IHG brings back its generous ‘Accelerate’ promotion for Spring

Links on Head for Points pay us an affiliate commission. A list of our partners is here.

IHG Rewards Club, the Holiday Inn, HI Express, Crowne Plaza, InterContinental etc loyalty scheme, has launched its new Spring 2018 promotion – IHG Accelerate. Yes, it is repeating the Autumn 2015, Spring, Summer and Autumn 2016 and Spring, Summer and Autumn 2017 offer!

But that is not a bad thing.

To be honest, during the last two years IHG has been the only major hotel chain offering global promotions which offer genuine outsize value.  Everyone has their own personal target but, for most of us, the challenge is pretty straightforward.


Here are the headline details:

IHG Accelerate (Version 8) covers stays from 1st January to 30th April 2018

All hotels are participating

Your bonus is personalised – you need to log in here to discover yours 

This was my target for 49,000 points maximum, comprising:

  • 2,000 points for a stay in January
  • 5,000 points for referring a friend to IHG who completes a stay by 30th April
  • 2,000 points on my next stay
  • 10,000 points for staying five nights
  • 2,200 points for two stays booked via the IHG app
  • 7,200 points for staying three weekends
  • 2,500 points for two stays booked via my corporate rate (the company I haven’t worked for in 6 years!)
  • 2,800 points for booking two stays on a Bonus Points Package
  • 2,000 points for getting the IHG credit card
  • 11,300 points for completing six of the seven targets above, excluding the January and referral bonus

This is a pretty weird selection to be honest.  In theory I could trigger it with just five nights, but that assumes I stay at two hotels with a Bonus Points Package and, tougher, at two hotels where my old employer has a corporate deal.  And I need to pretend I still work there ….

My wife got this one for a whopping 82,300 points:

  • 2,000 points for a stay in January
  • 5,000 points for referring a friend to IHG who completes a stay by 30th April
  • 2,000 points on her next stay
  • 10,000 points for staying five nights
  • 10,800 points for staying three weekends
  • 2,400 points for booking a ‘points and cash’ redemption
  • 21,600 points for staying in three different countries outside the UK
  • 1,500 points for paying for a stay with her IHG credit card
  • 5,000 points for renewing her InterContinental Ambassador membership
  • 22,000 points for completing six of the seven targets above excluding the January and referral bonus

This is not going to happen.  There is very little chance of hitting the ‘three different countries’ target, which means she needs to get all the others.  Since there is zero chance of doing 3 x 2-night weekend stays in the next four months we can forget about Spring 2018.  We will obviously pick off individual bonuses if we can (5,500 points for a stay in January paid for on her IHG credit card is worth having) but the full target is not happening.

Note that if you have a target which involves meeting a certain ‘food and beverage’ spending target, this is EXCLUDING VAT for UK stays.  IHG also uses a weak exchange rate when converting your spend to US$.  If you were asked to acheive $39 of cumulative spend (£31), you actually need to spend £37 due to the 20% VAT and in reality probably need to do £40 due to the FX rate IHG uses.

A note on rebooking

Most of the time, existing bookings – ie bookings made before 1st January – made online do count for this promotion.

However, if you have an app booking target it DOES specifically state that stays must be booked after the 1st January.  And they mean it, as I found out to my cost once last year.  If you have a ‘book stays via the app’ target then be prepared to rebook in the new year.


As long as your target is sensible, this is highly likely to be the most generous hotel promotion you are likely to see this Spring.  And, with four months to hit your target, you have plenty of time to make the necessary stays.

Log in to the Accelerate website here, register and see what your target is!

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

IMPORTANT: No new articles on Saturday due to IT server migration
Highly critical YouGov report shows collapsing BA customer perceptions
Click here to join our email list and receive all of the latest Avios, miles and points news by 6am.

Amazon ad
About Head for Points

We help business and leisure travellers maximise their Avios, frequent flyer miles and hotel loyalty points. Visit every day for three new articles or sign up for our FREE emails via this page or the box to your right.


  1. rams1981 says:

    Got stay once for 2000 and globetrotter bonus for staying at one ihg outside home country.

    Yesterday I booked a stay in Cape Town on 6 Jan using points. Does that count for this?

    • rams1981 says:

      And just noticed 4000 for staying in Jan. So if stacks and points stay counts i get 14k points back? Redemption cost 15k points so that would be a result 🙂

    • Point redemption stays will not qualify for accelarate targets

      • RussellH says:

        I have had both points and cash and points only targets in the past, but unless you have these as a specific target, points stays do not count.

        • I had points & cash target, which didn’t stack with the “stay x nights” and ended up costing me more than it earned. Be very careful with these particular targets.

    • Lady London says:

      Hum. IIRC stays had to be both booked and consumed from 1st January and not before.

  2. Craig Strickland says:

    Change one reservation to bonus points for a total of 70700! Wowser!

  3. Hmm, it looks like I won’t get any easy bonuses except the ‘stay once’ one, despite having a 5 night stay booked, due to using an Ambassador cert for it – only 4 of the nights will count.

    Theoretically my stays are very achievable – 5 nights, including 2 weekend stays at HIX on bonus point packages, booked via the app, paid for by my credit card, for 45000.

    I’ve got no need to book any more hotel stays, though, and I don’t think it’s worth a mattress run – by the time I’ve paid out c. £150 for the nights on a bonus point package I may as well have just paid for the hotel room that the 45000 points would get me. It would be different if I was going to be somewhere with super-cheap HIXs.

