The Hilton Honors, or HHonors for short, is the guest loyalty program of Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc., the largest global hospitality company in the world that manages and franchises – among many other brands – the internationally famous Hilton chain of hotels. Launched in its present form in March 2011, the first year of the new program was so remarkably successful, it saw a significant 79 per cent increase in membership in, of all places, China. Surely that meant they’ve done something right, that the HHonors program offers something which loyal patrons of Hilton Worldwide really wanted or liked. In the case of the Chinese HHonors membership, the right thing Hilton did was refine its brand identity for them, going so far as to craft a Chinese identity and Chinese names for their hotels in the country, even putting up a dedicated Chinese-language website for their local HHonors members. That’s a great deal of dedication, and it shows in how much Hilton Honors have grown over the years internationally. If you’re a traveler who frequents and prefers any hospitality provider under the Hilton umbrella, you can take your experience to a whole other level by joining the HHonors program. Here’s a rundown on what to expect.
How to Join
Graduate from being a mere Guest of Hilton Worldwide and become a Member by signing up for Hilton Honors. Simply head on over to their dedicated website and sign up by clicking “Join”. Now it’s only a simple matter of filling up their required basic information, confirm your e-mail, and you’ll be a Member before you know.
Benefits from the Start
As a newly minted member, you already enjoy several perks. How can you say no to the ability to digitally check in through your electronic devices? Speaking of your gadgets, as a member staying at non-resort charge Hilton brand properties, the standard WiFi charge is now free! But of course the real meat and potatoes of any customer loyalty program is the system of earning points towards free or added special services, in this case earning free nights to stay! This is only the tip of the iceberg though.
Let’s take a closer look at this next.
Scoring Points in Earning Points
So how about learning to earn HHonors points? Quite obviously you get points for choosing the Hilton hospitality, right? Well to elaborate, in most member hotel and resort in the Hilton portfolio, you’re sure to earn 10 base points for every US Dollar spent, not just on your room itself, but on every single thing you spend on during your stay, like making phone calls and getting room service. And we’re talking lots of brands here; not just the 500-plus strong line of Hilton hotels and resorts in 78 countries, but other big names in hospitality like Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, Embassy, Hampton, Homewood Suites and so much more.
But wait, there’s more! Cliché aside, aside from points for free hotel and resort stays, you can also earn flyer and railway miles for your favored loyalty programs. Hilton Worldwide is partnered with a dizzying number of international travel partners. If you’re in such a program, be it for United, American Airlines, Cathay Pacific, British Airways, Virgin, and so much more all over the globe, chances are you’ll get more miles for it by staying at a Hilton. These travel partners mean you also earn HHonors points whenever you rent a car, go on a cruise or even just use your mobile while roaming. These include established names like Avis, Europcar, and CruisesOnly.
Membership Level Up!
Another thing you should know about your Hilton Honors membership is it can still get better! From your starting Blue-level membership you’ll be able to upgrade your status for even more bonuses and benefits. So as soon as you have, in one calendar year, done either four individual stays or stayed a total of 10 nights, then you have just moved on to Elite HHonors status. As an Elite member, every stay of five nights or more nets you a free 5 th night! So if you stay a total of 20 nights then your 5th, 10th , 15th and 20th nights are free! Elite members go from Silver, Gold to finally Diamond tier. For instance, at Silver membership you now have a 15% bonus in points rewarded at any given time and gain complementary access to your accommodation’s fitness center or health club.
The bonuses and discounts just get bigger and better at higher levels. Gold membership is yours at either 20 stays/40 nights OR 75,000 base points in a year; Diamond level is at a year’s worth of 30 stays/60 nights OR 120,000 points earned. Then again you can get Elite status much faster by getting a HHonors Credit Card! Now you also earn points when paying your groceries or bills too.
Big Offers and Redemption Auctions
We’ve already learned so much about what you can get for your HHonors membership, but the surprises just keep on coming! As a member you get a crack at Hilton’s special offers and redemption experiences. Right now, these offers include a Big World Sale, special packages at the Waldorf Astoria and Conrad, Fun Packages for the Family or Leisure getaways of your choice with a $50 daily credit, and even special family rates if you happen to be an active or retired American or Canadan serviceman. You can also try your hand at special package auctions where you can bid your stock of HHonor points against other bidding members to win special trips ranging from concerts at Hilton venues, or a Karate Birthplace Package stay at the Hilton Okinawa Chatan Resort that includes free private karate lessons or a chance to catch the US team trials at Indianapolis from the local Hilton Garden Inn.
It’s pretty amazing just how much Hilton Worldwide can give and give for the members of their Hilton Honors loyalty program. Just goes to show that when you go with the world’s biggest name in hospitality, you’ll end up feeling just as big. If you’re a frequent guest of the Hilton brands then what are you waiting for, really? There is honor when you become a member of Hilton Honors.