Recursive Status Matching
How To Stretch Your Hotel Status Without Staying at Hotels
As I sit in the Houston centurion lounge sipping my exceptional (and free) Bloody Mary I am reminded of a hidden AMEX benefit that not many new to the travel hacking game are aware of: recursive status matching.
Status Matching Example
See, the AMEX Platinum gives you free gold status at Hilton properties. Best Western wants to cut into the Hilton (well, really anyone’s) market share of profitable travelers. So Best Western offers status matching to any hotel chain in an attempt to easily gain business from already frequent hotel goers. Just log into the Status Match No Catch portal, fill out your form with your Best Western info and Hilton info, screenshot your Hilton gold status or get a digital copy of your Hilton status card, and send both to the email listed on the form.
Within about 15 mins (during business hours) Best Western will make you a Diamond member. It’s legit that easy. Why diamond and not gold? I think it has to do with the stays required at Hilton matched with the stays required at Best Western, but I’m not in the business of looking gift horses in the mouth.
Recursive Matching Example
Enter the recursive part. Since you are now a diamond member with Best Western, you can status match with Hilton for Hilton diamond. Yeah, I was pleasantly surprised too. This part gets a little harder as Hilton requires proof of one night stay at the chain you are matching to.
Can you find a Best Western night for $59? I did, in Raleigh, NC. Make your stay and head on over to the Hilton Status Match page, fill in your info, upload your new Best Western diamond status screenshot and the night receipt from your stay, and bam, Hilton Diamond. It has gotten a little harder since my match, as Hilton now gives you Diamond for 3 months but requires 8 stays in that time frame to keep it, instead of a straight year of status for free. Fear not, traveler, there is a way around this unfortunate rule.
Skip The Work
If you were to get the AMEX Hilton Aspire card, you would be granted automatic Hilton Diamond status for as long as you own the card. There, problem solved. The credit card world is ever-changing in its best strategies. Now take your Hilton Diamond status, however, you decide to acquire it, and rematch it back to Best Western for their Diamond Select status. Silly, right? I swear I just did this with 2 weeks left on my Hilton Diamond status. I’ll be using the AMEX Hilton Aspire card in July to get my Hilton Diamond status back (just waiting for the one year mark on my AMEX Delta Gold to hit so I can cancel without repercussion).
Disclaimer: the credit corner guy has now downed 2 mimosas and 2 bloody Mary’s at the Centurion lounge as of the conclusion of this article. He cannot be held responsible for any errors in grammar or facts in general at this time. #FreeDrinks make the layovers fun.