IHG launches ‘double miles’ promo as alternative to IHG Accelerate

I wrote a long article on the new Accelerate promotion from IHG Rewards Club a fortnight ago.  If you got lucky with the offer they targetted you for, it is likely to be the most generous hotel offer this Autumn.  My own personal target would get me £440-worth of IHG Rewards Club points for staying just four nights if I select the right brands.

You can check your own Accelerate target by signing up here.

If you are not already an IHG Rewards Club member then you get an even better deal because new members will be given a target of ‘do two stays, get a free night, do four stays, get two free nights’.  You could do four stays at a cheap Holiday Inn Express and turn that into two nights at a very expensive InterContinental in Paris, New York, Sydney, London etc.

For some people, though, Accelerate might not work out.  Perhaps you will only have one or two IHG (Holiday Inn, HI Express, Crowne Plaze, InterContinental etc) stays during the period, which is unlikely to be enough to trigger a big Accelerate bonus.

If so, IHG has an alternative promotion for you.

IHG Rewards Club 350

Double Up‘ will earn you double airline miles on every stay you make between now and the end of the year.

(At least, I think it does.  The wording is vague.  The small print says “Double miles will be awarded on all Qualifying Stays after completing 1st Qualifying Stay” which could imply that you only get double miles from your 2nd stay.  The main website says “we’re offering you double miles when you stay at an IHG hotel, starting with your next stay”.)

In order to get this offer, you need to register at this page and change your IHG Rewards Club profile to earn ‘miles’ instead of ‘points’.

I should warn you that the Avios points you earn if you take miles instead of IHG Rewards Club points are not great:

  • Earn 500 Avios per qualifying stay at participating InterContinental Hotels and Resorts, located outside of the USA, Canada, Mexico, Latin America and Caribbean
  • Earn 2 Avios per $1 spent at InterContinental Hotels and Resorts located in the USA, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, Latin America, Crowne Plaza Hotels and Resorts and Hotel Indigo
  • Earn 1 Avios per $1 spent at Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Candlewood Suites & Staybridge Suites

These numbers are doubled during this promotion.

Most people will be better off with the main Accelerate promotion.  For the rest of you, double miles will be better than nothing on a one-off IHG stay.

You can register for double miles and find out more here.

(Want to earn more hotel points?  To see our complete list of promotions from the major chains, click here to visit our ‘Hotel Promos’ page or use the link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

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Comments

  1. IIRC accor are offering 2500 flying blue points per stay in France so it’s possible they may bring back last years similarly lucrative avios offer. Therefore anyone planning on using the IHG offer might want to consider booking flexible rates to keep their options open.

    • …or perhaps not. John at loyaltylobby has just posted the autunm winter accor promotion for Iberia avios is just triple miles.

      • That is the promo for setting your account to miles. Points promo to follow.

        • Yes, the 3×2 night stays for 10000 points coming back this week, 11500 points for those booming early. However, I was hoping we would see the return of 2500 avios/stay too.

  2. I’m lucky enough to have been sent the offer of reserve 4 stays and get 2 stays free. I have calculated a possible 2 intercontinental nights from 4 x £38.00 IHG reservations.

    Combined with the 200,000 points I picked up in their last sale,(around £185 per 50,000), that should equate to 6 nights at a well choosen Intercontinental hotel. With an additional payed weekend night free,(Ambassador voucher), if I invest in Ambassador membership and buy the first weekend room, at the Ambassador rate.

    But be warned. I was told from both Intercontinental’s in both Tokyo and Hong Kong, that there is no guarantee that they will respect Ambassador benefits, when booking rooms with points.

    IE Both told me that I would have to either downgrade rooms or pay a supplement to continue staying in the upgraded Ambasador rooms,(for the subsequent nights that I would have reserved with IHG points);after the weekend Ambasador rate room and the weekend voucher redemption room stays had passed.

    Slightly confusing and I hope I’ve explain it correctly.

    Rob has kindly told me that he has never been refused these benefits. We shall wait and see how they deal with me.

