When Will You Lose Hilton Status If You Cancel a Citi Hilton Card?

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Million Mile secrets reader, Tobin, commented:

If I cancel my Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card (because the annual fee is due and Citi won’t waive it), will I lose my Hilton Gold elite status right away, at the end of the year, or…?

Great question!  I spoke with representatives from both Citi and Hilton.  Both of them said you’ll keep Hilton Gold elite status for as long as you have the card.  And that you will lose status when you cancel the card.

When Will You Lose Hilton Status If You Cancel A Citi Hilton Credit Card

Citi Says You’ll Receive Hilton Gold Status When You Have a Citi Hilton Reserve Card. But How Long Do You Have It After You Cancel?

I’ll share more details, and give you tips in case you decide to keep it!

Hilton Gold Status Can Be Valuable

Link:   Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card

Link:   Citi Hilton HHonors Visa Signature Card

Link:   My Review of the Citi Hilton HHonors Card

Link:   My Review of the Citi Hilton HHonors Visa Signature Card

With the Hilton HHonors Reserve Card, you’ll earn 2 weekend night certificates good at select Hilton hotels after spending $2,500 on purchases within 4 months of account opening.

And you’ll get free Hilton Gold elite status.

When Will You Lose Hilton Status If You Cancel A Citi Hilton Credit Card

Get Free Breakfast With Hilton Gold Elite Status

Hilton Gold status comes with great perks that other hotel chains only give their top elite status holders.

  • Room upgrades when available
  • Free continental breakfast
  • 25% bonus points on stays
  • Fifth night free on award stays of 5 nights or more

The $95 annual fee on the Hilton HHonors Reserve Card is NOT waived the 1st year.  But if you use the perks of Hilton Gold Status, they can easily cover the cost of the annual fee.

How Quickly Will You Lose Hilton Gold Status After You Cancel?

Tobin asked Citi to waive the annual fee but they did NOT.  So Tobin wants to know how long he’ll keep Hilton Gold elite status after he cancels his card.

Citi says:

Enjoy HHonors Gold status as long as you’re a Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve cardmember.

So I called Citi to ask what this meant.

The Citi representative said when a Hilton credit card is canceled, it takes a business day or 2 to be completely removed from your banking profile.

When Will You Lose Hilton Status If You Cancel A Citi Hilton Credit Card

Citi Says You’ll Lose Hilton Gold Elite Status Within 1 or 2 Business Days

As soon as the card is removed, Citi, who authorizes the elite status, will send a request to Hilton HHonors to deactivate your elite status.

When Hilton HHonors receives the request to deactivate your status, it is processed instantly.

So when you cancel, you may get a day or 2 of elite status benefits, but don’t expect them!

Consider Downgrading Instead

Instead of canceling a credit card, some banks will let you switch to a different card with NO annual fee.

In this case, Tobin could ask to be downgraded to the Citi Hilton HHonors Visa Signaturewhich does NOT have an annual fee and comes with Hilton Silver status (15% points bonus on Hilton points earned, 2 free bottles of water, late check-out).

Downgrading, instead of canceling, will help the average age of your credit accounts which may increase your credit score.

However, Tobin will likely NOT be offered the sign-up bonus!  Currently, the Citi Hilton HHonors Visa Signature has an increased sign-up bonus of 75,000 Hilton points after completing minimum spending.

So it makes the most sense to do this if you’re not eligible for the bonus because you’ve had the card in the last 18 months.

Bottom Line

If Tobin decides to cancel his Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card, Citi says he’ll lose his Hilton Gold elite status within 1 or 2 business days.

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13 responses to “When Will You Lose Hilton Status If You Cancel a Citi Hilton Card?

  1. Thanks for this clarification.
    One more question…
    if you close the card and you have not yet used the 2 free nights —
    do you still get to use them ?

  2. Interesting. I canceled my Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card on 5/26/15 and I still have my gold status. Given that I don’t say in Hilton hotels nearly enough to have actually earned gold status through stays, I’m not sure the agent is correct, or maybe I was just lucky!

  3. Interesting…we cancelled our Hilton HHonors cards earlier this year, but we had already made 2 reservations on points for a Hilton in Denver in June. We were given gold benefits at our Hilton stay in Denver in June.

  4. Dear Darius,

    I enjoyed this blogpost and have a related question. As a holder of the Hilton Honors Amex Surpass card, does it ever make sense to go for the Citi Hilton Honors Visa Signature Card? I would be interested in it for the sign-up bonus but the silver status is below that of my current card and the earning potential is less than my current card. LIkely I would not keep this card for long, but soon go for the Reserve card. At the same time, I currently don’t have a single citi product in my portfolio. Just wondering whether you had any thoughts on this scenario? Thank you in advance. Raphael.

  5. Interesting, I cancelled mine on 6/17 and still have Gold status as of today! Same as Jess, I wouldn’t have Gold status w/o this card. I’m wondering if maybe it will remain good until the end of the year. Maybe Citi reports it, but Hilton doesn’t remove it until the end of the year?

  6. I canceled my card July last year and as of today, I still have gold status. I suspect I will lose it this month.

  7. Of course CITI’s response is that you’ll lose Gold status immediately they want you to pay the annual fee! The reality is that your upgraded status will probably linger for awhile. And then HILTON will eventually downgrade lots of accounts all at once. So, YMMV. You could lose status soon. Or, it may be a root d for awhile.

  8. Sorry for the misspellings, typical autocorrect.

  9. @Misty. I am pretty certain that you would lose your two free nights if you cancelled the card.

  10. I had the Amex Hilton Honors Surpass and cancelled it months ago because I did not want to pay the fee. I still have gold status when I sign in to my Hilton account and get gold benefits when I stay at Hilton hotels.

  11. Thanks for your response.

    I should have mentioned that I do have other Citi Hilton Cards.
    So if I cancel the one with the 2 weekend nights … would I still retain the certificates?

  12. As another data point, I cancelled my reserve card in April and still have gold status and received gold benefits at a recent stay. Also agree with @Nancy – kinda shocked MMS even asked the question. Obviously they’re going to tell you that.
    @Misty – I can confirm that I was able to use a free night earned from annual spend after I cancelled the card. I can’t see why the initial 2 nights would be any different. The certificates are generated by Hilton (not Citi) when Citi notifies them. Each free night certificate is emailed with unique ID numbers and expiration dates.

  13. Citi reserved card has great perks , but you have to monitor them to fulfill all the fine print details. The last year I earned diamond status, but I am very dissatisfied with Citi because they did not want to compensate 108 $ difference via price rewind program. I also noted that you get additional points 2 per each dollar spend only for selective airlines , and it becomes my responsibility to watch it. I spoke with their costumer service about it , and I asked to waive an annual fee which should be waived after all these troubles. I could not go far with them. I earned diamond status ; hoping it will not be removed after I cancel the card. My suggestion is simple : get this card fulfill fine print and earn 2 free nights , pay 95$ annual fee and dump this card upon next renewal. Hilton AMEx is much better deal you can earn gold status after spending 20 k each calendar year without annual fee or take their surpass card which gives you gold status but comes with annual fee. One more thing , it took the city card about 3 months to refund my money for the dispute.