IHG Rewards Program Changes Coming April 2022

IHG Rewards Program Changes Coming April 2022

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Update: See this post for the full details of the new IHG One Rewards program.

In mid-January 2022 we learned that IHG Rewards will be making some changes to its loyalty program, and at the time a sneak peek of the changes was published. Initially this full refresh was planned for March 2022, though we recently learned that these changes would be delayed for some amount of time. We now have a better sense of when to expect these changes.

New IHG Rewards status tiers will go live the week of April 11, 2022, and at some point in April we should learn more details about the program’s new perks. This is separate from the IHG Rewards credit card changes, which went live as of March 24, 2022. Let’s recap what we know so far about the new program.

Upcoming IHG Rewards program changes

There aren’t many details yet, but it’s being promised that the redesigned IHG Rewards program will be a “best-in-class” program “that’s centered around YOU.” So far we’ve only learned details about the new elite program, which I’ll cover below.

Otherwise we’re just told to be patient:

Stay tuned for the official launch of the new IHG Rewards program in a few months. You’ll hear more about our new benefits and all the updated ways to earn and redeem. And when it comes to picking perks, the choice is all yours.

Get ready for a loyalty program that rewards you for being you.

It’s interesting that there’s a reference to being able to choose perks, so it sounds like maybe members will be able to select the benefits that matter most to them.

IHG Rewards introducing new elite tiers

IHG Rewards elite tiers will be changed as of the week of April 11, 2022:

We’ve redesigned our tiers and earning structure so that you can earn more points and have more ways to use them than ever before. New tiers = more rewards.

With the new program, IHG will have four elite tiers:

  • Silver Elite will require 10 qualifying nights, and will offer a 20% points bonus
  • Gold Elite will require 20 qualifying nights or 40,000 qualifying points, and will offer a 40% points bonus
  • Platinum Elite will require 40 qualifying nights or 60,000 qualifying points, and will offer a 60% points bonus
  • Diamond Elite will require 70 qualifying nights or 120,000 qualifying points, and will offer a 100% points bonus

What’s changing here?

  • IHG Rewards is going from having three elite tiers to having four elite tiers
  • Spire Elite is being rebranded as Diamond Elite status
  • Essentially Silver Elite will have similar requirements to the former Gold Elite, and a new middle elite tier is being added
  • On the plus side, the IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card (review) offers Platinum Elite status, and that will continue to be the case, so the points bonus will be increasing from 50% to 60%

While we know the changes to elite qualification and bonus points, we don’t yet know what to expect in terms of changes to elite benefits.

My take on IHG Rewards program changes

We don’t know a whole lot yet about what changes are coming to the IHG Rewards program, other than the names and requirements for new elite tiers, plus a promise that the new program will be “best-in-class.” If that’s actually going to be the case, IHG has a lot of work to do:

  • IHG Rewards perks are woefully uncompetitive, given the lack of a concrete upgrade benefit, complimentary breakfast, late check-out, etc.
  • IHG Rewards is also rather complicated, given that there’s the separate Ambassador guest recognition program for some premium brands, including InterContinental, Kimpton, Six Senses, etc.
  • I am generally hopeful about these changes, based on the improvements we know are coming to IHG Rewards credit cards

If IHG Rewards wants to materially improve the program, it needs to be significantly more rewarding, and also simpler. I have my serious doubts about things changing for the better.

Bottom line

IHG Rewards is making loyalty program changes soon. We can expect new elite tiers to go live as of the week of April 11, 2022, and we should learn about all the program changes as of some point in April.

While details are limited, we do know that IHG will have four elite tiers, with new requirements and some rebranding. It’s otherwise too early to know what to expect, though the program has a long way to go if it wants to be competitive with Hilton Honors, Marriott Bonvoy, and World of Hyatt.

What are you predicting for these IHG Rewards program changes?

Conversations (56)
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  1. Irritated Traveler Guest

    Absolutely embarrassing by IHG. I was inside 2k points to make Spire Elite, then they move the goalpost on the highest tier by tens of thousands of points. I stay about 10-12 nights a month at IHG. Will seriously be reconsidering that.

  2. Bruce Amon Guest

    sounds like I will be cancelling my Priority club credit card, as the points are no longer used for elite status.
    Also, moving the top tier to 120000 points makes it much more difficult to obtain.
    Time for a new hotel chain.

  3. Pahanin Guest

    Stayed at the Venetian in Vegas and it was the best sleep and best hotel I’ve stayed at in the mainland US. No breakfast but who cares if the sleep was nice. Will definitely stay there again.

  4. Merck Guest

    Here’s a perk I’d love to see… ability to use more points to buy a Rewards Night Upgrade. I like to spend Rewards Nights on family vacations, but we always get a small, shitty room on rewards.

