How I Avoided Paying 159,000 Hilton Points for a Luxury Award Night!

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How I Avoided Paying 159,000 Hilton Points for a Luxury Award Night!

Million Mile SecretsHow I Avoided Paying 159,000 Hilton Points for a Luxury Award Night!Million Mile Secrets Team

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Jasmin:   Greetings from the Philippines!

Last week I shared how I booked an inexpensive award stay for my family at the beautiful St. Regis Abu Dhabi.  Next week, we’re spending a night in Tokyo on the way home.

I had my eye on the luxurious Conrad Tokyo, which normally costs 95,000 Hilton points per night.  But there were NO standard award rooms left!  The cheapest available room with points was a “Bay View King” that comes at a premium price of 159,000 Hilton points per night.  

While I’m all for a good splurge, that just wasn’t going to happen.

How I Avoided Paying 159000 Hilton Points For A Luxury Award Night
Thanks, but NO Thanks! An Award Night at the Conrad Tokyo for Our Travel Dates Costs 159,000 Hilton Points

The good news is, there are other ways to book a free stay at Hilton hotels.  And I’ll show you how I ended up getting a terrific deal!

Citi ThankYou Points to the Rescue!

Link:   Citi ThankYou Travel Portal

Link:   The Smart Way to Use Citi ThankYou Points at Hilton

Although Hilton is no longer a Citi ThankYou transfer partner, you can still redeem Citi ThankYou points for paid stays at Hilton hotels.  Including the Conrad Tokyo!

I wasn’t about to spend 159,000 Hilton points for a room at the Conrad Tokyo.  Nor was I interested in paying the cash rate of $513 plus tax per night (~$638 total!).

How I Avoided Paying 159000 Hilton Points For A Luxury Award Night
Sure, Children Are “Free” – but Both the Paid and Points Rate Was Just TOO Steep

So I checked the Citi ThankYou Travel Portal.  Because I have the Citi Premier Card, my Citi ThankYou points are worth 1.25 cents each toward paid airfare, hotels, car rentals, and more.

Surprise!  I was delighted to find a standard room, including a child discount, for less than 37,000 Citi ThankYou points per night.  In this case, the paid rate would have been ~$458.  That’s a substantial savings from the paid rate advertised by Hilton.

How I Avoided Paying 159000 Hilton Points For A Luxury Award Night
Score! A Room at the Luxury Conrad Tokyo for Less Than ~37,000 Citi ThankYou Points per Night

As always, it’s important to keep in mind that not all rewards currencies are created equal.

Although you can sometimes get a better value, Hilton points are normally worth ~0.5 cents each.  And in this case, my Citi ThankYou points were worth 1.25 cents each.  But regardless of those values, I think ~37,000 Citi ThankYou points for a night in a top-ranked luxury Conrad hotel is a terrific deal!

There are varying reports of whether or not folks have their Hilton elite status recognized when they book through the Citi ThankYou Travel Portal.  I have Hilton Gold status, which gets you free breakfast at Conrad hotels.  I’ll report back after our stay and share whether or not they gave us our perks!

Bottom Line

I was originally discouraged when I went to book an award night at the Conrad Tokyo for my family’s trip home from Asia.  There were no standard award rooms available.  And the only option was a premium room for 159,000 Hilton points per night – ouch!

Luckily, I was able to book a standard room for only ~37,000 Citi ThankYou points per night through the Citi ThankYou Travel Portal thank to having the Citi Premier Card.  We’re very much looking forward to the stay, and I’ll share a full review afterwards.

Have you found good deals using Citi ThankYou points for Hilton stays?  I’d love to hear about your experience!

Come back each Wednesday for a new installment in our Family Travel series!

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Citi Premier Card

Citi Premier Card

  • Earn 50,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 points per $1 spent on travel including gas stations
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent at restaurants and on entertainment
  • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • 50,000 Points are redeemable for $625 in airfare on any airline, anytime with no blackout dates when booked through the ThankYou® Travel Center, or $500 in gift cards when redeemed at
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • Points Transfer allows you to transfer points to participating airline loyalty programs
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases

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Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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During my honeymoon I stayed at the Andaz Tokyo and the Conrad Tokyo. I far preferred the Andaz Tokyo for its ambiance, service, and location. Conrad was great (got a nice rubber duckie as a take home) but liked the Andaz more. Conrad felt a little more corporate and cookie-cutter for me.

Speaking of breakfast at the Conrad, you will love it! Pretty extensive buffet plus you can pick a dish from the menu.

We’ll check out the Andaz next time! Although what with the amazing experience we had at the Conrad, it’ll be hard to resist going back.

The kids loved the Conrad rubber duckie. And you weren’t kidding about the breakfast – it was OUTSTANDING (yup, they honored my Gold status!)

We’d definitely return – here’s a quick blurb about it:

Thanks for the reminder to always check travel portals prior to using hotel points.

It’s definitely worth a look before booking an award room. And another option if your travel dates are firm and there are no available award rooms at the hotel you want.

Team member Keith was able to save a ton of Chase Ultimate Rewards points this way booking a Hyatt all-inclusive stay for his mom:

Just a note that you can always call the hotel or contact the GM to see if they can open up inventory for the standard award rate.

Thanks Mark! That’s a great tip – hadn’t thought of that. Have you had success with this in the past?

This is good if you were planning to transfer TY points if the rooms were available at the standard room level of 95k Hilton points/night. But if you were planning to use Hilton points that were already in your account without transferring TY points, then I would advise against this because I think TY points are too valuable.

Hi Shana – Hilton is no longer a Citi ThankYou transfer partner:

I do have Hilton points but would have burned through most of my stash in one night, which didn’t sit well with me. And I have a TON of Citi ThankYou points collecting dust in my account, so was happy with the redemption.

I can understand that. I’m saving up my TY points for an aspirational redemption! 🙂

I find this article a bit misleading. Yes, you avoided paying 159,000 Hilton points, but you ended using 37,000 Thank you points, which are a lot more valuable.

You’re right that you can often get more value by transferring flexible points to partners.

In this case, I had a lot of Citi ThankYou points and standard award nights weren’t available. So it worked for me!

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