The One Reason You Should Get The IHG Rewards Club Credit Card

Filed Under: Chase, Credit Cards
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The annual fee on the IHG Rewards Club Select Credit Card is waived for the first year, and is $49 per year thereafter.

The sign-up bonus is available to those who don’t currently have this card, and haven’t received the cardmember bonus on this card in the past 24 months.

The IHG Rewards Club Select Credit Card offers the following return on spend:

  • 5x points per dollar spent at IHG properties
  • 2x points per dollar spent at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants
  • 1x point per dollar spent on all other purchases

I have this card, and you should too. The sign-up bonus  in and of itself isn’t the reason I’d get this card. Instead it’s the perks of the card which make it more than worthwhile, in my opinion.

The three most valuable perks of the card are that it offers IHG Platinum status for as long as you have the card, a 10% rebate on your points redemptions (up to 100,000 points of refunds per year), and an annual free night certificate.

In this post I want to focus exclusively on the annual free night certificate, which is the reason you should get this card.

IHG annual free night certificate

The annual free night certificate is valid at any IHG property in the world. Top IHG hotels cost 60,000 points per night, which is potentially how much value you can get out of a free night certificate. Availability using these certificates is fantastic, and you can redeem them as long as there’s points availability at a hotel.

I’m not usually an IHG guy, but they have 4,800+ properties around the world, so you’ll almost certainly find a great use with this benefit.

For example, I just recently redeemed my free night certificate at the InterContinental London at The O2, prior to seeing an Adele concert.

InterContinental London The O2

The rate would have been 345GBP (~$500) for the one night stay, but essentially I was instead paying ~$49 out of pocket for that night.


I just recently paid my annual fee on the card, and now I have another certificate that I have a year to use.

There are lots of options for where to redeem these certificates…


I can’t imagine why anyone wouldn’t be getting value out of that perk, or value it at more than $49.

Bottom line

The IHG Rewards Club Select Credit Card is one of those cards you’ll want to hold on to for years.

Between the free night certificate, 10% rebate on points redemptions, and Platinum status, this is one of the most rewarding hotel credit cards out there. Also keep in mind that the annual fee is waived the first year, and a low $49 per year after that (I don’t know of any premium hotel credit cards with a lower annual fee than that).

To those of you who have the IHG credit card, what have you redeemed your annual free night certificate for?

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Regarding Comments: The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.


  1. While this sounds great, most people, including myself, almost never stay just one night at a hotel property, other than airport hotels. And while the initial bonus would provide enough points for a second night at their top properties, that would be a one time thing. Ben, on the other hand, often just flies to a city for one night to review a flight, so, what works for him doesn’t necessarily work for the rest of us.

  2. @stuart even if you use it for an airport hotel you are gonna get at least double the value out of that $49. People go into a city for a ball game for one night or just a night out all of the time. You will always get value with this. Unlike the hyatt one where it is capped and you may be closer to breaking even….this is always a good deal.

  3. Can you talk of the reasons to get or not get the Korean Skypass card and why the bloggers don’t talk about it?

  4. I love this card …..I have not used my free night yet. My hubby also got 2 free nights for doing one of the promo’s. I am still new to this and am currently spire elite but could you explain exactly whats this means……a 10% rebate on your points redemptions (up to 100,000 points of refunds per year), ?? I am a little confused and still trying to learn all this. We plan on using our free nights in London this year for my 50th to go see a football( soccer) game, so excited !!

  5. My wife and I got this card at the same time. So every year we’ll spoil ourselves for the weekend at an Intercontinental. Well worth the AF on both our cards.

  6. I have used 3 free nights so far on three continents. The first year i used my free night for the Holiday inn Gare de Lyon Bastille in Paris, France. This hotel was centrally located to public transportation and provided a nice launching point to see Paris. The second year I had the certificate I stayed at the Intercontinental Clement Monterey which was an amazing hotel. I was attending a friend’s wedding and stayed here for several nights. What an amazing property. This year, I am using my free night at the Intercontinental in Tokyo, Japan.

