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We missed a trick … the new IHG Rewards ‘double points’ hotel bonus is ELITE QUALIFYING

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Last week we ran an article on the new IHG Rewards ‘double points’ promotion, which starts on 1st February.

You need to register here.

When I wrote this up, I missed a key point. The bonus points you earn from this promotion are elite qualifying.

Having the bonus points counting towards elite status is a big deal.

In March 2022, IHG Rewards is relaunching. From the launch date – and we don’t know the exact date – you will need to earn the following for elite status:

  • Silver – requires 10 nights
  • Gold – requires 20 nights or 40,000 base points
  • Platinum – requires 40 nights or 60,000 base points
  • Diamond – requires 70 nights or 120,000 base points

However, until March, the current status levels require FAR fewer base points. This is partly because the new scheme makes it harder to earn status, and partly because there is a 25% covid mitigation in place.

You currently need:

  • Gold – requires 7 nights or 7,500 base points
  • Platinum – requires 30 nights or 30,000 base points
  • Spire – requires 55 nights or 55,000 base points

If you could hit the targets above before the new programme launches in March, you would lock in status at the old points requirement and keep it until the end of 2023.

How does the maths work?

Let’s take Platinum Elite.

You currently need 30,000 base points. This require $3,000 of pre-tax hotel spending, so around £2,200 of pre-tax spending.

From 1st February until whenever the new scheme launches in March, this is effectively halved. You’d earn Platinum Elite with around £1,100 of pre-tax spending, because your 100% points bonus is (unusually) elite qualifying.

Even if you already have Spire Elite top tier status, pushing a few expensive stays towards IHG Rewards in February and March – to earn double status points – would soften the blow of the huge jump in base points needed for Diamond in 2023.

IHG Rewards Club double points Autumn 2020 bonus

Here is a reminder of how the new IHG Rewards promotion works.

How does IHG’s new ‘2x’ promotion work?

This is how it goes:

  • You earn 2 x base points on every stay during the promotional period after registration
  • Your bonus points count towards elite status
  • Existing bookings count
  • You must complete your stays between 1st February and 31st March

Existing bookings DO count so there is no need to rebook anything.  Only one room per stay counts towards the offer, so if you are booking multiple rooms you should put each in a different name.

How many points will I earn?

The standard earning rate in IHG Rewards is 10 points per US$1 (73p) excluding taxes.  I value an IHG Rewards point at 0.4p although you can often do better, which means your base return is 4p per 73p spent, ie 5.5%.

Under this offer, a member with no IHG status would receive 11.0% back in points.  This isn’t bad, of course, but we’ve seen better.

Of course, most HfP readers will have some sort of IHG Rewards status.  This comes with a status bonus (applies to base points only):

  • 10% bonus for Gold Elite
  • 50% bonus for Platinum Elite
  • 100% bonus for Spire Elite

This means that a Spire Elite member will be earning 30 points per $1.  This is 12p of points for every 73p spent ex-VAT, or a return of 16.4%.

IHG Rewards Club bonus points double points Autumn 2020

Conclusion

Now that I know the bonus points from the new IHG Rewards promotion count for elite status, I am more positive about the offer.

That said …. given the HUGE increase in the base points needed for top tier status (120,000 points in 2022 vs 55,000 points in 2021), it is unlikely to make a lot of difference to most people who currently have Spire Elite. They are heading for a downgrade from Diamond Elite next year irrespective of the impact of this new offer.

For some people, however, the ability to run up a lot of status qualifying IHG Rewards points during February and March will be attractive.

Click here to register for IHG’s double points promotion.  It kicks in for stays from 1st February.


IHG One Rewards update – May 2023:

Get bonus points: IHG One Rewards is not currently running a global bonus points promotion.

New to IHG One Rewards?  Read our overview of IHG One Rewards here and our article on points expiry rules here. Our article on ‘What are IHG One Rewards points worth?’ is here.

