Updated on January 22, 2017
Don't let your points expire! I recently got an expiration alert about my Hilton HHonors points (I usually stay at SPG hotels so its not surprising). Each program has different rules but here I will tell you the best ways to prevent your Hilton Hotel points from expiring.
Hilton's rules: you need at least 1 eligible point earning activity every 12 months and your points will not expire. Otherwise they ‘may' expire after 12 months. Most of these tips will apply to other hotel programs too.
NOT MANY HILTON POINTS? Order some magazines.
If you have a small amount of Hilton points, it is probably not worth the cost or effort of the below methods, so I suggest you use your points to order a couple magazines on MagsForPoints.com.
1) Stay organized with free email alerts
Let the free website www.AwardWallet.com do the work for you. I use it to keep track of all my miles and point and it automatically sends me an email alert 3 months before my Hilton points are set to expire so I can do something about it. Use this coupon code to upgrade to a “AwardWallet Plus” account for free. Enter the code “THEREWARDBOSS” and you will be upgraded to a “Plus” account which has some additional perks (first time Plus members only).
2) Earn points when making a purchase on your Hilton sponsored credit card
If you have the card already, this is the cheapest and fastest option (and what I will be doing). When you buy something you earn Hilton miles and you will reset the 12 month period. Don't have one? Find the latest Hilton credit card offers here.
3) Transfer Points
Another fast and easy way is to transfer points from American Express Membership Rewards, Citi Thank You Points, or Diner's Club points. You can also transfer miles or rail points into HHonors Points from partners including Virgin Atlantic, Flying Blue, Hawaiian Airlines, Iceland Air, LifeMiles (Avianca), Miles & More (Lufthansa), Olympic Air, SriLankan Airlines, Olympic Air, Ok Cashbag, and Multiplus. Keep in mind each program requires a minimum of points that need to be transferred and you may be better off buying points for $10 (see below).
4) Eat at a Restaurant or Go Shopping
Get points for eating out or shopping. There are two separate free programs:
- Hilton Dining – sign up and add a couple credit cards to your profile. Each time you dine at a participating restaurant, you'll get some miles.
- Hilton Shop To Earn – Use the links to click through to your favorite online stores and you'll earn points for each purchase. For example, make a small purchase at Staples and you'll earn some points.
- Hilton Honors Shopping – A Hilton shopping mall where you can redeem your points for merchandise. Do not use this, its just for spending points. And you will be getting ripped off. Would you rather a $4000 value hotel stay or a $400 value PS4 Pro? They cost about the same in points.
Both programs are fast and easy. You can use any credit card…it doesn't have to be a Hilton card. I never look at the list of participating restaurants. Since there are so many I often get a few points here and there which is all you need to reset the 12 month period. If you need the points quickly, then check the list and go eat there. Most hotel and airlines have the same program run by the same company (you can google xxxx hotel dining and you can earn the points or miles of your choice).
5) Shop with a Hilton partner business
This is an easy one since you are most likely spending money on these things anyway — renting a car, sending flowers (rent a car, send flowers, etc). See which retailers participate here.
6) Buy some points
For just $10 (used to be $12.50), you can buy 1,000 Hilton points which will keep your points active for another 12 months. This is not a good deal and I would not recommend it normally, but its a quick and hassle free way to get the job done. See the Hilton website for more details.
7) Take some surveys / read marketing info
Click on Hilton's more ways to earn points page. Enroll in e-Miles. Keep in mind this can can take time, be a hassle and you may not like the email messages or giving them your personal information. So, if your points are expiring soon, skip this one. You'll need to earn a total of 500 e-Miles miles which will convert into 1,000 Hilton points. They will give you 25 e-Miles just for signing up and 200 more when you complete 5 or more opportunities. After opening a new account, I had 7 opportunities (1 which gets 0 miles), the rest added up to 50 miles. More earning opportunities get added after you finish the first ones. Therefore, I would not be able to earn enough miles to get my Hilton points right away (i.e. 25 + 200 + 50 = 275 e-Miles… while 500 points are needed).
8) Stay at a Hilton
If you book a room with Hilton.com (paid by cash or with your points), this will reset the 12 month clock and prevent your points from expiring. This option is not for me because I rarely pay cash for a hotel and I don't like to waste points on a stay I don't need. Unless you are planning to stay to stay at a Hilton, I don't recommend this option. Also, incidentals (snacks, meals, etc) while at the hotel will only generate points if you are staying there, so you can't walk in and buy a bottle of water just to get a couple of points. I have, however, been to the restaurant at a W Hotel and received Starwood points (I had to make a special request at the front desk) without staying there, but Hilton's rules don't allow that.
Check out the Hilton discount promo codes to save on your next stay.
9) Donate points to a charity
This is not cheap, but if you believe in the cause, you can donate a minimum of 10,000 points and this will reset your 12 month period. If you wanted to buy 10,000 points, it would cost you $0.01 each for a total of $100. For every 10,000 points you donate, Hilton will donate a whopping $25 (not so generous)! Click here for more details.
and one more… which I'm not including in the official list:
10) The most expensive way!
I definitely do not recommend this but buying a timeshare from Hilton will keep your points from expiring. I personally do not think timeshares are a good idea so I won't be posting their phone number or link for this one.
The best options are #1 to #6, in that order.