaluation in the near future.
Overall, I think a lot of these changes are positive, as they bring flexibility to the program. I am worried that the removal of the award chart will allow Hilton to increase prices without notice (like Delta), which in the end isn’t great for the consumer.
Are you excited about the changes to the Honors program? Let us know below!
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