    Thanks again for all the advice Rob

    Ronster

    • Not sure why you need to discuss it with the hotels in advance. Just make your bookings with the upgraded weekend first. Check in and present all your reservations without making an issue out of it. If my own experience is anything to go by, chances are you will stay in same room unless occupancy is high and others have genuinely booked the room for higher rates on subsequent nights. However, in cities like Tokyo and HK there is a strong likelihood that the hotel will be heavily booked and the room you want to hold onto amongst them. You would expect to get what you pay for so you can’t reasonably begrudge shifting rooms if necessary so that somebody else can get what they paid for. Status recognition in Asia hotels is generally very good.

      • Hi James. Thanks for your thoughts. I only brought this up with both hotels, because I had recieved mixed information from different sources and thus wanted to hear there individual perspective. I know full well that you get what you pay for. If it means switching hotel rooms from an upgraded room to a standard pounts award room, so be it. Not a problem.

        Should be finalising this weekend on whether to plan to use the points for the my far east trip. Or get more value for money in an Intercontinental stay with basic rooms starting per night from £300+

        Ronster

        • Ronster, even their worst rooms are going to be great so doesn’t really matter. Besides in such great cities who wants to spend muchtime in hotel room anyway. From reports here and on flyertalk it is clear that contacting hotels can sometimes pay dividends but I generally leave alone unless I’ve had to do so. I prefer to leave it to reception where you can always say something or escalate matters face to face if need be. Enjoy your trip.

          • Exactly, let the hotel reception surprise you!

          • Looking at IC rates for both Tokyo and Hong Kong they are indeed quite reasonable for the standard room, that otherwise you could redeem using IHG points.

            Therefore in my opinion, it’s not worth redeaming my IHG points for.

            This is especially clear with the hotels intentions to NOT keep me in the hotel upgrade. This is not them being full of surprises, this is them running a business efficiently, which I respect.

            In the end I’ve found a boutique hotel in both locations, with better ratings and more value for money+better guarantees that I will have more benefits listed below.

            I looked at the FHR benefits and Propellor travel with various IC combinations and other hotel choices. In the end I choose from 2 web sites, both offering similar benefits.

            (The FHR benefits really pushed the overall IC pricing above what I was willing to accept)

            These include Early/After 4pm check out, Breakfast and room upgrades.(Lucky enough to have the 4pm options guaranteed due to Late flights from either location).

            Tablet Hotels (https://www.tablethotels.com) offered their choice with a complimentory “Tablet Plus” with the above benefits for my Tokyo visit.

            For Hong Kong I booked with Small Luxury Hotels of the world (http://www.slh.com). Again with the above benefits, which I could have booked my Amex Platinum Travel Service but as an SLH member I had access to better rate and cancelation choices.

            Another web site that you can gain similar benefits when booking via Amex Platinum Travel Service is Design Hotels (https://www.designhotels.com).They tend to offer more early check in possibilities.

            Thank you to everyone for their input

            Ronster

    • A couple of weeks ago we stayed at the IC HK, two nights on Into The Nights, Thursday, Friday and paid best flexible rate for a harbour view room that would upgrade us to a junior suite on the Saturday night with Ambassador voucher for the Sunday night. I am Spire Ambassador. Received written confirmation that we would have a city view room for the first two nights and the upgrade to the harbour view suite for the second two nights but if we wanted to have the junior suite for all four nights the cost would be 1,600hkd per night. We declined.
      WARNING there is massive building work going on right next door at the IC HK, very loud and unsightly by the pool that is seeing the pool area devoid of people and as an amateur photographer who gets out at 4 am you shoot the dawn and then wants to sleep part of the day, this was a non starter. Complained and were moved to the junior suite a day early and offered two 75 minute massages. The harbour room view windows condensed so badly due to the air temp differences from inside to outside we could not even see the view. Given a refund of the Saturday night stay but in the end, a less than enjoyable stay at this property.
      Finally, this hotel is set to be refurbished over eighteen months in 2017 as it had just been acquired by World Hotels or something like that, a quick Google search will turn up the relevant info.

    • Well, to be fair IC hotels do not require to provide AMB upgrade when staying on points.

      I have not stayed at any IC’s in Tokyo, but IC HK is well known on flyertalk for being a bit less generous (unless you are RA) Having saing that, the service of this IC HK is very good.

