2 Citi Hilton Reserve Card Updates

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I wrote earlier that Emily and I both applied for 2 Citi Hilton Reserve cards at the same time (1 for our business expenses and 1 for our personal expenses) and we received both cards!

Hilton Reserve Credit Card 3

2 Hilton Reserve Cards

However, this is NO LONGER possible since you can apply for only ONE Citi card per day and you don’t get approved for 2 of the SAME cards any longer.

The Citi Hilton Reserve gets you free Hilton Gold status (free internet and breakfast!) for as long as you have the card and 2 free weekend nights (weekend = Friday, Saturday & Sunday) at almost all Hilton hotels. The certificates are valid for 12 months from when they are issued and you have to complete your stay within 12 months from when the certificates are issued.

Keeping the card is well worth the $95 fee in my opinion if you will be staying at Hilton hotels and don’t get free breakfast or internet.

You cannot use the free night certificates at all-inclusive or Hilton Grand hotels in addition to Waldorf Astoria hotels which do not offer standard rooms and have all suites or villas.  But you can use them in Bora Bora and the Maldives!

Readers have been asking if we got both sets of free weekend night certificates (2 free weekend nights for each card), so here is our experience!

It was fairly easy to get the 2nd set of free weekend certificates for us, but read Rapid Travel Chai’s experience on how it can be much harder!

Daraius’ Experience

I applied for 2 Citi Hilton Reserve cards in my November 2012 app-0-rama.  I received the first set of free weekend night certificates promptly as I shared in this post.

But I didn’t get the second set of free weekend night certificates.

I knew that both my Hilton Reserve cards had my correct Hilton account number because I confirmed with Citi that the same number was linked to both cards.  And I could also see that the points from meeting the minimum spending on the credit card on BOTH cards had posted to the same Hilton account number.

The terms say that you have to wait 6 to 8 weeks to get the free certificates, but in practice I got the first set of free weekend night certificates once the statement in which I completed the minimum spending closed.

I logged into my Citi Hilton account and sent a secure message to Citi asking when I would receive the 2 free weekend night certificates because it was over 8 weeks since I completed the minimum spending requirements.

I had staggered the minimum spending requirements so I knew which Hilton Reserve card had not been credited with the 2 free nights and sent a secure message from that account.

I got a response in a day which said:

Our records show that your certificates were earned on 1/22/13. I am going to send an inquiry to Hilton HHonors so that they can confirm when they issued the certificates. If you have an email on file with Hilton, they would have sent it to that email address. Once I receive a response from Hilton, I will notify you with a letter sent to your home address.

Please allow me to apologize for any confusion and additionally, any delays in responding to you.

I still haven’t received a letter at home, but the 2 free weekend night certificates were emailed to me in about 15 days!  So I did get 4 free weekend night certificates in total.

Emily’s Experience

Emily’s experience was a little different.  For some reason, Citi opened a new Hilton account for one of her applications.  This could be because she may have not filled out her Hilton account number in the 2nd application by mistake.

We found out that Citi had opened a second Hilton account for one of her cards because the points from completing the minimum spending didn’t post to her Hilton account.

So we called Citi to ask which Hilton accounts were associated with her cards.  The rep gave us each Hilton account number and one of the accounts was a new Hilton account which Citi had set up.

So we called Hilton and they were able to confirm that Emily’s new account had 2 free weekend night certificates and Hilton points from completing the minimum spending in them.  We asked them to merge the new account with Emily’s old account.  The points from the new accounts AND the 2 free weekend night certificates both transferred to Emily’s existing account!

Bottom Line

You can NO longer get 2 Citi Hilton Reserve cards.

But if you previously applied for 2 Citi Hilton Reserve cards, you should be able to get the 2nd set of free weekend night certificates for your account.  The 1st step is to see if Citi set up a 2nd Hilton account for one of your cards.  If so, write down the new Hilton account number and call Hilton to merge the accounts.

If you applied for 2 Citi Hilton Reserve cards with the same account number, send a secure message to Citi to ask for your 2nd set of free weekend numbers.  Make sure to send the message from the Citi Hilton Reserve card account which has NOT received the free night certificates.

