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The cost of Hilton Reward Nights (i.e. those paid for with your Hilton Honors points) tends to vary enormously, both between different hotels and even at certain hotels, where prices at one particular property can change (often dramatically) depending on demand.
As a result, when you’re looking to spend your Hilton Honors points on a free night, it can be a little daunting. There’s a huge portfolio of hotels out there, and working out which hotel fits within your points budget can be time-consuming to say the least.
Step forward the Hilton Points Explorer tool…
Simply plug in your points budget and destination to the Hilton Points Explorer, and you will be presented with the list of hotels in your location within your points budget.
You will also receive the highest and lowest points charge for that hotel, based on a recent date reference point. That then allows you to work out what hotels are likely to be in your budget, and check them accordingly.
The following example is for London:
As you can see, you may be “lucky” and get the Lincoln Plaza London for 38k points, or you may be hit with an 80k points price tag. Usefully, if you only had 40k points and therefore that was the limit of your “Number of Points” search, the Lincoln Plaza London would still come up in the search results:
So your maximum number of points in the search results will bring up any search results whose minimum number of points falls below (or is equal to) your search threshold.
You just then need to look at your dates and determine whether you can afford it on the date in question. Clearly, there is scope for disappointment here, but at least you will see all the hotel options that you might be able to use your points at.
So, a potentially useful tool. The obvious flaw is how often Hilton will update it (given the regular changes in Honors points pricing at hotels themselves), but certainly an option worth remembering.
Perhaps the most useful element…
One of the very best value angles to Hilton Honors is the 5k and 10k point redemption options. This new search tool allows you to very easily search for ALL hotels globally that fall into the 5k or 10k redemption point category. You can then plan your global travel at absolutely fantastic prices.
To effect the 5k hotel search for example, simply take the following steps:
First, drag the points search slider down to 5k points (obviously), but keep the destination search bar as “Anywhere”:
You will be presented with a rather unhelpful screen, with multiple references to you needing to “check availability”:
The key here is to look in the top right corner. Flip the search criteria from “Max Points (Hi-Lo)” to “Max Points (Lo-Hi)”:
You will then be presented with a feat of juicy 5k per night hotels, worldwide:
So, while not the most useful tool ever given the uncertainty over whether the potential “lowest price” will work for you. However, a helpful starting point for reward night searches (as a guideline if nothing else), and an extremely useful option if you’re searching for bargain reward nights at the lower cost end.