    I have found the free night to be a great perk and as a Citi Prestige Cardholder it is nice to be able to use this for one night and then stay 4 additional nights using the 4th night free through the Citi Prestige program so basically 2 free nights on a 5 night stay.

  7. Does Chase 5/24 already kick in for the co-branded cards yet, If yeah , i’d stay away from them like its the Plauge

  8. I have a trip to the UK coming at the end of the month (flight booked when BA had the business class sale last year). My final night of the trip will be back in London or might visit a friend for a night in Paris. So I’ll be using my free night certificate at either the Intercontinental Park Lane or Intercontinental Le Grand. Not a bad redemption!

  9. Another way to use this (for someone saying no one goes anywhere for one night), aside from people combining it with longer stays, is to build a long layover (as close to the 24 hours as possible) and use this free night to explore that city.

    I did this on my way home from Abu Dhabi and used this at Intercontinental Times Square.

  10. I’m sure this is a deeply stupid question, but… how do I use my free night? I’ve had the card for a month, completed the minimum spend, the first statement has closed, etc. So… where’s my free night? What am I supposed to do?

  11. Does the annual free night have to be utilized within 1 calendar year? I don’t presume you can collect a couple and add them together for a single stay.

  12. @Rose Your free night is after your first year is done and you are due to pay the annual fee. So for meeting the minimum required spend, you will get the bonus points, 70k IHG ponts but the ‘free night’ that this article is about comes in 11 months when you have to pay the $49 annual fee.

  13. Rose- you gotta call- no on-line redemption, though not a stupid question.

    Kj- the rebate is on nights you redeem on points. While availability is good on the free nights, book your rooms now for your 50th- you can cancel if your plans change.

    I love the free night benefit, and since both my spouse and I have cards, we get a weekend away from the kids once a year. Last year Intercontinental Bangkok, year before Intercontinental Bali, 2 years ago, Hotel Carlton in Nice (one night, two rooms, during a one week vacation)… This year, intercontinental Danang.

    I’ve had the card for 6 years now, so it also contributing to my overall credit card aging. Of course, since so many bloggers are touting the benefits, I expect the price to go up soon…

  14. @Eric, yes your free night will have wording in the terms and conditions like this. “Chase Anniversary Free Night is valid at hotels in the IHG® Rewards Club Family of Brands and must be redeemed, and stay must be completed, within 12 months from date of issue. Anniversary Free Night is valid for one standard room night rate and applicable taxes only” So yes, you have to book and stay within the expiration date.

  15. @Mike – Yes, I booked a Bella Suite at the Palazzo in Vegas for 1 night late next month with my annual free night.

  16. Using the IHG card, my wife and I stayed in Germany, Paris, or Amsterdam (2 out of the 3 were free) for our honeymoon for during August 2015. That is, we purchased a few nights in one (can’t remember which one), and qualified to get the points in order to use them to stay in the other two countries for free. All were great hotels. Be sure to check out their specials, too! One additional night was in the Place Vendome (Hyatt), which their card also offers a free night for a $75 annual fee. Those are our only hotel cards, both are awesome.

  17. I just used my points for a stay and I have the credit card. When do I get the 10% back in points?

  18. Often when you are making a booking at an airline or hotel site, they offer you the chance to open a card right then and use it to pay for that booking. Does anybody know if that might be a way around the chase 5/24 to get this card?

  19. I have an upcoming stay at IC Fiji. One night was sold out, so I used Spire Guarantee to book a room for 3x the typical cost, although it is a best flexible rate. Do you think I can use the Chase Free Night for this rate?

  20. I have this card and I have never gotten a free night.
    I called them and said I no longer wanted to pay the fee for a card that wasn’t doing anything for me, I’ve never been given my points for recent hotel stats and am just done asking .
    They started telling me how wonderful the card was. I said if it’s so great, why am I getting rid of it?

  21. Where is the 80k link? I am on a 60k after $1k. I emailed them mutiple times and asked them to match 60k and $50 I had found, or 80k some had mentioned. They finally said yesterday I could have 80k with $2k spend. So I’m curious if that matches the new promotion.

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