  5. Sanket Guest

    Platinum comparison
    2019 year 50% bonus
    40000 points or 40 nights
    Vs.
    New IHG rewards 2022
    60000 points or 40 nights
    60% bonus

    Are the IHG points devalued 2019 40K = 2022 60K.

    No cumulative advantage of year on year points like a million miler in the airline system which gives gold status for life

  6. Dean Guest

    Look to see if the tier’s to receive more rewards have anything to do with a carbon use criteria. Social scoring. This has to be totally rejected by customers. Camel nose under the tent.

  7. Ollie Guest

    Does anyone know if the Chase IHG Premier credit card changes are delayed too or will the changes including the annual fee increase to $99 happen on 3/24?

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Ollie -- They're still happening March 24.

  8. Chill Guest

    I’ve been a Spire Member for 4-5 years and the response of hotels is always hit and miss. South East Asia by far the best but a recent experience at Crowne Plaza Terrigal (Australia) was outstanding (suite upgrade, free parking, etc.). IHG utilized many of their hotels as Covid Hotels during the pandemic here which meant several of the hotels I would normally stay in were not available (e.g. their Gold Coast Hotels, Sydney IC,...

    I’ve been a Spire Member for 4-5 years and the response of hotels is always hit and miss. South East Asia by far the best but a recent experience at Crowne Plaza Terrigal (Australia) was outstanding (suite upgrade, free parking, etc.). IHG utilized many of their hotels as Covid Hotels during the pandemic here which meant several of the hotels I would normally stay in were not available (e.g. their Gold Coast Hotels, Sydney IC, Cairns Holiday Inn, Melbourne IC). This pushes me to Hilton which I am now a Gold Member of. The experience has been far superior than Spire (suite upgrades, included breakfast). It’s unlikely I’ll chase IHG status any longer.

    1. Sebastian Guest

      I agree. Same here. More than 5 years in and the program is a dud! If Marriott had more hotels ( in my area of travel) I would stay with them more.

  9. Dave Dave Guest

    First of all, I stopped doing anything with IHG because they block out more rewards rooms than any other property in decent cities. I still hold a good-sized IHG point balance and on a recent trip to London, about 25 hotels were available for paid purchase but only 2 hotels, located outside of the fun parts of the city had reward redemption as an option! Very similar experiences each time I want to book a...

    First of all, I stopped doing anything with IHG because they block out more rewards rooms than any other property in decent cities. I still hold a good-sized IHG point balance and on a recent trip to London, about 25 hotels were available for paid purchase but only 2 hotels, located outside of the fun parts of the city had reward redemption as an option! Very similar experiences each time I want to book a room in a decent city. Also ... room upgrades seem impossible to get at IHG.
    Second, I am very upset about this change because it will likely drive a big portion of the few remaining IHG Reward users to Bonvoy, which means more competition for for upgrades/reward redemption at Bonvoy properties. The redemption rates are way harsher at Bonvoy but rarely are there blacked out redemption properties unless they truly have no basic-level rooms available at all. IHG truly does not understand how important rewards programs are at capturing repeat customers and never really has.

  10. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

    In other words, the biggest IHG owner-operators pushed back and said no. IHG doesn’t want to lose the properties to Wyndham or Accor, so it’s delaying changes until it can sort things out.

  11. Stanley C Gold

    What!!! Not surprised that a delay occurred, but it was good on the part of IHG at all. I had to put in a lot to re-qualify for Spire status before March of 2022. As they advertised before, you can have Spire status at the reduced points of 55,000 before the new program starts during March 2022. Not cool, IHG.

    1. Merck Guest

      But there’s not going to be a Spire level in new program, so what would requalifying for Spire by a deadline do? Today is 4/5 and I’m at 48,950. Is it worth my trying to get to 55k in the next week or so?

  12. Mark Guest

    This is totally ridiculous. Especially since the requirements will be dramatically higher and this is not yet discloed in the IHG App. My account says I have already 34 nights this year and need 21 more to get Spire Elite. Means I would need 55 in total. This will be changed to 70 in April. What IHG is doing is fraud! And making the tiers harder to reach without announcing the new benefits is really insane. Shame in IHG!

  13. Eskimo Guest

    Anyone here consider transferring UR to earn Spire before the change take effect?

    Not the best use of UR but the new Diamond might actually be better consider, that it now requires 120k vs 75k.

    With all the promos, it never took more than 30-40 nights to reach Spire on points.

  14. Chuck Guest

    They offer very little anyway so why bother. I’m going to stay with Hilton and switch to Marriott program. At least glad to hear this early on. Spire elite since it started but cancelled two IHG reservations this month and rebooked with Marriott and will stay on that course. Go ahead and make it more complicated and give your customers less.
    EVER HAVE AN IHG PROPERTY DONE ANYTHINF FOR U FOR BEING TOO TEIR? They don’t even recognize u at the front desk anymore

    1. Sebastian Guest

      That's why I'm going to use my Marriott account more. The greeting has stopped. Sloppy service. I went to a property in New Jersey there was blood in the bath.

