Hilton Makes More Award Rooms Available for Diamond Elite Members

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I made a glancing comment on my Booking Hawaii: Part 3 post:

There were technically no award nights available, but I love the soft perk of Hilton giving Diamond guests enhanced award availability.

(Yasss, quoted myself!)

Which prompted some discussion in the comments. Drew asked for more detail. And Brandon reported getting more award space at a lower rate.

Aye verily, I was able to book an award stay when no award rooms were “technically” available:

hilton diamond

Boom

Hilton also has the room rate as “confidential.” Fancy!

This is, as far as I know, an unpublished benefit of the Hilton HHonors program.

They go on to say:

asd

How Hilton describes this perk

If you’re Diamond with Hilton, this could come in handy more often than you think.

Is this actually useful?

It can be!

I’ve seen many “no rooms” messages for an award stay, only to have rooms miraculously appear after I log in.

Case in point, I searched for 4 nights at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Philadelphia Center City in late September – not logged in.

Uh uhhh

Nuh uhhh

All Hilton has to say about the matter is “sorry ’bout it.”

Unavailable

Unavailable

In fact, this whole period of a couple of weeks seems sold out.

So then I logged in.

Magically available

Magically available

I could suddenly book a 4-night stay for 50,000 Hilton points per night. And Hilton even reminded me that rooms were “filling up quickly! Don’t wait!”

Rooms around this time cost roughly $330 per night after taxes, which makes each Hilton point worth over half a cent each (.066 cents each) – which is about what you can expect with Hilton points.

If you matched to Hilton Diamond

Lots of peeps, including yours truly, matched to Hilton Diamond elite status in late 2015.

Works in Philly, worked in Hawaii too

Works in Philly, worked in Hawaii too

Since then, I’ve only redeemed my Hilton points once – and that was for the Hawaii trip. This exact Diamond award availability came into play for the dates I wanted.

Without status, Hilton wouldn’t have given me anything.

So in my case, this benefit was truly meaningful.

And, like in the example above, you never know when they’ll throw you a bone. I don’t know of any other hotel chains that make extra award nights available to their elite members – so this is another +1 for #TeamHilton.

It’s not worth switching to Hilton just to take advantage of this or anything.

But if you matched, be sure to log in when you’re searching around the site – you might get more award rooms and/or a better price on your award stay.

Bottom line

I don’t believe this is an anomaly. Based on searching around the Hilton site for the better part of a year, I’ve noticed the “DIA” (Diamond) award room rate available for many of them. So I can pretty confidently say this is an unpublished “soft perk” of Hilton Diamond elite status.

Remember, you also get the 5th night free on award stays if you have any type of status with Hilton. So if you’re able to combine expanded award availability with a 20% discount – hey, even better!

Again, it’s not worth switching to Hilton for this alone.

But, combined with some pretty nice upgrades, a crap ton of points for every stay, and free breakfast every day, not to mention they’re everywhere!, I’ve been satisfied with Hilton this year.

Us Hilton folks are few and far between, but I’m curious – has anyone else noticed more award nights if you have Diamond status? This is a pretty sweet bonus if your dates happen to line up with extra rooms and discount.

Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

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About Harlan

Just a dude living in Dallas.

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  1. Great post Harlan! One more thing I wanted to add on, are you aware of the “AXON” awards? They’re kind of like a hidden subset of Hilton’s program where you can book stays in multiples of 4 and they charge you a set rate depending on the category. So for the above example, the DoubleTree in Phily a normal 4-night stay is 200,000 Hilton points but with the AXON award booking it’d only cost 160,000 Hilton points thus saving you 40,000 points! Although I’m not sure how to take into consideration when normal award availability isn’t available and only the Diamond Standard Award is available for Diamond members so I’m hoping the AXON awards would still apply if you’re a diamond member? I’ll find out and get back to you

    • Yes!

      You can sometimes get a better deal with them – not always, so it’s important to compare rates.

      You MUST have an Amex Hilton card (I don’t), and the rates are only available for Category 5-10 properties in 4-night blocks:

      Category 5: 130,000 points
      Category 6: 160,000 points
      Category 7: 190,000 points
      Category 8: 220,000 points
      Category 9: 260,000 points
      Category 10: 300,000 points

      I don’t know how it would combine with the Diamond perk either – but I’d love to hear what you find out if you don’t mind posting an update!

      Thank you, Brandon!

  2. Whoops, just realized the AXON award system is only available for Hilton Amex cardholders! I just called the Hilton diamond desk, looks like you can’t do an AXON booking AND a Diamond Standard Award booking, has to be one or the other! Boo!

    • Funny side note, I asked the agent if she sees availability on the exact dates you mentioned (Sept 25 – Sept 29th) at that exact hotel with “diamond standard award night” and she said she couldn’t see anything. So either she doesn’t know the system that well or it’s really not available, but we saw availability when we logged in sooo she must not know the system that well 😛

  3. Not only is it not an anomaly, it’s a pretty amazing benefit. I was able to book a room at an all-suite property for New Year’s Eve at a property that shows as sold out when not logged into a diamond account. When logged in as a Diamond member, I saw 1 Room Diamond guarantee availability at either $446+tax or 30,000 points. I couldn’t believe it. Hilton gets a bad rap, but they’ve been killing it in terms of service and benefits like this (and even premium room awards for less than the cost of standard ones sometimes!).

    • Nico, I agree. I honestly don’t get the Hilton hate – they’re been great to me and I’ve been impressed at how they shower me with more than enough points for meaningful redemptions.

      I’m done wasting my time with SPG and Hyatt – they’re expensive, and not everywhere I want them to be. Plus, that whole Marriott thing for SPG…

      From time to time, you can get a stellar deal with Hilton points – glad you’ve had similar experiences with their loyalty program. We can make our own team lol.

      And thank you so much for reading and commenting!

  4. I use Hilton for all inclusive vacations…no 5th night or axon, but still a value…Dia does create availability and upgrades at these properties…at 50k for PVR and 60k for MBJ all inclusive for 2 people it is an excellent value. I have the Hilton surpass card, which offers 6X points at grocery stores. This enables me to buy gift cards that rack up 60K points at a cost of $125 in associated fees.

  5. @Wise2u Your gift cards are $6.25 each? I’ve never seen that amount, they usually end in X.95. I am assuming $500 gift cards.

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