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How difficult is AmEx Hilton card approval?

Established Contributor

Re: How difficult is AmEx Hilton card approval?

scenery_guy wrote:
Im not so sure they monitor the spend on the card(s) compared to your income in great detail. Seems a bit odd to expect you to spend $70k on a card if you make $70k. We all like our various AMEX products but to spend every earned dollar on it is unreasonable. What I believe to be a larger red flag is that if you state $70k income yet spend $250k on the card. 


They don't just compare your spend to your income directly. There are formulas (much like FICO) that predict income based on spending patterns. There are commercially available ones, but Amex uses a proprietary one. While there is a huge amount of wasteful paranoia about Amex FR on this board, misstating your income (up or down) is one reliable way to beg for one.
To the OP: Sorry, just meant you didn't provide much about reasons for rejection beyond score. You can certainly obtain amex cards with your income, but you may have to show a year of handling your present limits, etc. My only point about amex being spend centric is that as you gather information, you should keep in mind the income and spending habits of the people posting their info. Typically, when someone posts a question like yours, a bunch of people post saying "I got it with a score of 440, 77 chargeoffs and being on America's Most Wanted". Especially with Amex, knowing that person has an income of $1 million helps explain their success. 
Personally, I think if you can wait at least 6 months since your last app and six months since your last new account, you have a pretty good shot with the hilton card. 



In wallet: Ink Plus 10k, AMEX TE 25k. In bag: CSP 16k, USAA WMC 15k, Hyatt 13k, United MPE 12k, AMEX HHonors 3k. In SD: Cap 1 QS 5k, Discover IT 7k. FICO 08 says my EQ is now 844, was 510 in 2010.
Message 11 of 16
New Contributor

Re: How difficult is AmEx Hilton card approval?

Sorry for my somewhat harsh reaction, and thanks for all the tips!


Edit: Typo

Recent FICO scores: TU - 755 (mortgage lender pull)
Message 12 of 16
Valued Member

Re: How difficult is AmEx Hilton card approval?

I was approved in October, Fico was in the low 700's:


At the time I had 3 cards. 


Two Citi reporting (high CL of 7.5k), one Discover not yet reporting (5.5k CL). 

AAoA was around 1.5 years.


Utility was around 38%.


income is lower than yours.


Inquiries:  1 from Discover in September.



I started with a CL of 2k.  I just recently applied for the 61 day CLI and it was increased to the current 3.4k (probably a mix of current utilization, income, and wanting to be near Chase).



Citi Forward $6K l Citi Double Cash $7K l Chase Sapphire Preferred $10.3K l Discover IT $12K l Chase Freedom $5K l Chase United 10k l Chase Slate 7.2k l Amex Hilton HHonors $12.1K l NFCU GoRewards Visa 16.6K l Barclay US Airways World Mastercard $8K
Message 13 of 16
New Contributor

Re: How difficult is AmEx Hilton card approval?

Omri wrote:

I apped for the AmEx SPG card in my most recent app spree and was denied, despite a 746 EX score, low utilization, and no baddies (though there were a couple recent inquiries). I learned shortly afterwards that it's one of the hardest AmEx cards to get (and I don't have an existing relationship with AmEx other than being an AU).


I'm thinking in my next mini-app spree (of a whole 2 cards in February) of getting the no fee AmEx Hilton HHonors card - in part due to a wedding in another city that I'll be a groomsman for that's being held at a Hilton, and in part due to the fact that there's no AF and the rate of return is good for gas, groceries, and drugstores. I don't want to app and get denied again though.


So, how hard is this card to get compared to other AmEx cards?


Credit profile:

  • 9 open CCs (2 closed) with current AAoA of 18 months. Much of AAoA is from an old AmEx card I was an AU on in 2005 - I opened quite a few new accounts in October/November this year (opened 4, reporting as AU on one added in Nov)
  • Total CL of all cards $42,800. Highest CL is $7,500
  • Util < 10% on all cards (I think it's probably around 1-2% overall)
  • Income ~$40k (getting married in January - do I include her income as well on CC apps? That would bump it up to $70k)
  • Inquiries on EX: 2 in 11/12, 1 in 10/12, 4 over a year old

Congrats on the upcoming wedding!


I just got approval on the AMEX HH card with no annual fee in late Nov. It was an instant approval. I also had prior to applying for that card the Amex PRG, Delta Skymiles Gold, and a closed Zync card. My relationship with AMEX is only 4 months old but I was approved for a CL of 5600. My AAoA is 5 years and overall Credit History is 14 years. I would say apply for a charge card as they are easier to get, have it for a month or so and pay on time and show them you are a good customer and you should be able to get any revolver with them say after two months with the charge card. Most likely your AAoA which is 18 months is slowing you down. No worries though, time will be your friend. Look at the Gold PRG card as it comes with 25K membership rewards points. That's a nice bonus and after you complete the spend to receive those points you should be ready for the Hilton Card. But as always YMMV. 


Good luck. Merry Christmas!

EQ Fico: 716 (from myfico)
TU Fico: 719 (from Walmart)
EX Fico: 719 (from myfico)

Chase Sapphire Pref. II AMEX Platinum II Amex PRG II Amex SPG II Citi AAdvantage II Barclays US Airways II Chase Freedom
Message 14 of 16
Established Contributor

Re: How difficult is AmEx Hilton card approval?

Approved 11/30 (snuck in before the 65k offer expired).  Approval would have been instant except EX is frozen.  I had to call in with the PIN.

EX Fico 693 on 11/10

AAoA - 2.1 years

Income - 115k

Inqs - 9 - 1 within 2 months, all 9 within 6 months, 4 were from shopping for auto loans in August.

Utilitzation - 1% split between two cards

Accounts open - 9 cards, 2 student loans, 1 auto loan


There's another approval in the creditpulls database on CreditBoards that shows an instant Hilton Amex approval at 665 and another that took 4 days at 678.  I think you're good to go in February,


Also, Amex recons are different than others like Chase.  They won't just reconsider because you ask nicely.  You do need to demonstrate that their decision was based on incorrect or incomplete information before they'll take a second look.

Message 15 of 16
Frequent Contributor

Re: How difficult is AmEx Hilton card approval?

My income is about 12,000 and my history total is about 8 months on Christmas. I have been approved for the AMEX PRG as well (I didnt think I was going to get approved because I thought the income requirement was higher, but I guess I got approved anyways.) Amex is very much a spend centric company like CD says (In another thread, I posted, one of my friends is a total trust fund baby, and he puts about 4-5k on his parents platinum card every month.) As always, keep your credit as good as good as it can be, and you should be able to qualify for any of their cards, but don't spend more then you have reported either. Like your like me with a small income right now, I would not put more then 3-400$ on there. That might change with my spending history with them over the years. As always, YMMV. 

Bank of America: Cash Rewards.- 4.2k. 4/25/12 (CLI Increase 6/15/13, CLI May of 2015, sept 2015), Citi: Forward- 4.5k. 10/27/12 (CLI on 2/8/14, SP, CLI on 9/26/15 sp). Discover: More- 7k, 10/27/12 (Increase 6/1/14, CLI in May of 2015, SP 9/2015) Amex: PRG- NPSL (closed 12/13/13). 11/24/12. Chase: Freedom. 5/1/13- 5k (EX CLI HP 9/2015) Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus.-3.6k. 6/15/13. Amex BCE-2k. 12/7/13. Amex SPG-5k 12/8/13 (CLI on 9/2015) Capital one VentureOne Visa Signature-10k (9/6/15). Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select World MasterCard-4K. Last App: 9/6/15. Total cl: 45,300
Message 16 of 16