Amex hotel cards: How to choose the right one | finder.com
A couple in a hotel room holding tablet and credit card

Amex hotel cards: How to choose the right one

We value our editorial independence, basing our comparison results, content and reviews on objective analysis without bias. But we may receive compensation when you click links on our site. Learn more about how we make money from our partners.

Frequent and casual travelers alike could find a new favorite travel companion.

American Express hotel cards offer two loyalty programs for cardholders to choose from.

One is Hilton Honors, which has a suite of three cards. The other is the combined Starwood Preferred Guest/Marriott Rewards program, which gives you a choice of two cards.

Our pick for Amex hotel rewards: Hilton Honors American Express Card

  • Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Honors American Express Card after you use your new card to make $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of card membership.
  • Earn 7x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged directly with a hotel or resort within the Hilton Honors portfolio of brands.
  • Earn 5x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations.
  • Earn 3x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases on your card.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees. Enjoy international travel without additional fees on purchases made abroad.
  • Enjoy complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status with your card. Plus, spend $20,000 on eligible purchases on your card in a calendar year and you can earn an upgrade to Hilton Honors Gold status through the end of the next calendar year.
  • No Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Read less
Read more
Promoted

Compare American Express hotel cards

Name Product Filter values Annual Fee APR for Purchases (Purchase Rate) Intro APR for Balance Transfer
$0
17.74% to 26.74% variable
Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $1,000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & Fees
$95
17.74% to 26.74% variable
Earn 125,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & Fees
$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
17.74% to 26.74% variable
Enjoy a $0 annual fee on the first year and earn up to 2 Starpoints® for every dollar of eligible purchases. Rates & Fees
$450
17.74% to 26.74% variable
Enjoy up to $300 in statement credits each year of Card Membership for eligible purchases at participating SPG or Marriott Rewards hotels.
$450
17.74% to 26.74% variable
150,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $4,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership.
$95
17.74% to 26.74% variable
Earn 125,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of card membership.
$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
17.74% to 26.74% variable
Earn 75,000 bonus points after you use your new card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of card membership.

Compare up to 4 providers

Best American Express hotel credit cards

Amex hotel cards come with various annual fees and perks. Compare them closely to find one that fits exactly what you’re looking for.

Jump to …

Best for no annual fee: Hilton Honors American Express Card

Hilton Honors American Express Card

  • Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Honors American Express Card after you use your new card to make $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of card membership.
  • Earn 7x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged directly with a hotel or resort within the Hilton Honors portfolio of brands.
  • Earn 5x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations.
  • Earn 3x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases on your card.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees. Enjoy international travel without additional fees on purchases made abroad.
  • Enjoy complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status with your card. Plus, spend $20,000 on eligible purchases on your card in a calendar year and you can earn an upgrade to Hilton Honors Gold status through the end of the next calendar year.
  • No Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Read less
Read more
Promoted
The no-annual-fee Hilton Honors American Express Card doesn’t have many perks, but you can earn good rewards for everyday purchases. The card may be a great choice if you want to save your points for an occasional stay at a Hilton property.

Best for Hilton: Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card

Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card

  • Earn 125,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card after you use your new card to make $2,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of card membership.
  • Earn a Weekend Night Reward from Hilton Honors after you spend $15,000 on purchases on your card in a calendar year.
  • Earn 12x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged on your card directly with a hotel or resort within the Hilton Portfolio.
  • Earn 6x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases on your card at US restaurants, US supermarkets, and US gas stations.
  • Earn 3x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases on your card.
  • Spend $40,000 on eligible purchases on your card in a calendar year and you can earn Hilton Honors Diamond status through the end of the next calendar year.
  • $95 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Read less
Read more
Promoted
There are three cards in Amex’s Hilton collection, and the mid-tier option brings the most bang for your buck. It costs $95 a year, but you’ll earn strong rewards on Hilton stays and eligible dining, groceries and gas.

Gold status in the Hilton Honors program sweetens the deal. It includes valuable perks like complimentary breakfast and room upgrades, and you won’t have to pay an arm and a leg to earn it.

Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card vs Hilton Honors American Express Card

Best mid-tier option for Starwood Preferred Guest and Marriott Rewards: Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

  • Earn 75,000 Bonus Points after you use your new card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 6 points for each dollar of eligible purchases at participating SPG® and Marriott Rewards® hotels and 2 points on all other eligible purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees on international purchases.
  • Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your card account anniversary. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 points) at a participating hotel. Select hotels have resort fees.
  • Enjoy complimentary, unlimited Boingo Wi-Fi on up to four devices at more than 1,000,000 Boingo hotspots worldwide. Enrollment required.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Read less
Read more
Promoted
If you’re a regular at SPG or Marriott Rewards properties and don’t want to pay a steep annual fee, this is the card for you. Key features are the highly accelerated points on eligible stays and a Free Night Award every card year.

Best for premium travel: Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card

Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card

Enjoy up to $300 in statement credits each year of Card Membership for eligible purchases at participating SPG or Marriott Rewards hotels.

Promoted
The Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card is simply a stellar product. Though it has a steep annual fee, it’s loaded with top-notch features.

The annual statement credit offsets a large portion of its yearly fee, and the card’s other flagship perks are worth a lot. One of its best features is the 3x-point tier, which will help you earn points faster on eligible flights and dining.

How to compare American Express hotel credit cards

American Express offers more than one card for its partner hotel chains, and it might be difficult to make the right pick. Here are a few factors to consider while comparing products.

  • Annual fee. Amex sticks to standard annual fees: $0, $95 and $450. Figuring out what you’re willing to pay can be a great starting point.
  • Rewards. Think about your annual spending and see if it fits with a card’s bonus categories.
  • Welcome offer. A healthy haul of bonus points can tip the scales if you’re facing a close decision. The welcome offers from all of Amex’s hotel cards are enough to earn you a free night at eligible properties
  • Hotel loyalty program status. All of Amex’s hotel cards come with complimentary status upgrades in their respective loyalty programs. Check out the differences between Silver and Gold status in the Hilton Honors and SPG/Marriott Rewards programs and see which perks you want.
  • Airport lounge access. Consider whether you want airport lounge access. You might not mind forgoing it if you rarely travel. When choosing between the mid-tier and premium cards, consider whether you’re OK with limited lounge access.

Bottom line

Amex’s hotel cards are similar in many ways. However, closely looking at key differences between them can help you make your final decision. Go through the list of comparison factors we’ve discussed, and you’ll be well on your way to picking the winner.

If you’re not convinced an American Express hotel card is right for you, consider a travel card.

Frequently asked questions

Kevin Joey Chen

Kevin Chen is a world-travelin', copy-writin', Game of Thrones-watchin' credit cards writer for finder.com. When he's not crunching the numbers on bonus points and comparing APRs, you can find him flying around the world in search of the perfect beer.

Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

US Credit Card Offers

Important Information*
Deserve® Classic Card
Deserve® Classic Card

APR

24.49
variable

Annual fee

0 For the first year
More info
Luxury Card Mastercard® Gold Card™
Luxury Card Mastercard® Gold Card™

APR

16.74
variable

Annual fee

995 For the first year
More info
First Access Visa Card®
First Access Visa Card®

APR

29.99
variable

Annual fee

75 For the first year
More info
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® Credit Card
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® Credit Card

APR

23.9
variable

Annual fee

75 For the first year
More info

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and Terms of Use.

Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.

US Credit Card Offers

Important Information*
Deserve® Classic Card
Deserve® Classic Card

APR

24.49
variable

Annual fee

0 For the first year
More info
Luxury Card Mastercard® Gold Card™
Luxury Card Mastercard® Gold Card™

APR

16.74
variable

Annual fee

995 For the first year
More info
First Access Visa Card®
First Access Visa Card®

APR

29.99
variable

Annual fee

75 For the first year
More info
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® Credit Card
Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® Credit Card

APR

23.9
variable

Annual fee

75 For the first year
More info
Go to site