      The strategy of paying first night on a better room (assuming we are talking about one of the Harbour view room) and hope to stay on the same room for the rest of nights that booked on points, will not usually work on IC HK. They will usually contact you/or on check in to offer a fee for staying at the same room for the duration of your stay….

      As regarding upgrade on reward nights. IC HK has many other category rooms that are not showing on the website for booking….so on points stay they will usually upgrade you to one of those Plaza View room. However, the construction next to it has been going for a long time now, it could be a bit disturbing for some rooms.

  3. I’m also considering 4 cheap HIX nights (I’m not yet an ihg member) to ‘bank’ a couple of IC nights. The HIX stays need to be completed this year but is there a limit by which I’d have to make my IC stays? Thanks for advice.

  4. Dannyrado says:

    OT: Anyone have any ideas when the 2016 virtuoso, FHR, etc, etc. 3rd, 4th night free offers start to become available??
    I have something cancellable for Easter 2016, but it’s eye wateringly expensive. Silly season in Dubai.

    • Head for Points says:

      FHR deals tend to launch November / December – quite late.

      Note that there is now a permanent Jumeirah deal running for Amex Plat cardholders which is separate to FHR. Log on to the Amex Platinum website for details – you get ‘443’, breakfast etc. I assume this can be booked for next Easter already.

      You should have looked at buying Hilton points in the recent promo for the Waldorf-Astoria on the Palm. Given the £500 / night room rates in Dubai over Easter it would probably have worked out OK. The Doubletree at Jumeirah would have been even better.

      • Head for Points says:

        The new InterCon at Dubai Marina may also be worth a look for a redemption next Easter, especially if you can rack up some points via Accelerate.

        • Dannyrado says:

          Thanks.

          Thought of all that. Pool at intercon not very kid friendly. Stayed in the doubletree last Christmas, didn’t like it.

          443 interesting, I’ll take a look.

  5. Remember that most people have ‘5,000 points for first stay’ as one of their offers. So even those who have silly targets will get 5,000 points for a stay, which might still make it better than the double miles promotion.

    • I’m still sulking about my lousy offer but yes I guess even I will get 5000 points – better than the doubles points offer.

  6. Nice, I have 5000 points for first stay + 5000 points for a stay in September and they explicitly point out they add up and a first stay in September will give me 10000 points! There is also a 6000 for 3 nights, so a 3 nights stay in September should give 16000 points.

  7. Slightly OT, sorry can’t think of anywhere better to ask this.
    On your main IHG review article http://www.headforpoints.com/2014/02/13/hotel-analysis-ihg-rewards-club-the-facts/ you suggest you can buy Gold membership for $50. I can’t see how to do this, is it still possible; or is it done by the “cash and cancel trick” mentioned http://www.headforpoints.com/2015/07/29/new-ihg-rewards-club-buy-points-bonus-of-50-100/ (by virtue of the additional 10,000 points that appear. Actually can you go up in status by points purchased, or just those gained on stays?

    • You can’t get status via a points purchase.

      You could buy Gold directly for $50 via ihg.com. Has this disappeared?

      You get Gold free with the free IHG Visa card and if you pay £99 for the premium version you get free Platinum.

      • Thanks – I can’t find a purchase gold option on the uk site. Using google I came across the US version of the site where it said you could but this was IHG business card which seems a bit different, in the same FAQ entry it said you needed 15 stays for gold whereas UK it’s 10 ! Anyway given it’s only for the current calendar year it’s probably only worth doing in January!

        • I tried applying for an IHG card but was declined. hopefully this is because i already hold another barclaycard rather than Ive become un-credit-worthy!
          on the subject of ihg accelerate (cant comment on that article) i’ve taken my first stay, reward points have come through, but it doesnt show on the accelerate page – does this normally take longer or does it mean my first stay didn’t count for whatever reason.

          • Yes, it lags – and last year they had problems with stays posting, hopefully now fixed

          • sorry to go on but it seems ive not been credited enough points.
            looking at the detail the room rate i paid was 49 gbp, it shows as 40.83 so thats the ex-vat amount. this then converts to 62.82 usd and then on the very last line I’ve been given points on 52.35 usd – 10 usd difference is about 20 percent so it seems vat has been removed twice . surely this is not normal ! I am rapidly going off this scheme.

          • This happened to me once IIRC. Email IHG.

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