  15. Heath Guest

    I have over 300 nights with IHG if not more. However, I have gone back to using other hotel brands due to the lack of Lifetime Status.

  16. Robert Guest

    I'm hoping (read: praying) that IHG finally introduce lifetime status, especially if they're raising the bar for Diamond qualification.

  17. iamhere Guest

    Those who complain about other programs should think again. Look at the levels involved here. There are many more levels than at Marriott. And at least at platinum status you can get some decent benefits at most brands such as lounge access, etc. It is also much easier to build nights and all nights count no matter how they were earned.

    1. Andy Guest

      Agree. Both Hilton and Marriott offer more and better benefits than IHG. I've been IHG Gold for many years, but never quite got what the advantage was. A few years ago, there was free internet, yes, but that became standard in most hotels, so no longer a frill ... But except for Interconti their brands are all in the lower territory ...

  18. Jon B in SF Guest

    My 2021 experience with IHG Ambassador is that it is a sham. My expectation when I paid $200 was that I would at least recover it on the 2nd night free. What may be buried somewhere in the fine print is that the booking must be at the "Ambassador rate” that is significantly higher than best available rate for the stay. For all the possible uses I looked at, the free night amounted to about...

    My 2021 experience with IHG Ambassador is that it is a sham. My expectation when I paid $200 was that I would at least recover it on the 2nd night free. What may be buried somewhere in the fine print is that the booking must be at the "Ambassador rate” that is significantly higher than best available rate for the stay. For all the possible uses I looked at, the free night amounted to about 50% off the second night. They also complicate it as discount is not applied until you are at the property so you may have to argue with the hotel at checkout.

    I ended up not using it as I prefer to stay somewhere where my status gives me some benefit like lounge and breakfast.

    What did I get for my $200? On a two night Chase Free night award stay at the Intercontinental Time Square the restaurant was closed due to Covid so I got $20 bucks a night off the rooms exorbitant mini bar and snack food. So, for $200 I got: two boxes of M&M’s and two cookies. Hotel charged me anyway so had to contact their accounting department to get charge reversed.

    I would be curious to learn if the benefit is better in Europe stays.

    1. Timo Gold

      Agreed! Ambassador is good for late check-out and a $10 F&B credit...that's about it. The only reason I got the IHG credit card is for places like Singapore that prefer MasterCard instead of Visa. I do buy points when offered a huge bonus and usually use them at Kimpton which have some nice properties.

    2. Pam Guest

      One advantage I see over other programs is you can book into a higher grade room with your Amb stay, Premier Suites even, & have it taken off the 2nd night as well. So if you ensure a good room in advance, you can easily make up the $200+. And if you still have a leftover cert from the previous membership year, thst stay can be used towards the 2-nt requirement for this year +...

      One advantage I see over other programs is you can book into a higher grade room with your Amb stay, Premier Suites even, & have it taken off the 2nd night as well. So if you ensure a good room in advance, you can easily make up the $200+. And if you still have a leftover cert from the previous membership year, thst stay can be used towards the 2-nt requirement for this year + 20k points earned + another free night.

      I have found it more valuable to book the free nights at Kimptons rather than ICs since IC room rates can run so much higher & Kimptons don’t have to be booked on a weekend when rates can be higher, I hope IHG continue to allow redemptions into Kimptons past year end (though right now not).

  19. Jack Guest

    Do you think Ambassadors will keep Platinium Status at IHG or will be downgraded to Gold Status?

    1. KahunnaTravel Guest

      Well, just yesterday I received a promotional email offer from IHG to enroll in the Ambassador program. Cost was 40K points or $200USD. Per the terms - "Join now through 31 March 2022 and stay two nights with InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton® Hotels & Restaurants, or Regent™ Hotels & Resorts by 30 April 2022 and receive 20,000 bonus points." Digging deeper into the fine print, a qualifying night was a booking which incurred at...

      Well, just yesterday I received a promotional email offer from IHG to enroll in the Ambassador program. Cost was 40K points or $200USD. Per the terms - "Join now through 31 March 2022 and stay two nights with InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton® Hotels & Restaurants, or Regent™ Hotels & Resorts by 30 April 2022 and receive 20,000 bonus points." Digging deeper into the fine print, a qualifying night was a booking which incurred at least $30 in charges. Among the perks that come with Ambassador status was the normal free weekend night voucher good at IC properties and "participating" Kimpton and Regent properties. Also the other benefits included Platinum status, guaranteed room upgrade, 4PM late check-out, and $20 F/B per stay in IC properties and "participating" Kimpton and Regent properties. No sense what locations are participating and which are not. So if Platinum doesn't hang around for card holders, it appears that it will for Ambassador.

