IHG brings back its generous ‘Accelerate’ promotion for May-July – here are my targets

As I trailed in an article yesterday, IHG Rewards Club, the Holiday Inn, HI Express, Crowne Plaza, InterContinental etc loyalty scheme, has launched a new promotion – IHG Accelerate.  Yes, it is repeating the one it has run every quarter since October 2015!

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 9) covers stays from 1st May to 31st July 2018

All hotels are participating

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

This was my target for 55,700 points maximum, comprising:

  • 2,000 points for a stay in May
  • 2,000 points on my next stay
  • 10,000 points for staying five nights
  • 9,600 points for two stays booked via the IHG app
  • 2,500 points for three stays booked via my corporate rate
  • 12,000 points for two stays in any country in North America, South America, Central America, Caribbean, Greater China, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa
  • 1,000 points for ANY redemption, including a cheap digital download
  • 2,000 points for getting either of the IHG credit cards
  • 14,600 points for completing six of the seven targets above, excluding the May bonus

This is a pretty weird selection to be honest.  It is unlikely that I can hit the countries bonus based on my current travel plans.   I will be in the US in May but New York is the sort of expensive city where you should redeem points and not pay cash.

A reader told me that ANY corporate rate code triggers that target.  It does not necessarily need to be the one stored in your account.  This can be handy if you are a contractor and have various different clients over the promotional period.

My wife got this one for a whopping 67,700 points:

  • 2,000 points for a stay in May
  • 2,000 points on her next stay
  • 10,000 points for staying five nights
  • 9,600 points for two stays booked via the IHG app
  • 6,000 points for staying one weekend
  • 18,000 points for two stays in any country in North America, South America, Central America, Caribbean, Greater China, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa
  • 1,500 points for paying for a stay with her IHG credit card
  • 18,600 points for completing five of the six targets above excluding the May bonus

This is more achievable although, unless some work travel comes up, she won’t be hitting the countries one.  5,500 points for a one-night stay in May, paid for on her IHG credit card, would be a decent result.

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 achieve $39 of cumulative spend (£27), you actually need to spend £33 due to the 20% VAT and in reality probably need to do £36 due to the FX rate IHG uses.

Here is a little tip.  If you travel with your partner, or even if you don’t but you don’t mind booking in their name, you might be able to maximise your points by splitting bookings across accounts.  This makes it less likely that you can get the ‘all targets hit’ extra bonus but, if that is unlikely anyway, mixing and matching may work best.

A note on rebooking

Most of the time, existing bookings – ie bookings made before 1st May – 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 May.  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.


As long as your target is sensible, this is highly likely to be the most generous hotel promotion this Summer.  And, with three 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.)

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  1. Anyone get 6 offers, and their bonus is “complete 6 out of 7”?

    • Yes – I have the same thing. When I add up all the points including the bonus, it is 2000 short of the maximum, so it seems there is a target worth 2000 points missing from my list (I think it might be the credit card signup one). If it doesn’t fix itself in the next few days I’ll contact them to ask about it.

    • Yes, my husband is in the same situation, with 3 out of 3, and only 2 actual offers, with 1500 missing from the total (possibly use IHG credit card), A Matt says, these sometimes get sorted out in a few days, but otherwise we’ll contact them. Especially since he has to achieve all 3 of the goals with no leeway, which is unusual in itself, but only knows what 2 of them are!

    • Are you viewing on a mobile? If so, try from a PC. I had the same issue, but the missing target was visible when I accessed from my computer (perhaps the mobile/computer thing was coincidence and it just fixed itself.)

      • I actually have the problem when viewing the page on my PC – but thanks to Scott’s suggestion, I’ve logged in on my mobile, and the missing 7th target (2000 points for credit card signup) is now shown in the list!

  2. Daniel says:

    My challenge is achievable if stays I book for my family count? If I book 4 rooms for 1 night at a HIE will that count for 4 of the 5 nights required, even though I personally will not be staying?

    2,000 Happy Birthday Bonus
    10,000 Stay More, Earn More Get closer to the rewards you want when you stay 5 night(s) and
    3,200 Travel with the IHG® App Book 2 stay(s) with the IHG® App and earn 3,200 bonus points.
    4,000 A Bonus Weekend Stay Stay with us for the weekend and earn 4,000 bonus points.
    6,600 . Earn 6,600 bonus points when you book 1 Bonus Points Package stay(s)
    8,000 Explore with Confidence
    5,000 Renew Your InterContinental® Ambassador Membership
    14,400 Your Achievement Bonus

  3. flibby says:

    I’ve got a pretty big one this time…
    Stay once – 2,000
    10 nights – 20,000
    Stay @ 4 HIX – 13,200
    Book 2 stays on app – 3,400
    3 corporate – 2,500
    Explore 2 countries from list – 18,000
    Redeem points – 1,000
    Complete 6 of 7 – 20.100
    Stay in May – 2,000

    Problem is I’ve just been made redundant (finish next month), and don’t know how much travel will be involved with whatever I do next. Even so I should be able to easily get a few of these.

  4. Earn 53,300 total bonus points.
    Complete all of your Accelerate offers and earn 53,300 total bonus points.

    My Offers

    2,000 Stay Once Get 2,000 bonus points
    10,000 Stay More, Earn More
    Get closer to the rewards you want when you stay 5 night(s) and earn 10,000 bonus points
    8,400 Stay at Holiday Inn Express®
    Stay at 2 Holiday Inn Express® hotel(s) and earn 8,400 bonus points
    9,600 Travel with the IHG® App
    Book 2 stay(s) with the IHG® App and earn 9,600 bonus points.
    1,500 Spend on your IHG® Rewards Club Credit Card
    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.
    1,000 Earn When You Redeem
    5,000 Become an InterContinental® Ambassador
    13,800 Your Achievement Bonus
    2,000 May Bonus Offer

    My plan is as follows:

    I have a business trip to St Petersburg in May – Crowne Plaza is already booked for 3 nights, so targets nos. 1) and 9) will be covered and 2) covered by 60%

    Then my partner and I will book two 1-night stays (not stands!) for summer weekends at HIXs somewhere nice near Heathrow or Gatwick, or elsewhere and will therefore cover 3) 4) and 5) and complete 2)

    My partner had 6) before and said he will help me to do this by downloading a song.

    I will consciously skip 7) – too much hassle but will have six targets done – enough to trigger 8)

    So, all in all 48,300 points in the pocket for about 100 pounds real spend, i.e. effectively buying points for 0.21p per point which is not bad at all, init?

  5. Ann Rowsell says:

    I’ve not only got the explore two countries target but also stay a night in Germany. We did have a long weekend in Berlin last Autumn but I wasn’t thinking of making a habit of it!

  6. Richard says:

    Quick question . I am in Shanghai 30 April to 3 May. There are plenty of IHG properties there . Will the part of a single booking within the new period count for q2 or is it better to make two separate bookings for the same hotel and then explain on arrival?


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