News in brief:
100% IHG Rewards Club ‘buy points’ bonus – three days only
IHG Rewards Club – the InterContinental, Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza etc scheme – has brought back its ‘100% buy points bonus’ promotion. It is as generous an offer as you will ever see for IHG points.
The page to buy points is here. The deal runs until midnight New York-time on the 19th.
Here are the standard purchase rates which do NOT include the bonus:
- 1,000 – 10,000 points for $13.50 per 1,000 points
- 11,000 – 25,000 points for $12.50 per 1,000 points
- 26,000 – 60,000 points for $11.50 per 1,000 points
You receive a 100% bonus with any order of 5,000 points or more. With a 100% bonus, you would be able to buy 120,000 IHG points for (at current exchange rates) £535. This assumes your credit card has 0% FX fees.
Here are a few examples of how this deal may work.
At the top end of the IHG Rewards Club portfolio, you have InterContinental properties which top out at 50,000 – 60,000 points per night. That’s what you would pay for InterContinental Le Grand in Paris or the InterContinental Amstel in Amsterdam.
With a 100% bonus, IHG is effectively selling you a night at a 50,000 point property for £223 all-in. A 60,000 point hotel would be £268. At the bottom end, the points for a 5,000 point PointBreaks night would cost just £23.
The continual devaluation of some top IHG properties into the 60,000 points category makes this offer less generous than it was. The fall in the value of the £ also makes this deal worse – although if you are redeeming for hotels in the USA or a ‘pegged’ country like the UAE it nets off.
The maximum number of points you can buy per year is 120,000 (ie 60,000 plus the 60,000 bonus).
American Express Platinum adds new lounges
If you have an American Express Platinum charge card, you can benefit from a new deal signed with ‘Escape’ lounges, the small airport lounge company owned by Manchester Airports Group (MAG).
As well as the ‘Escape’ lounges in its UK airports, MAG also operates Escape-branded lounges in the US. These are at Minneapolis, Oakland and Bradley International (Hartford).
Effective immediately, these lounges can be accessed – with up to TWO guests – with an American Express Platinum card issued in any country.
Oakland will be of interest if you are looking at the Norwegian or British Airways services from Gatwick. Aer Lingus is now serving Hartford.
72 hour Hilton Japan flash sale
I wouldn’t normally mention a niche sale like this, but given the large volume of Japan coverage on Head for Points in recent weeks I thought it tied in.
Stays must be completed by 30th December. Bookings are non-refundable so the discount is not genuinely 50% (a non-refundable room is always cheaper than Best Available Rate) but there will be some decent savings to be had.
Full details can be found on the Hilton website here.
How to earn Hilton Honors points and status from UK credit cards (August 2022)
There are various ways of earning Hilton Honors points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.
Do you know that holders of The Platinum Card from American Express receive FREE Hilton Honors Gold status for as long as they hold the card? It also comes with Marriott Bonvoy Gold, Radisson Rewards Gold and MeliaRewards Gold status. We reviewed American Express Platinum in detail here and you can apply here.
EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.
Did you know that the Virgin Atlantic credit cards are a great way of earning Hilton Honors points? Two Virgin Points can be converted into three Hilton Honors points. The Virgin Atlantic cards are the only Visa or Mastercard products in the UK which can indirectly earn Hilton Honors points. You can apply here.
You can also earn Hilton Honors points indirectly with:
- American Express Gold (20,000 bonus Amex points)
- American Express Rewards Credit Card (5,000 bonus Amex points)
and for small business owners:
- American Express Business Gold (20,000 bonus Amex points)
- American Express Business Platinum (40,000 bonus Amex points)
The conversion rate from American Express to Hilton points is 1:2.
(Want to earn more hotel points? Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)