Buy points: If you need additional IHG One Rewards points, you can buy them here.

IHG One Rewards is offering an 80% bonus when you buy points by 7th June.

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

Comments (26)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Phillip says:

    I know this has been discussed before, but I started 2022 with my account showing “Elite Status Expiration 31/12/2023” before any activity. Do I take it at face value or is there a mistake somewhere in the system?

    • Rob says:

      Looks wrong to me …..

    • John says:

      My account has never showed an expiry date and my spire was maintained for 3 years without meeting the criteria before unceremoniously dropping to platinum, still with no expiry date.

    • Julie M says:

      I have the same Phillip, my app says my Spire Elite status expires 31/12/2023.

  • Vit says:

    I supposed this also work for any expense made during the reward night stay but I forgot to register this before my stay last week at Kimpton Maalai. 🙁

    • Tariq says:

      Registration open now but offer only applies from 01/Feb.

      • Vit says:

        Ah true! Just read that — maybe for next month stay at IC Hua Hin then. 🙂

        • Michael C says:

          Hey, Vit – glad you made it to Thailand! We’ll be doing Hua Hin Marriott in Aug., mainly based on the kids’ pool activities there, but love the IC, as well as the Centara.

    • Julie M says:

      I stayed at Seafire Resort in January and didn’t see any points appear for food and beverage spend for the reward stay. Emailed IHG and they stated Kimpton food and beverage doesn’t earn points.

  • Paul Pogba says:

    “This require $3,000 of pre-tax hotel spending, so around £2,200 of pre-tax spending.”

    Should one of these be “post-tax”?

    • WaynedP says:

      Don’t think so. Merely an illustrative currency conversion, not a change in the nature of the spend.

  • Barry cutters says:

    What happens to thr 25k bonus .

    I can’t remember I’d the new one is issues on jan 1st ? Or is it at thr point of qualifying for spice for the following year .

    Looking now I can’t see anywhere in my account to make the choice between that and the gifted plat membership .
    Surely I achieved spire on the existing terms last year so I should still be entitled to it ?

    • Rob says:

      In theory yes, but I don’t think anyone has them.

      That 25k bonus is scrapped with the new programme.

      • Barry cutters says:

        Worth raising a complaint ?

      • Secret Squirrel says:

        Do you get the annual 25k spire benefit if your anniversary date is before the new tier requirements?

        • Rob says:

          No idea. Arguably you should as it will be a published benefit on the day you hit Spire.

    • ChrisC says:

      Option only shows on the web version of the IHG site not the app

      • Barry cutters says:

        Not even on website for me -or perhaps I’m not looking in right place : can you explain where it is? Thanks

  • strickers says:

    As an aside, the 5k & 6k for stays using the IHG card finally turned up. I’m fairly certain I only used the card for incidental spend, my employer paid the room bill.

  • Chris B says:

    The 2xbonus may help participants reach a target, but we all know that IHG are not very good at posting the points, with T&C’s allowing from 6-8 weeks to post. So the bonus points for stays in Feb may not post till April !! As an example, despite contacting IHG customer services I am still waiting for the IHG CC 11k bonus points for stays back in November.

  • lumma says:

    Has anyone lost their status after having their creation card closed yet? I’m still platinum at the moment – although I may have actually qualified for it through card spend. I did enough nights to get gold anyway.

    • DevonDiamond says:

      Never lost mine after my Barclaycard closed. Perhaps you’ll keep it

  • Craig V says:

    This is what “My Account” says on the IHG web site:

    Ways to qualify for IHG® Rewards Elite status
    All members’ programme status has been automatically extended through February 2023.
    This is IHG Rewards Elite Status earning structure until the new programme launches. For details on the new programme’s Elite Status earning structure, visit here.

    GOLD ELITE

    PLATINUM ELITE

    SPIRE ELITE
    Qualifying Points 7,000 30,000 55,000
    Qualifying Nights 7 30 55

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