Forbes has partnered with The Points Guy for our coverage of credit card products. Forbes and The Points Guy may receive a commission from card issuers. Some of the offers below may no longer be available.
When I first entered the world of miles and points several years ago, I never thought that a credit card could offer enough value to justify a high annual fee. The occasional $ 95 was no problem. But $ 450? No chance. I don’t care what you sell.
Little by little, my attitude changed. I read why Mommy Points thinks paying annual credit card fees over $ 500 might not be crazy for families. And, as I counted the value of recurring credits, perks, and signup bonuses that many cards offered, I finally concluded that some might be worth it. However, it is rare to find one like the Aspire Hilton Honors American Express Card it is so obviously worth the annual membership fee that I will definitely keep it year after year. The menu offers excellent Continuing value for families, and if I had to pick one high annual fee card to keep, it would probably be this one.
I know a high annual fee card doesn’t make sense for every family, but here are four reasons the Hilton Aspire Amex will easily take a place in my wallet:
1. Annual benefits that quickly offset costs
The Hilton Aspire card shines with its range of annual benefits that help it pay off quickly. These include up to $ 250 annual resort credit (applicable even to room charges) as well as a $ 250 airfare credit that can be used for incidental charges such as checked baggage fees. The annual airfare credit can be used as a similar credit for The American Express Platinum Card® or the American Express® Gold Card for things beyond baggage fees: consider day passes to lounges, currency exchange fees, or food and drink on board. If you can maximize these two credits on your own, you’re looking at a value of $ 500 for an annual fee of $ 450.
If annual credits aren’t enough, the Hilton Aspire also offers one free weekend night each year, arriving around your card anniversary, which can be used at any Hilton hotel with room reward availability. standard. The value of this night can obviously vary greatly depending on where you use it, but the the potential value is excellent.
To make the card profitable each year, consider combining the free night with a stay compensated by the resort credit. Whether it’s an unassuming resort in Phoenix, like the Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort that I enjoyed with my older kids last April, or a property like Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista Disney Springs, just outside of Disney World in Orlando, the combination of free night and resort credit has the makings of an inexpensive long weekend of family fun.
2. Access to the Executive Lounge via Top Tier Elite status
When choosing among hotels for family trips, the free breakfast is one of the first perks I consider (check out TPGthe list of best chain hotels for families, many of which offer free breakfast.) If I’m traveling alone, it’s no big deal. But the savings really add up when you look at breakfast at five o’clock.
Officially, Hilton Diamond status only offers breakfast for two people: the Elite member plus one guest. However, Hilton Diamond status guarantees access to the Executive Lounge at any property that has an Executive Lounge, and I have yet to ask a hotel to deny us or charge us for having more than one child with us. . This represents substantial savings for families throughout the year.
I have found that most hotels will even honor the breakfast restaurant benefit for additional children in the same room. For all stays except one, I was not charged for a second child when I eat in the restaurant instead of the lounge. We didn’t try this with our whole family, but when my daughter and I visited Buenos Aires in April, a family of five from Northern Ireland ate in the restaurant for free each morning at the Hilton Buenos Aires.
One of the reasons I chose the Hilton Aspire Card over Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant ™ American Express® Card is the fact that it offers a top status that guarantees breakfast for everyone. The Bonvoy Brilliant card only offers Marriott Gold status. If you’re curious which card would be best for your family, check out this direct comparison of the two.
3. Access to the Priority Pass lounge
If you have only a trio of your family, the Priority Pass Select membership offered through the Hilton Aspire card is sufficient to allow you access to any of the more than 1,200 program lounges worldwide. This feature made me consider keeping the Hilton Aspire as the only premium credit card in my wallet, in case I want to cut some fees this year. Membership is redundant to that offered by my Chase Sapphire reserve.
If your wallet has room for more than one premium card and you’re trying to find lounge access for a family of five or six, the Aspire could be a great addition to another premium card that also offers a access to the lounge.
4. Icing on the cake: a generous welcome offer
The initial welcome offer for a card is usually the first thing that turns my head. However, in the case of the Hilton Aspire, the current welcome offer of 150,000 bonus points after spending $ 4,000 on the card in the first three months is just that: a welcome bonus on a card product. already solid. Using TPGworth 0.6 per honor point, this bonus is worth around $ 900.
You can’t really get better than that among the hotel card offers!
When I saw the range of benefits and credits offered by the Hilton Aspire card, I immediately knew it was a winner. The Annual Resort Credit, Airline Fee Credit, and Free Weekend Night more than pay for the annual card fee, and the other perks are enough for me to consider this card a keeper card.
If you’re still not convinced that the Hilton Aspire Card is a perfect fit for the family wallet, here are several other articles that go into the details deeper:
Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are solely those of the author, and not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline, or hotel chain, and are not ‘have not been reviewed, approved or approved by any of these entities.
Featured image of the Waldorf Astoria Orlando courtesy of Hilton.