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51 responses to “2 Citi Hilton Reserve Card Updates

  1. I am not seeing Business card option for citi reserve card so how do you apply for business card ? Is there an option on personal card to specify as business ?

  2. I thought you could still get 2 Citi cards per day as long as they were different products? Such as one 50K AA card and one 40K AA card… can you please clarify?
    Thank you.

  3. Please do a post of the state of Citi churning, sounds like lots of developments.

  4. Is it possible to obtain 2 of the Citi Hilton Reserves by applying at different times? For instance one this month and another this fall? I would second the comments by Rapid Travel Chai that a post on the state of Citi churning would be helpful. Also can you review the terms of the free nights, such as when they expire and any other useful information. Thank you.

    • @karma – There isn’t a business card, but I applied for 2 personal cards (but was going to use one for business expenses). You can’t get 2 of these cards at the same time.

      @Lantean @Rapid Travel Chai @scott
      – I’ll have a post soon on what is and isn’t possible. You can get only ONE Citi card per day (even if they are different products). I don’t have personal experience, but I’d guess with the change in “rules” you can’t get 1 Reserve now and another later on. The free weekend nights have to be used (ie. you have to complete your stay) within 12 months from issue.

  5. So sad I missed the two Reserve Cards 🙁 but I did get the two personal American Airlines cards and a Business card easily (going to use the 150,000 miles to go to Bora Bora next year)! I was going to apply for two Citi Hilton cards (different products in my next appo-rama but I see you are saying I can’t get two in the same day even from different procuts. So my question is if I wanted to get two personal Hilton Citi Cards (different products) how long do i have to wait between applications ? 65+ days? And since I already have 3 citi cards (American Airlines) should I close one or two before applying?

  6. I just found out the hard way that you have to wait 18 months to apply for another Citi Business VISA, same as personal.

  7. so you can’t get 2 citi cards in 1 day anymore? I wanted to get an AA and Hilton card on the same churn.. I should have taken advantage of this while it lasted 🙁

  8. So is it possible to get the Citi Hilton HHonors Visa Signature personal card for the 50K bonus on one day and apply for the Citi Reserve Hilton Card the following day? Are the cards the same products?

  9. Daraius,

    Can you verify if the Chicago Waldorf Astoria is eligible. I am staying there in September and would rather not burn 160k hilton pts for 2 nights. This may be perfect. Perhaps there is a link where I can confirm myself? Thanks for your help as always.

  10. I too found out the hard way 6 weeks ago that you can’t get two cards in the same day, even if they are different types. What I’m wondering is, can you get one type the first day, and another type the next day, thereby still keeping your churn fairly compact ?

    I’m also unclear on if you are saying above that both Citi HHonors cards are now 18 +month apps, like the AA cards. As recently as March 14 my wife got another 50K HHonors card, even though she still had one open from a churn July 2012, and had recently canceled one from March 2012. So less than 4 weeks ago, HHonors cards were very churnable. Has this changed too?

  11. Hi Daraius,
    “you don’t get approved for 2 of the SAME cards any longer” – would that apply across the board for Citi products such as AA Advantage? I wanted to apply for a business and personal card so I am not sure if there was a change in policy? Can I get the points for business AA and then opening a personal Citi AA a couple months later?

    Many thanks!! Great blog

    • @Tiffany – You can’t get the regular Hilton and the Reserve on the same day, but you may be able to get the regular Hilton on one day and the Reserve after 2 or 3 days as long as you don’t have more than 2 Citi applications within the last 65 days. I’d close one or more American Airlines cards before applying for the Hilton card.

      @Frank – I’ve heard that the wait is now ~6 months for the business card, but this is the 1st report of 18 months for the business card.

      @andreas – Not on the same day, but you can get 2 personal cards within 65 days. So you could get the Hilton card on one day and a few days later get the AA card.

      @jay – I believe that is possible, though I’d wait 2 days to make sure. They aren’t the same product since they have different benefits and features (foreign transaction fees, earnings etc.)

      @Ed – You can use the free weekend night certificates at the Waldorf in Chicago as long as you can find standard room availability for 80K points a night.

