Via reddit / various blogs, there are new increased signup bonus offers for both Hilton cards from American Express.
For the no fee card, the new offer is 75,000 points after $1000 in spending, compared to the normal 40,000 points after $750 in spending. The card offers 7x points on Hilton purchases, 5x at restaurants, supermarkets, and gas stations, and 3x everywhere else. It also offers Silver status in Hilton HHonors and Gold status if you spend more than $20,000 in a calendar year. I wouldn’t actually do this, or use the card for restaurants, supermarkets, or gas stations, by the way.
For the Surpass card (annual fee of $75 not waived) the new offer is 100,000 points after spending $3000 in 3 months. It offers 12x points for Hilton purchases, 6x for restaurants, supermarkets, and gas stations, and 3x for all other purchases. If you spend $40,000 in a year, you can get Diamond status with Hilton HHonors.
Both cards have foreign transaction fees. Both offers are showing as valid until May 4th, 2016. No direct link to either offer, but all referral links now show the increased bonuses.
I find the best value for Hilton points to be for lower category hotels. as category 1, 2, 3 hotels are only 5k, 10k, 20k points per night, respectively, while a top category hotel, like the Conrad Tokyo I just stayed at, would be 95,000 points in the high season. If you are aiming towards top tier Hiltons, something like the Citi Reserve would be better, which offers 2 weekend certificates usable at any Hilton as a signup bonus.
I believe the upgrade trick to get 50,000 bonus points when upgrading from the no fee card to the Surpass may still work, according to chatter on the internet. In that case, you could get both, cancel the Surpass, then upgrade the no fee card for bonus points.
Is anyone thinking of getting either of these cards?