I receive occasional emails from readers asking ‘How can I stop my IHG Rewards Club points from expiring?’ or ‘When do my IHG Rewards Club points expire?’. This updated series looks at the major hotel loyalty programmes and shows you how to keep your valuable points intact.
If you need to refer to this article in the future, there is a link to it on our ‘Hotel Promos’ page in the IHG Rewards Club section. This page also includes details of current IHG promotions.
About IHG Rewards Club
IHG Rewards Club is the hotel loyalty scheme for avid, Candlewood Suites, Crowne Plaza, EVEN, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Hotel Indigo, HUALUXE, InterContinental, Kimpton, Regent, Staybridge Suites and voco.
When do IHG Rewards Club points expire?
This is what clause 24 of the IHG Rewards Club terms and conditions says:
Point Expiration. CLUB LEVEL MEMBERSHIP POINTS (SEE MEMBER BENEFITS, INCLUDING LEVELS OF MEMBERSHIP, HERE) WILL EXPIRE IF YOUR MEMBERSHIP ACCOUNT BECOMES INACTIVE FOR ANY PERIOD OF TWELVE (12) MONTHS OR LONGER, WHICH MEANS YOUR POINTS WILL BE REMOVED FROM YOUR ACCOUNT AND WILL NO LONGER BE AVAILABLE FOR REDEMPTION. To maintain the Points in your membership account, you must have at least one “earn” or “redeem” transaction posted to your account every twelve (12) months. Use of the one night per year provided to IHG Rewards Club credit card holders does not constitute an “earn” or “redeem” activity to prevent Point expiration. If you redeem Points for a Stay and subsequently cancel that Stay, the redemption activity does not prevent Point expiration. Points do not expire for current Elite Members, although Points may expire twelve (12) months after an Elite Member’s account moves to Club level if there is no “earn” or “redeem” activity during those twelve (12) months.
What do they mean by ‘one earn or redeem transaction’?
The key point is that YOU DO NOT NEED TO STAY AT A HOTEL TO KEEP YOUR POINTS ALIVE. You simply need to have some activity go through your account.
Remember that elite status members do not need any activity at all – your points will not expire for as long as you have status.
There are various ways of achieving some activity on your account:
Use points.com to transfer points from an airline frequent flyer scheme (not Avios) into IHG – current supported airlines are Hainan, Aeroplan, Icelandair, JetBlue, Frontier, and Hawaiian
Receive a transfer of points from another member ($5 fee per 1,000)
Transfer points from Hertz Gold Plus Rewards into IHG
Transfer Virgin Flying Club miles into IHG (minimum 10,000, 1:1 rate) – these transfers no longer count towards status
Transfer Finnair Plus miles into IHG – these transfer have never counted towards status
Book a restaurant on Open Table using the special IHG link here
You cannot transfer American Express Membership Rewards points into IHG Rewards Club, unless you do it via Virgin Flying Club or Finnair Plus.
You cannot earn points from dining at an IHG hotel if you are not a registered guest.
Transfer points to another member – this only requires a minimum of 1,000 points and costs $5
Transfer points into an airline scheme. However, this requires a minimum 10,000 point transfer.
Redeem for gift cards or merchandise. IHG has a catalogue of items you can buy, starting at 4,000 points for a £5 shopping voucher. This is a very poor deal however. The IHG Digital Rewards catalogue has songs for under 500 points which is a better option is all you want to do is reset the expiry date.
As you can see, there is no excuse at all for letting IHG Rewards Club points expire.
How to be notified of upcoming miles and points expiry dates
If you want to track the expiry dates of all of your miles and points, I recommend signing up to AwardWallet for free. It keeps all of your points balances, including non-travel loyalty schemes, in one place and updates them automatically. If you pay for the premium version ($30 per year) it also tracks your all expiry dates and emails you when points are about to expire. On the free plan, you can track the expiry date for three loyalty schemes of your choice.