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Forums Hotel loyalty schemes IHG One Rewards Should I renew InterContinental Ambassador?

  • David 15 posts

    Mine is due for renewal soon but it’s simply not worth it if it no longer prolongs Diamond status, even if it was a glitch.
    I only stay at a few IHG hotels per year so once Diamond expires I’ll stop staying at IHG’s and focus more on Marriott.
    I never really made the most of Diamond but it was always nice to have.

    phantomchickenz 319 posts

    I’ve decided to go for the renewal. Three IC stays planned already this year, with the last at Paris ale Grand where the voucher saving pays the renewal fee.

    Just reached out to the O2 (my next stay) for any offer if I renew with them, and they’ve offered:

    – Guaranteed Junior Suite (from King Classic)
    – Complimentary desert plate.

    This is instead of the 15,000 points (I expect).

    Doesn’t quite seem enough to me to outweigh the points. Would you take it?

    BBbetter 638 posts

    I’ve decided to go for the renewal. Three IC stays planned already this year, with the last at Paris ale Grand where the voucher saving pays the renewal fee.

    Just reached out to the O2 (my next stay) for any offer if I renew with them, and they’ve offered:

    – Guaranteed Junior Suite (from King Classic)
    – Complimentary desert plate.

    This is instead of the 15,000 points (I expect).

    Doesn’t quite seem enough to me to outweigh the points. Would you take it?

    You’ll get the 15k points. That points is from IHG and not the hotel.
    I paid at same hotel (ignorantly didn’t ask for anything in return) and got the points.

    phantomchickenz 319 posts

    Oh, good to know, and obviously makes it a no brainer. I’ve gone back to them asking them to throw in lounge access anyway 🙂

    NorthernLass 7,573 posts

    I think you have to have a very specific plan for making the most of Ambassador. I’ve not used mine to the best advantage this year, but feel I’m still doing well from the Diamond breakfasts! Ambassador expires in April (I did manage to get an extension by grovelling and used the free night at the ICPL). However, the rest of my travel for this year is planned and doesn’t require Ambassador. We have 2 ICs booking, but both are on OH’s account.

    I do have the Le Grand on my wish list, though, and am thinking of visiting France in May next year to coincide with the 80th anniversary of VE Day (OH is a bit of a military history geek). I also have a Creation free night certificate which will still be valid at that point. So it feels like it would be very good value to get 3 nights for the price of one at Le Grand, by re-joining Ambassador just prior to the trip. I assume I will be down to Platinum by then, so may book a few nights at the new IC Chantilly via Emyr to recoup the breakfast benefit and also get the Ambassador perks.

    Of course if IHG introduced free breakfast for Ambassadors, or an equivalent benefit, more people might be tempted to renew their membership as soon as it expires!

    phantomchickenz 319 posts

    Oh, good to know, and obviously makes it a no brainer. I’ve gone back to them asking them to throw in lounge access anyway 🙂

    No lounge access, but does include the points.

    I hope the cake is nice.

    Pangolin 108 posts

    The problem with Ambassador is that they often gouge you on the Free Night rate which needs to be booked separately from a normal booking.

    Recently I stayed in the IC Doha West Bay, where I combined a normal cash booking (2 nights) with the AMB booking (2 nights, second night free). The normal cash booking was also Flex and not pre-paid.

    Standard cash booking: 650 QAR/nt
    AMB booking 1100 QAR/nt

    So with the ‘second night free’ I only saved 200 QAR (around 50 EUR) off the standard rate for those 2 nights.

    phantomchickenz 319 posts

    Sounds like you would have been better off booking the lot through Emyr. I’ve done the sums, and locked in my new AMB certificate already for a stay at Amstel, saving me circa £250. Renewal fee already paid for itself.

    MrsH 4 posts

    Has anyone actually managed to renew Ambassador recently. ? I have a few big IC trips coming up , and decided it’s probably worth it for me . The on-line functionality isn’t working , and after 40mins on the phone to the helpline , and speaking to 4 different guys, I’ve still not renewed. The asked me to call back tomorrow . Gave me 5K points for my trouble . Anyone else having issues?

    NorthernLass 7,573 posts

    Apparently you sometimes get extra benefits if you renew at a hotel – though presumably not the one you’re using the free night at!

    phantomchickenz 319 posts

    @MrsH – definitely reach out to the hotel your next stay is booked at, and ask what they can offer to tempt you to renew through them.

    pdwtrip 2 posts

    Have let mine lapse as mainly Marriott stays recently. Will be staying in November at IHG properties.
    Question if I book those stays now but do not renew until some months later will my benefits still apply to bookings made before I have joined the program?
    Any thoughts.

    NorthernLass 7,573 posts

    Yes – as long as you are a member at the time of your stay you will get all the benefits. Remember Ambassador benefits only apply at ICs though.

    phantomchickenz 319 posts

    Yes – as long as you are a member at the time of your stay you will get all the benefits. Remember Ambassador benefits only apply at ICs though.

    Except of course the complimentary Platinum status with One Rewards

    NorthernLass 7,573 posts

    Yes but I never rated that apart from the hit and miss drinks voucher! Hopefully at least Emyr will be happy when OH and I lose Diamond at the end of the year as we’re now putting all our cash bookings through him again for the breakfasts and other benefits 😂

    slidey 291 posts

    Is the diamond extension benefit definitely 100% gone now?

    Better get my free creation nights used while it still comes with breakfast lol

    NorthernLass 7,573 posts

    According to reports here and elsewhere, yes. I think the preferred strategy now is to do 40 nights for the lounge pass. Or just stay at HIEX/Staybridge Suites!

    TGLoyalty 526 posts

    Yes but I never rated that apart from the hit and miss drinks voucher! Hopefully at least Emyr will be happy when OH and I lose Diamond at the end of the year as we’re now putting all our cash bookings through him again for the breakfasts and other benefits 😂

    Always worth check FHR and Hotel Collection too.

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