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IHG UK flash sale underway – rooms from £39, guaranteed to count for Accelerate promotion

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IHG (Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza, InterContinental etc) launched its 72-hour Winter flash sale yesterday.

You can book via the special flash sale page here.

You need to book by 9am (note, am) on Sunday 8th November.

You can book for stays between 1st December and 29th February 2016.

IHG Rewards Club 350The deals

At first glance, the prices are certainly not as generous as we have seen in recent Winter sales.  Anyone expecting rooms in Central London for £20.12 again will be disappointed.  Even Crowne Plaza The City, which I got for £49 last time, is at £89.

There is nothing in Central London at £39.  At £49, the new Indigo in Newcastle caught my eye.  Crowne Plaza Ealing and the Holiday Inn Express at Excel are the ‘best’ London options I think, although I’ve never visited the Holiday Inn Brent Cross.

At £69 your pickings improve – you’ll get the Holiday Inn Kensington Forum here, which is ugly but well located.  The Indigo in Glasgow is also £69.  To be honest, the best value is at the £89 level where you will get genuinely good hotels such as Crowne Plaza Kensington (reviewed here) and Crowne Plaza The City.

For an extra £10 you can add breakfast. This is worthwhile in most cases.

All nights are qualifying nights!

Here is the good news – rooms booked in this sale are guaranteed to receive IHG Rewards Club points.  This means that they will also qualify for the Accelerate promotion currently running.

Annoyingly, the guarantee that the rooms will qualify for points does not appear  on the special booking page or in the terms and conditions.  It was flagged clearly in the promotional email sent out yesterday, however.  It is also logical given that you must be an IHG Rewards Club member to book these deals.

A great arbitrage here via Accelerate

There is an opportunity here to get yourself a great deal on a hotel stay in 2016.

If you have been a long-time member of IHG Rewards Club, you will have been given a personalised target for the Accelerate promotion this Autumn.  Only you will know whether it is worth booking a mattress run (booking a hotel, turning up to check in, ruffling the sheets and then immediately leaving) to hit your qualifying target.

(This is my original article outlining Accelerate if you want to know more.)

For new IHG Rewards Club members, there is a great opportunity here

If you sign up for IHG Rewards Club from scratch and then register for Accelerate via this page, you will get a specific offer – complete four stays and receive two free nights at ANY IHG hotel during 2016.  The only ‘catch’ is that the hotel must be showing standard reward availability for the nights you want but this is rarely an issue – IHG forces its hotels to make 5% of rooms available every night for redemption. 

With sale nights running at £39 in this sale, you would be paying £156 for four nights if there is a suitable hotel near you.  If you used your two free nights at a top InterContinental hotel in New York, London, Paris etc, you would be getting around £500 of free rooms.  That is an impressive deal.

(For clarity, your four stays cannot be back-to-back stays at the same hotel – the hotel or IHG will merge them together when they post to your account and they will only count as one stay.)

Personally, I am two nights short of my Accelerate target so I will be looking to book two cheap nights under this promotion.  I just need to weigh up the arbitrage between paying a higher price for a hotel near my house or travelling out of London to get a far cheaper rate …..

(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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  1. EvilGazebo says:

    Slightly OT but my Accelerate target includes getting the IHG Visa. Problem is I’ve already got it! Suspect it was probably a timing thing where I applied for it just as they were generating the promo targets. Anyone else had this and had any joy getting them to either mark it as achieved or substitute another target?

    • carpentr says:

      I have the opposite problem – they want me to use my Credit Card which I cancelled just before the promotion. Three attempts on the phone have yielded no results, sadly.

      • I managed to convince them to deposit the bonus points (1,500) into my account. Just tell them you are disappointed as it will be impossible to accomplish all tasks, and you will consider switching your business to other chains for the rest of the year…

        It seems that they are not able to change the tasks for technical reasons.

    • In theory, they should do it. In reality, all these requests end up going to the Philippines contact centre and I wouldn’t put money on it. I would put in a request now and definitely not book mattress run nights until you have clarification, even it means you end up paying a few £ more.

  2. I appreciate this will depend on what’s available in your area, but these sale prices aren’t great for a mattress run to get the new member Accelerate bonus. When that launched I was able to book rooms for under £30.

    • I don’t think IHG has organised the sale in order to help people get the Accelerate bonus, to be fair…

  3. Managed to get 3 bookings at the HI Express in Glasgow for £39

  4. Mr(s) Entitled says:

    MAN Airport at 5 miles from me and for £39 it appears a decent outlay with regard getting two free nights elsewhere in 2016. I’m tempted but undecided.

    I’ve a ton of Hilton Points so I tend to favour their properties but coverage in Europe can be sporadic. Are IC hotels generally decent or do they vary significantly?