    Stay Once Get 2,000 bonus points
    Stay More, Earn More
    Get closer to the rewards you want when you stay 5 night(s) and earn 10,000 bonus points
    Stay at 2 Holiday Inn Express® hotel(s) and earn 5,600 bonus points
    Book 2 stay(s) with the IHG® App and earn 2,200 bonus points.
    Stay 2 weekend(s), including a Saturday night and another night, and earn 8,000 bonus points
    Your Rate Bonus Points Package
    Earn 2,800 bonus points when you book and complete 2 Your Rate Bonus Point Package stay(s)
    Book and pay for one stay at any IHG hotel using your IHG® Rewards Club Premium Credit Card and earn 1,500 bonus points.
    Complete 6 of the 7 offers and earn (an additional) 11,000 bonus points.
    Stay once in January and get 2,000 bonus points.
    Refer a friend to enrol into IHG Rewards Club, and receive 5,000 bonus points.

  4. Robert Sharp says:

    Mine is for 158000 points!!!

    Shame I don’t travel for work any more otherwise I’d be raking it in 🙁

  5. “Book and pay for one stay at any IHG hotel using your IHG® Rewards Club Credit Card and earn 1,500 bonus points. Terms and Conditions apply.”

    So does one think this would be triggered for a redemption night that I’ve already got booked if the IHG card is listed on the account and used for incidentals?

  6. One of my offers is 2x stay for a weekend including a Saturday and one other night. The small print says

    A Saturday Stay is defined as any Stay with an unlimited number of nights having a Saturday night included within the Stay period. If a Stay is longer than 7 days, then the number of Saturdays that qualify is equivalent to the number of Saturday nights during that Stay period. This offer cannot be combined with any other offer.

    Re that last sentence – does this mean that it won’t work if I also, say, book through the app or book my bonus points package? I haven’t seen that no combining rule on any other offer.

  7. Need a reference point –

    One of my targets is “Spend on your IHG® Rewards Club Premium Credit Card – Book and pay for one stay at any IHG hotel using your IHG® Rewards Club Premium Credit Card and earn 1,500 bonus points. Terms and conditions apply”

    I no longer have the Premium card but have the Basic/Free/White IHG card, would that trigger it if I paid for a stay with it or does it have to be the premium version, will impact my strategy to achieve the 6 out of 7 goals.


  8. Brighton Belle says:

    Don’t believe those BOOK NOW enticements. On 2 Accelerate promotions I booked and was denied the points credit as the bookings were before the promotion start. So if you book anything, and I mean BOOK, before 01.01.2018 don’t be surprised if IHG refuse it. The detail of their T’s & C’s is critical to get your points.

  9. I have the most weird offer ever from them this time. I don’t know what to do with that as I am not a real globetrotter living at hotels all the time… Look for yourselves:

    Earn 46,400 total bonus points.
    Complete all of your Accelerate offers and earn 46,400 total bonus points.

    My Offers
    Points Value Offer Description Status
    2,000 January Bonus Offer
    Stay once in January and get 2,000 bonus points.
    5,000 Refer a Friend and Earn
    Refer a friend to enrol into IHG Rewards Club, and receive 5,000 bonus points. The referred member must complete their first stay by 30th April.
    2,000 Stay Once Get 2,000 bonus points
    Thank you for being a loyal IHG® Rewards Club member. Stay once and earn 2,000 bonus points.

    10,400 Stay 8 Nights
    Get an additional 10,400 bonus points after night 8.

    3,000 Stay 3 more nights
    Get an additional 3,000 bonus points after night 11.

    3,000 Stay 3 more nights
    Get an additional 3,000 bonus points after night 14.

    3,000 Stay 3 more nights
    Get an additional 3,000 bonus points after night 17.

    3,000 Stay 3 more nights
    Get an additional 3,000 bonus points after night 20.

    15,000 Stay 3 more nights
    Get an additional 15,000 bonus points after night 23.

  10. Hmm. I have to renew my Ambassador status, during the promotion period, even though it doesn’t expire until 2019!

    • I thought AMB only lasts a year once you’ve bought it?

      • You can renew it before it expires. I renewed mine a month ago hence the 2019 expiry

        • It might actually credit and if not worth asking. My AMB Accelerate target credited even before I had renewed AMB.

  11. Graham Walsh says:

    I need to book some nights in January, just purchased some points using the 100% offer to do a Points + Cash stay in Jan. I’ve read the T&Cs and can’t see it saying you must book on or after 01.01.18. Anyone have any thoughts? I know previous reports has said must book after.

    • Historically app-related tasks have required a booking in the promo period, others have not irrespective of the rules. This is probably because IHG cannot accurately track booking dates via some channels, eg direct with hotel.

      However … as IHG can track the booking date of a redemption since it must go via the website, there is a higher than usual chance of enforcing it.

      I would book the room now if it is available but rebook on 1st January if availability is still there.

  12. John O’Sullivan says:

    Mine is awesome

    Stay once 2k
    Stay 5 nights 10k
    Stay 3 Brands 19.2k
    Book 1 points/cash 2.4k
    Book 2 with app 3.2k
    Spend 39$ 600pts
    Book on card 1.5k
    Complete 6 from 7 14k
    Stay once in Jan 2k

    Very achievable, best set for me since first accelerate.

  13. I feel a little silly asking this but does is a Holiday Inn a Holiday Inn® hotel?

  14. How likely is it a U.K. Hotel, and hopefully near London like when Croydon was on last year, will appear on the 5,000 point a night ihg redemptions? At the moment there is nothing in the u.k at all.

    • That was the only hotel in or near London to appear on the PB list ever (so in about 5 years).

      Until a couple of years ago the HI Wembley was only 10k per night, every night, and it had been fully refurbished. A friend of mine actually moved in for a week whilst his flat was being decorated.

Please click here to read our data protection policy before submitting your comment.