      @Robert Hanson
      – You’re supposed to have 1 day gap between the cards (according to Citi), but no one knows when the clock starts ticking. So I prefer waiting at least 2 and ideally 3 or 4 days after the 1st approval to get the 2nd card. The Hilton cards are churnable, BUT not 2 at the same time like it used to be!

      @Ted – That is correct. Only ONE type of ANY Citi card per day. But you can get 2 cards within 65 days, so you can get the personal on day 1 and the business on day 3 or 4 or later.

  12. Would it work if you apply for 2 cards anyway to minimize credit enquiries and say the first card gets approved right away and you call to see if they can approve the second card, perhaps a day after?

  13. Robert Hanson

    Thanks for the clarification on applying with Citi.

    Now the question is, suppose I was going to do a very modest churn, say maybe 5 or 6 cards, 😀 including both Citi HHonors cards. I need 3 0r 4 days between those Citi apps. Do I apply for one Citi card, wait 4 days, then apply for all the other cards? Or do I apply for the others at once, then wait to apply for the last Citi card. I’m thinking the first option, otherwise when Citi checks for the last card, they might not like seeing 4 hard inquiries just a few days before. But I hate to jeopardize the whole group of cards trying to just get one more.


    does anyone have the phone number for 1800flowers.com?

  15. Where did you get the information that 2 Citi CCs on the same day is dead?

    • @MileHunter – I really don’t know, but please let us know if you do try it.

      @Robert Hanson – I personally would not risk an extra 50K Hilton points over the 4 other cards. So I’d apply for 4 cards at once and then do the 2nd Hilton card a few days later. That said, I’m not sure if you can still get 2 Hilton cards of the SAME type so close to each other, but it should be possible to get the Hilton Reserve and then a few days later to get the regular Citi card.

      @ABC – Reader email and posts on FlyerTalk.

  16. I am thinking if I should apply or not. Are they valid at the Versaille Trianon Palace or Rome Cavaleria? Those are AW hotels.
    I use the these weekend certificate, I am not eligible for free breakfast or internet even as a gold memer?

  17. “Keeping the card is well worth the $95 fee in my opinion if you will be staying at Hilton hotels and don’t get free breakfast or internet.”

    • @Anna – If you are Gold you will get free breakfast and internet regardless of if you use a certificate or not…though Waldorf hotels don’t provide free internet and breakfast. The certificate is valid at those hotels as long as there is standard award availability.

  18. Thanks, that’s how it seems to me too.
    And yes, I meant one Reserve card and one 50K card, not two of either.

  19. Pingback: 2 Citi Hilton Reserve Card Updates | Million Mile Secrets | All Inclusive Resort Reviews

  20. Which days are considered weekend days for the Hilton certs? Is it Friday/Saturday/Sunday or just Sat/Sun?

  21. I received a second personal Reserve card in the mail today. I thought my original application hadn’t gone through, so I applied again about 2 weeks later. I’m not sure if it’s okay to keep this card, or if it would get awkward with customer service if I needed to call them for anything? I wouldn’t mind paying the fee twice and doing the spending twice if it meant getting two sets of certificates. I have no idea if my HHonors account has been properly linked to the second card.

    • @mare – With Citi you usually get the bonus if they send you the card. That said, you could just spend a little on the card and see if it posts to your Hilton account or call to see if your Hilton account is linked to the card.

  22. Thank you! I will call them after I activate it.

  23. Now that Hilton has expanded their hotel categories from 1-7 to 1-10…can the 2 free nights still be used at category 8-10 Hiltons? The fine print states the two free nights can be used at category 1-7 hotels. Do you think they will cite the outdated fine print and not allow a booking of category 8-10 hotels?

    I was looking to get the card to book 2 nights at a former cat 7 (now 10) but now I’m not so sure….

  24. I know with the Reserve you get a free night for $10k in spend in a year. Is that calendar year or not? Example: My wife opened hers in November 2012 and we did most of our spending before Jan 1. Will that count towards the $10k or did that reset on Jan 1? Thanks!

  25. Can someone else use my certificates or can I use it to book room for someone else?

  26. I’ve a similar question. Other programs like Chase Hyatt or Chase Fairmont do not allow transferring gift certificate to others. Have you heard from anyone who successfully booked room with Hilton weekend cert for others without the person who got the cert present physically at the check-in. I wanted to gift my cert to my brother-in-law for two nights in Singapore.