  5. Need some advice on how to get Spire Status the cheapest way:
    1) I need around 4000 qualifying points to get to Spire Status, my current plan is to transfer my Virgin FC miles to IHG and trigger the status that way…However, I was wondering

    2) If I stay one night with the accelerate promotion i get 5000 bonus points – do they count towards status? as a £89 stay even if paid with my IHG card is probably not going generate enough points. I think I would need to spend £2000 to get enough qualifying points..

    Any thoughts and comments welcome….

    • If you book a ‘Bonus Points’ package at a hotel (ie those hotels which offer a room for £99 or a room and 5,000 points for £120) then, yes, those 5,000 count for status.

      However, the points from Accelerate do not.

      If you’ve got the Virgin miles then I would just move those over. Your alternatives are slim – even if you applied for the IHG credit card today, for example, you probably wouldn’t be able to earn 4,000 points via spend (the sign-up bonus does not count) before the end of the year because of the delays in the points posting.

      • Thanks Rob. I already have the IHG Premium CC, just want to confirm the VISA Spend points ie 2 points for every £1 spent count towards status, I can’t find your old article about which earning methods count towards status.

        • Your credit card spend does qualify at 2pt per £1 but the points can take 3-6 weeks after your statement to post to your account so that could be too late to hit the target you want.

      • Also, how long did Virgin take to post the points on your IHG account, i.e if i do it today, it should be done before calender year over?

        • Takes about a week

        • FormalHall says:

          Similar question, how long do they take to update your status to Platinum? I have just received my first statement for the IHG Platinum CC and the 40,000 points posted some time ago but my status has not been upgraded.

    • Hi,

      I regularly book the 5,000 point package and the points from that are credited as qualifying points. Hope that answers the question.


  6. trickster says:

    Does anyone else have a target to “Book and pay for your next getaway at an IHG hotel using your IHG® Rewards Club Visa® card”, and can’t get it to trigger? I’ve done two stays now and one is over 3 weeks ago.

    • Yes – I had this, I have just fired off an email to them with screenshots of my B/C bill showing the amount and the reference number of the booking made! I tried tweeting them but to no avail!

      • I have just got the points for that target but it does take ages. I think the reason is that it can take up to a month for the credit card points to post in your IHG account, and then a further two to three weeks for IHG to register the accelerate target.

        • Trickster says:

          I assumed it would need to be after the credit card points post, but they’ve been in fur a couple of weeks now. I’ve emailed them.

    • Mine took 2-3 weeks to appear

  7. Has anyone received their Spire card in the post – I ordered mine on 23/9 – would be nice to get – may never get it again!

    • my wife’s arrived yesterday been spire since launch

    • Same here, the only way I’d ever get Spire again is if there was a promo where you get it after 5 nights or something…

      I’ve exclusively stayed in IHG since December 2013 – yet I haven’t paid for a stay since then either. I paid for 5 nights in Xmas 2013 which earned me so many points that I got a further 10 nights. Nearly ran out earlier this year but getting this IHG card and Supercard (for maxing out cash withdrawals) got me Spire plus another 8 free nights. When the points finally run out, I’ll still stay with IHG to maximise the Spire benefits until that expires.

      I don’t know if this was intentional by their marketing folks, but in the big scheme of things I’m nothing, only spent £300 + £99 card fee…

  8. Lolmil116 says:

    Have had a look through here and other sites and seen conflicting answers. Will as a new member 4 cheap stays allow 2 nights free at any hotel in the world? Some think it’s uk only and from what I can see on the site it doesn’t say either way. Also is free night availability as simple as checking they have reward nights available? Thank you.

  9. Hi I have a query. I have the below Accelerate offer.

    I phoned the IHG Rewards call centre (in Philippines) and they advised I only needed to stay four separate nights and that covered all the targets below.

    Does that sound correct?


    Stay Once Get 1,000
    Thank you for being a loyal IHG® Rewards Club member. Stay once and earn 1,000 bonus points

    Stay More, Earn More
    Get closer to the rewards you want when you stay 4 night(s) and earn 8,000 bonus points.

    Change Your View®
    Stay at 2 Holiday Inn® hotel(s)—including Holiday Inn Resort® and Holiday Inn Club Vacations®—and earn 8,000 bonus points

    Your Achievement Bonus
    Complete 3 of 4 offers and earn (an additional) 31,000 bonus points.

    • Sounds correct – except where is the 4th offer??

      • Hi thanks for the offer. Ah sorry I left off the 4th offer from the post as I wouldn’t be able to do it.

        The 4th offer was apply for the IHG credit card but I already have the Hilton card the new Barclaycard rules about only having one card means this one wouldn’t be achievable.

  10. how long does the accelerate promo take to update? we stayed on 31st oct, points posted but free nights didn’t. it still says “0 of 2 stays completed”. stayed 2 nights 2 different hotels.

  11. I think it is shocking that IHG has not said what benefits if any Spire Elite status brings. What incentive is there to aspire to this level other than being thanked for your loyalty at reception upon checking in. and maybe getting an upgrade to a slightly better room.

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