[Expired] Aspire w/ first-year fee waived!


It’s dead, Jim. The waived fee offer is gone.

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A reader in our Frequent Miler Insiders group has shared with us an offer for the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire card that has the standard welcome bonus but waives the annual fee for the first year. That’s huge since the benefits on this card already outweigh the annual fee. Saving $450 in year 1 is icing on the cake. Note the caution section below for a couple of key things to consider.

The beach at the Conrad Bora Bora, where I used an Aspire free weekend night this year.

The Offer

Click the card information below to go to our dedicated Frequent Miler page for the card, where you can find more information and an application link for the most current offer.

Card Offer
180K Points + free night certificate ⓘ Friend-Referral
180K after $6K spend in first 6 months. Free night certificate every year - first certificate is awarded 8-12 weeks after approval. Terms apply.
$550 Annual Fee
Information about this card has been collected independently by Frequent Miler. The issuer did not provide the details, nor is it responsible for their accuracy.

Key Card Details

Card Name w Details & Review (no offer)
FM Mini Review: This card is loaded with valuable perks that are more than worth the card's annual fee if you stay in Hilton resorts at least twice per year.

$550 Annual Fee
Earning rate: ✦ 14X Hilton spend ✦ 7X US restaurants, flights booked directly with airlines or amextravel.com, select car rental companies ✦ 3X on all other eligible purchases ✦ Terms & Limitations Apply.
Base: 3X (1.44%)
Travel: 7X (3.36%)
Dine: 7X (3.36%)
Brand: 14X (6.72%)
Card Info: Amex Credit Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign transaction fees.
Big spend bonus: Additional free night awards after $30K and $60K spend in calendar year
Noteworthy perks: ✦Annual Free Night Reward every year upon renewal ✦ Free Diamond Status ✦ Up to $400 Hilton Resort Credit per membership year ($200 semi-annually) ✦ $200 Flight Credit ($50 per quarter for purchases directly with airlines or via Amex Travel) ✦ $100 on-property credit w/ Aspire Card package ✦ Terms Apply. See Rates & Fees

Quick Thoughts

Update: As noted at the top of the post, the offer with the fee waived in the first year is no longer available.

In last week’s Frequent Miler on the Air broadcast/podcast, Greg and I discussed the recent major devaluation to the CNB Crystal Visa Infinite that changed it from having benefits that far outweigh the annual fee to a card that isn’t worth keeping. In that discussion, Greg asked whether there are any other ultra-premium cards with benefits that far outweigh the annual fee. The clear answer was the American Express Hilton Aspire card. With its annual $250 airline incidental credit, $250 Hilton resort credit, free weekend night at almost any Hilton property in the world, and automatic Hilton Diamond status, one can easily get far more than $450 in value out of the card, making it well worth keeping in my opinion.

Picking up all of those benefits with no annual fee in year one looks like an amazing offer to me. Add the welcome offer on top of all that and I think this offer becomes such a good deal as to even be worth a 5/24 slot. As I said in our broadcast last week, I think this card is worth $450. I think it would still be worth it if Amex charged another hundred bucks. I’d be thrilled to test drive it for a year with no fee.

Grounds at the Conrad Bora Bora, bookable with your free weekend night certificate.


However, to temper your excitement a bit, I’ll note a couple of things: First, on the application landing page, the card shows an annual fee of $450 — the waived fee is not noted in the marketing lingo on the landing page. However, if you click the “rates & fees” link under “More information”, you’ll see that the rates and fees page clearly lists a fee of $0 for the first year, then $450.

If you decide to apply, I recommend taking a screen shot / printing those rates and fees to a PDF so you have them saved to show down the road that the offer clearly said $0 for the first year. I think it’s reasonable to expect that the first year fee will indeed be $0, though I’d rather have copies to make my argument later in case Amex tries to say that the fee is not waived.

Second, the reader who shared this with us found it on reddit, where many people are reporting getting the Amex no-bonus-for-you popup for the first time and quite a few folks have had applications go pending. However, there are also people reporting approval. YMMV.

Bottom line

This is a terrific offer. I wouldn’t expect it to last long. If you’ve had this card on your radar, I think this is hard to pass up. See our dedicated card page for this card by clicking the card information under “The Deal” to find more information about this card and a direct link to the application. Note that you will be prompted to log in to your Amex account to apply, but you can hit “continue without logging in” to apply without logging in if you prefer and/or don’t have an Amex account.

H/T: Reader Mauro

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