  27. Just wanted to add a data point that I have had a lot of trouble getting the second set of free nights from Citi. I applied for 2 cards in Nov and completed the spend on both right away. Received the first 2 nights immediately after the statement closed in January. The 2 card statement closed a few days after but I didn’t receive anything. I’ve now had about 10 emails and calls over the last 6 months where they claim to investigate and then simply say that I did qualify in Jan and should have received them already. Or they say that I did received them, but they are confusing with the first card. I tried a call one more time today and she said maybe I didn’t qualify because they only allow the promotion for one card, but she confirmed with a manager that it was ok so she was going to put in a dispute investigation and make sure the notes were clear that I already got the certificates for the first card but not the 2nd. She promised to monitor the account and call me back this week to make sure everything worked out. PITA, but I do hope I get the nights for a stay I’m trying to book later this year at Cat9 property.

  28. My follow up is that i did get my second set of certificates successfully. It took one email to Citi (not helpful) and one phone call to HHonors. I had an excellent rep for that call. She obviously couldn’t give me the certificates on the spot, but they were emailed to me about 4 days later. I had to give her my credit card number, which I wasn’t entirely comfortable with, but I guess they needed to verify that i had two different Visa Reserve cards. So if you aren’t having success with Citi, try calling HHonors. I am currently only HHonors Gold, so I wasn’t even dealing with the Diamond desk.

  29. Hi Daraius, Looks like the breakfast is gone with the gold and where available like the hilton garden inn, restricted to just 1 and a guest. This is what it says on the hilton website.

  30. I know these are weekend night stays but does it HAVE to be weekend or can you also use during the week? Will be traveling to japan in October and staying Monday thru Thursday so looking for the best st card to get. Thanks!

  31. Pingback: New Hilton HHonors Reserve Card - Page 23 - FlyerTalk Forums

  32. Wonder if you can help.
    I applied and received the card but there was no mention of the HHonour # in the package.
    I secure messaged Citi and they replied with a HHonour #. However, it require a PIN# to register at HHonour site and Citi has no clue about it. So I am stuck. Any suggestions?
    BTW great blog. I used o frequent Fatwallet & FlyerTalk but no more.

    • @Pam – Thanks for reading! If you have an existing Hilton account, you can call Hilton (not Citi) and ask them to merge the new account with your old account. If you don’t have any account, call Hilton and give them the Hilton account number and ask them to reset the PIN for you.

  33. When does gold status get renewed if you already have the card? My annual fee is due in Dec and I don’t want to keep his card. But . If I don’t cancel until Jan would I gain the gold membership for 2014 ?… Does the gold benefit stick for the upcoming year even if cc gets cancelled?

  34. How long should I wait after canceling before trying to get this card again?

  35. Hey Daraius,

    I see a note for SW “Note: the bonus may be earned on one first-time personal and one first-time business Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Credit Card new account.” I will be applying for biz and personal at the same time. Should I not mention any RR account and let them assign me two new ones and then combine them later into one to count towards CP or use my existing RR on both apps? I don’t want to risk the CP by making a mistake here. Pl Help!

    • @HsInAz – As of now, folks are getting approved for business and personal cards, but I can’t comment specifically. You could apply separately, but not sure how the Companion-Pass qualifying points will transfer.

  36. Hi Darius. I want to stay at the Hilton Tel Aviv in August 2014 from Tuesday through Sunday. Can I hold the hotel reservation now through the Hilton website and the just present the two free nights certificate upon checkout to get the Friday and Saturday nights free? Do I have to still pay the taxes for those nights? Trying to figure out if it makes sense to book the Hilton or just stay at a less expensive hotel as Hilton is currently running $356/night + $65 tax for the least expensive room. Also, does the free breakfast for gold members include a companion?

    • @Jeff – If you’re a Hilton Gold, your companion will get free breakfast as well. You can’t just show up and get a room. You have to call Hilton, give them the certificate number and book a room. You won’t pay taxes if you redeem points or a free night certificate.

  37. Pingback: 50,000 Citi Hilton HHonors Visa - Page 147 - FlyerTalk Forums