May052016

Do Hilton HHonors Member Discounts beat AAA rates?

The quick answer is yes. HHonors Discount rates are often lower than AAA rates. However, the HHonors Discount lower rate that beats AAA is commonly a member discount on the Advance Purchase prepaid and nonrefundable rate. While technically the HHonors Discount Advance Purchase rate is lower than AAA rate, the conditions are more restrictive. I have not found a lower HHonors Discount rate that beats AAA when both rates have the same flexible cancellation policies.

This is the second in a series of articles where I look at new rates for loyalty program members introduced in all the major hotel chains in 2016. Hilton and Starwood launched member only discounts October 2015, Hyatt followed in January, Marriott in March and most recently IHG.

Loyalty Traveler – Does Hyatt’s MyRate member discount beat AAA rates? Yes, sometimes (May 4, 2016).

Hilton Parc 55, San Francisco

May 7-8, 2016

  • Flexible Rate (BAR) = $189
  • HHonors Discount = $185 (2.1% discount)
  • HHonors Discount Advance Purchase = $157 (16.9% discount)

Hilton Parc 55 member rates

The hotel industry points to San Francisco hotels as the best money-maker in the USA these past two years. San Francisco, with the highest average hotel rates in the USA, has priced me out of the tourist market and I have not stayed in a San Francisco hotel since 2014. I was blown away to see rates this low in the city for next weekend.

  • $180 AAA rate
  • 60,000 HHonors points Standard Reward
  • 24,000 + $100 Points and Money Reward

Hilton Parc 55 all rates

AAA rate at Parc 55 is a lower than normal 4.8% discount on BAR. Standard AAA rate is 10% discount on BAR. This Parc 55 AAA rate is $23 per night more than HHonors Member Advance Purchase rate.

Interestingly, the Advance Purchase rate is only offered as an HHonors member rate. I don’t see the AP rate option for non-HHonors members. That is certainly one way to motivate potential guests to join HHonors.

HHonors shows it does offer its best discount rates to HHonors members. These rates may even exceed the discount for AAA rates, if the buyer is willing to accept more restrictive conditions. As with other hotel chains, the HHonors member discount is an even better deal than AAA rates when traveling to international destinations where there are no AAA rates offered at Hilton-brand hotels.

Hilton Garden Inn Bakersfield, California

HGI Bakersfield rates

  • Flexible Rate = $99
  • HHonors Discount flexible cancellation = $97 (2% discount on Best Flexible)
  • AAA rate = $84 (15.1% discount on Best Flexible)
  • HHonors Discount Advance Purchase = $77 (22.2% discount on Best Flexible)

This is a more typical rate for my hotel stays with a $100 per night hotel and a more typical rate pattern than what is seen for Parc 55 San Francisco. In this example there is a nice AAA rate discount of 15% on best flexible rate from $99 to $84 for the room night.

As seen with Parc 55, there is a deeply discounted HHonors member advance purchase rate, yet no advance purchase rate offered to non-members. This is a significant find to me. Hilton HHonors seems to be providing major incentives for potential guests to join HHonors on the spot at time of booking if they want the lowest room rate. I find that a formidable tactic to combat online travel agency bookings, while simultaneously giving a boost to Hilton HHonors membership.

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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