Ultimately, the Hilton Honors Amex Business card offers decent benefits and reward-earning power with its well-rounded bonus categories and loyalty perks. But when compared to the higher-priced Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card, which charges a $125 annual fee, the Hilton Honors Amex Business has less valuable rewards and doesn’t guarantee free nights each year.
Either way, those two cards will tie your rewards to specific hotel chains. The best option for the price may be to get a general-purpose travel card instead. If you’re less picky about where you stay, you’ll get much more say about where to apply your rewards across each leg of your journey.
Hilton Honors American Express Business Card vs. Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card
When picking the best hotel-branded business card for you, the largest factor to consider is what chain you prefer. Because both Hilton and Marriott have significant global hotel networks, the next aspect to focus on is value. The Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card has a higher annual fee of $125, but the card’s annual Free Night Award — worth up to 35,000 points — more than recoups that cost. Meanwhile, the Hilton Honors Amex Business requires you to spend $15,000 on purchases within a calendar year to receive a Free Night Reward, making it difficult to recoup the annual fee during the first year.
Speaking of rewards, our latest point valuation estimates Hilton points (0.6 cents each) are worth slightly less than Marriott points (0.7 cents each) on average. Both cards even reward similar bonus categories, but the Marriott Bonvoy Business card’s up to 18.5X points on Marriott purchases (6X Marriott Bonvoy Points plus its 12.5X Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status boost) can’t catch up to the Hilton business card’s up to 30X points on Hilton stays (thanks to its Gold Status base point boost).
However, whether either card is the right fit for you is easily determined by which brand (and loyalty program features) you prefer and which card’s benefits better fit your spending. If you don’t have a preferred hotel brand, weigh these differences or apply for a general travel card that rewards hotel stays.
Hilton Honors American Express Business Card vs. The Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express
For no annual fee, The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express provides flat-rate 2X Membership Rewards points on your first $50,000 in purchases, then 1X points. These Amex points are more valuable and flexible, but you can also convert those rewards to Hilton Honors points if you’d like. While its flat-rate rewards program doesn’t seem as lucrative as the Hilton Amex Business card’s on paper, it’s a great choice for business owners with startup expenses or without a specialized budget. However, the Blue Business Plus may not be the best fit for businesses that spend over the annual spending cap on rewards.
When deciding between these two cards, it’s important to evaluate your spending habits and goals. If your company is relatively new and you want to earn rewards on startup expenses, the Blue Business Plus is a great option that allows the cardmember to redeem rewards in various categories or transfer them to one of Amex’s many hotel and airline partners. If business travel is a significant expense for your company and you value elite status benefits, the Hilton Honors American Express Business Card is a more prudent choice.
Best cards to pair with this card
The Hilton Honors Amex Business card pairs particularly well with other American Express credit cards since Membership Rewards can be exchanged for Hilton Honors points. The Blue Business Plus card can provide better rewards on any business expense, for example. (Keep in mind that you might want to hold onto your Amex rewards instead of transferring them to Hilton since they’re more versatile.)
Similarly, you might want to look into a card that can earn you rewards on other travel expenses at a higher rate, like a general travel card. For the same $95 annual fee, the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card earns 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on the first $150,000 you spend each account anniversary year on travel, shipping purchases, internet/cable/phone services and select advertising purchases.
If you’re a Hilton loyalist and want to maximize your stays with free nights and additional rewards, the consumer Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card could support the Hilton Honors Amex Business card. It offers a multitude of hotel and travel credits, complimentary Diamond Status, and7X Hilton points on flights booked directly with airlines or via American Express Travel. However, its $450 annual fee and better 14X-point starting rewards rate on Hilton purchases may steps on the Hilton Business card’s toes unless you can justify this sizable additional fee.