My new Platinum Priority Club.. err.. IHG Rewards Club credential have arrived! Yeah?

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Delta I know. I am learning more and more about SPG and how it works. So many have talked about the SPG Platinum Challenge that I have checked it out. But first my IHG Platinum since I have “truly arrived” (really?)!

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I like IHG. I like Crown Plaza hotels. I even like Holiday Inn and Express hotels. Intercontinental are always nice, but it irritates me the dual program thing they have going on with the Ambassador for $200 more (no thanks)!

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I am not sure I am impressed with the new cards (then again the old ones were not that great either). There is no bar code or magnetic strip so the cards are just “bling-ish”.

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The perks of being Platinum with IHG are hit and miss as most know. It is also so easy to get their top status, it just take getting a Chase PC IHG card & you can pick up 80k points with the Chase IHG card (not my link and at the bottom of the list of cards)!

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“Where are we headed next?” you ask me? Why back to SPG since I can rely on them much more to extend elite benefits across ALL their products consistently and on points or non-points stays. I have my SPG Business card and I am waiting for my next round of cards next month to get the SPG Personal card to get 2 more stay credit (you can get a total of 4 stay credits or 10 nights total per year if you hold both personal and business cards).

What do you think, is IHG Platinum status worth anything to you? – René

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12 comments

  1. Can you use the IHG Plat to match status with another brand thus getting some benefit from it?

  2. @GetToThePoints – Maybe. Some match others but not IHG (my guess since it is so easy to get) but worth a shot. I would look at THIS post on InsideFlyer for more info what you can try to do.

  3. I did a Hyatt status match last year and used my proof of status at Hilton/Marriott/IHG as proof, so I don’t know if they specifically would have taken just IHG. Easiest thing to do is simply email the hotel program’s customer service and ask what they will accept for a status match.

    As for IHG, if you’re in the points game exclusively for high end properties and being treated as someone with status then it is definitely not in the conversation, but it is actually a great program for earning tons of points quickly (so many stackable promotions it is difficult to keep track and earning 5-7k points/night at even a Holiday Inn Express) and because there are properties in almost every single location you can almost always find a way to stay for a free night in a random small town while passing through or for 5 nights in Sydney, Australia at multiple well placed locations. That’s why I like to stay diversified and try to always have points available in IHG (I was lucky to burn a ton of points before the devaluation since most hotels I used went up)…

    There is also the added benefit of receiving 10% of your redeemed points back by having the credit card – considering I burned 400,000 points last year it was nice to see 40k come back to me. Then there is the hit or miss roulette game of the point breaks list, which is clearly the best value in the hotel game at 5,000/points a night… of course there may be a ton of airport hotels only at times, but over the years I’ve taken advantage of multiple hotels on that list including a few intercontinental stays for 5 nights for a total of 35,000 points when the daily rate was close to $300.

    I guess it comes down to your budget as well. If your company has you stick to hotels in the $125 range then Hampton Inn/Hilton Garden Inn and Holiday Inn Express/Holiday Inn are in your wheel house. If you are on the $150-$200+ range then the only reason to stick with IHG is if you enjoy Intercontinentals, which I personally don’t enjoy at all. I’ll take a newer Crowne Plaza or even nice Staybridge Suites over many IC properties just for the ease of coming and going, but then I’m not in the game for being treated special – I’m in it for free travel around the world and convenient options.

  4. Typically my Platinum status is good for a bottle of water. I’ll still give them a good chunk of my spend mostly because as Matt S pointed out it’s a nice match for the $125 range, and there are several of the IHG properties close to several of my clients. Sometimes we have budgets we have to meet and good old Priority Club er… IHG fills the need.

  5. HGI is much nicer than HI. Breakfast is very high quality and free for elites. All HGI properties are smoke-free.

    You can easily earn more than 5000 Hhonors points per stay too. My recent one-night stay of $140 at a Hilton earn me:

    base 1400
    triple points promo: 2800
    diamond bonus: 700
    diamond my way: 1000
    double-dipping on Virgin Atlantic: 1000 miles.
    1000 Virgin miles convert into 2000 HHonors points

    total: 7900.

  6. The $49 fee for a free night and platinum status w the cc are definitely worth it – even if you only spend the one night in an IHG hotel (hopefully at least 2 nights if your spouse has a card). Also realistically when traveling with the family, especially if just a night, holiday inn express provides a great inexpensive but clean alternative for when you don’t want to use points.

  7. I’ve been doing Hilton properties lately because along with the double/triple point promotion and my diamond bonus, I have been able to book the 2x point rate package at every hampton/Hilton garden/embassy/Hilton that I have staid at for as little as $5-14 more per night, easily in my budget. I do want to focus in boosting my IHG balance this fall though since I burned so many recently. I’ll gladly take the 10,000 point redemption rate at out of the way Holiday Inn Express properties for one quick night than the 20-30k for Hiltons in the same area.

  8. I agree with boilers, just get the credit card to obtain Platinum status. It gives you the chance to be upgraded to a better room and the $49 annual fee can easily be more than recovered with the annual free night certificate. In my experience, Platinum status carries a little more weight outside of the US, but YMMV. There is no real downside, in my opinion – better having a chance than no chance at all.

  9. I started my SPG Platinum challenge on July 1 and have 6 nights done and will stay 6 nights the first week of August and 6 nights the last week of Aug. that will complete the 18 nights I need for the Challenge.

    No besides the crossover benefits I have been upgraded each of the past nights to a suite and I do expect that the remaining nights in Aug I will get the upgrade as the Hotel is going out of its way to make and keep me and my business happy.

    This is what its all about and I for one am very happy with the SPG folks so far.

    Edward

  10. I have IHG Platinum from the credit card and while I agree benefits such as lounge access/free breakfast aren’t their strongsuit, getting bonus points is nice and getting a welcome gift and upgrades is always nice. Would love to see them honor benefits consistently on rewards stays (yet to use one but from what I hear).

    Anyway my two and only recent experience as a Platinum were as follows:

    One night at Hotel Indigo Tower Hill (London) on a paid stay I received an upgrade to the executive room with a nice king bed. The room was very large and gorgeous. As a welcome amenity I received two glasses of wine from the bar.

    One night at Crowne Plaza Bruges where I received an upgrade to a suite on a paid stay for a non suite room. It wasn’t needed given the short stay but the room was massive. Also there was a box of Belgian chocolates waiting in the room on arrival. Not the greatest but it was a nice gesture.

    Now if only they’d offer complimentary breakfast and it’d be a pretty great elite status.

  11. For a chain that has hotels almost anywhere, it’s helpful. It came in handy last Thursday when I needed a hotel last minute in Asheville. I’ve found that the service you get depends on the hotel. I actually got an upgrade at a points break room I was staying at since it was relatively empty and the manager was friendly. I also got an upgrade to a really nice suite with a lake view at the Hotel Indigo in Chicago with a paid stay. Some properties thank me profusely for being a platinum member and others don’t mention anything but just hand me a bottle of water. For $49/year with a free night, I’ll take it.

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