      I used to have Ambassador status way back in the day, and have been giving some thought to taking this offer up given that I have about 960K IHG points not doing anything right now and then using some the credit card nights to complete the 2 night requirements by the offer deadline. Between my wife and myself, we get 4 vouchers each year and still have 3 in the bank good through the end of this year.

  20. DCS Guest

    Hilton has permanently eliminated free breakfast for elites and even daily housekeeping.

    - FNT Delta Diamond

    That seems like important news. Did I miss the official announcement?

    1. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

      Permanent was probably the wrong choice of words, but what was said to be a temporary F&B credit in lieu of breakfast has been extended into 2022. It's difficult to see it coming back. As for housekeeping, the Hilton CEO has made it quite clear that daily housekeeping at all brands that previously provided it won't be back.

    2. DCS Guest

      Hilton is not saving or making any money giving out voucher instead of breakfast, whose perceived value to members is much higher than how much it costs Hilton to provide it.
      Free breakfast, like other non-monetary awards, including free nights on points, costs programs little to offer because the associated costs already figure in the incremental costs of doing business.

      Vouchers, on the other hand, are real money that is given to every member...

      Hilton is not saving or making any money giving out voucher instead of breakfast, whose perceived value to members is much higher than how much it costs Hilton to provide it.
      Free breakfast, like other non-monetary awards, including free nights on points, costs programs little to offer because the associated costs already figure in the incremental costs of doing business.

      Vouchers, on the other hand, are real money that is given to every member whether or not they skip breakfast. A $15 voucher is automatically foregone revenue by that amount.

      My prediction is that free breakfast will be restored in the US as soon as the current tight labor market loosens.

      In 2021, I did not stay at a singe Hilton property that did not provide housekeeping service, including those where I was told at check-in that I had to request it. Maybe because of my top elite status but, invariably, there was a knock on my door offering housekeeping, unless I'd hung the DND sign.

      These are not normal times, so let's avoid being drama queens or kings!

      G'day.

    3. Eskimo Guest

      LOL, just tried to use $15 voucher, an alleged foregone revenue!!!, for the 2nd time this week to reduce my bill.

      Well, 2 properties said the same thing. I can't reduce my room rate by $15 unless I use it to buy f&b at the property. So much for real money or foregone revenue.

      Now let's see if these 2 properties are saving more money with breakfast vs voucher. I just have to ask myself...

      LOL, just tried to use $15 voucher, an alleged foregone revenue!!!, for the 2nd time this week to reduce my bill.

      Well, 2 properties said the same thing. I can't reduce my room rate by $15 unless I use it to buy f&b at the property. So much for real money or foregone revenue.

      Now let's see if these 2 properties are saving more money with breakfast vs voucher. I just have to ask myself this question, after the $15 is consumed, do I still want to have something more?
      LOL, both fail the test. I would have eaten more. So I guess the property is saving money by spending less to feed me.
      I can't get $15 off my rates nor did I have enough breakfast.
      I say it's foregone breakfast not revenue with fake cash LOL.

      But sure, if someone begs the property to take more money and skips breakfast, the voucher is probably worth more to them than most of the people.

    4. DCS Guest

      To each their own. I have never had a stay during which I did not spend money on dining or beverages on a property. So, for me that is a given. Incidentals are money I would have spent whether or not I got free breakfast. The vouchers are, therefore, automatic and they the same as cash being given to me to offset my bill, whether or not I would have had breakfast. There is no...

      To each their own. I have never had a stay during which I did not spend money on dining or beverages on a property. So, for me that is a given. Incidentals are money I would have spent whether or not I got free breakfast. The vouchers are, therefore, automatic and they the same as cash being given to me to offset my bill, whether or not I would have had breakfast. There is no "reward leverage" when cash involved. Non-monetary rewards like breakfast are "reward leverage", but I am repeating myself.

      G'day.

    5. Eskimo Guest

      To each their own.

      Giving 'me' a voucher to redeem for something over priced is a "reward leverage".
      The cost to hotels for providing 'me' a $15 f&b is actually much lower than its perceived value of $15.

      To each their own, but 'I' am repeating myself.

    6. DCS Guest

      Like I said before, I have no time to waste on this. I am coming out ahead with vouchers and hope they continue.

      BTW, fixed your issues with HGW timeshares yet? That should concern you more than to continue pontificating on things you do not understand.

      G'day.

    7. Stanley Guest

      At least, free breakfast still applies outside of the US and in many cases hot breakfast like buffet style. It is much better than IHG providing breakfast for one out of two registered guests. What program out there in the hotel industry provides just one breakfast? Yet, at least it is not clear across the board. On paper, it says one breakfast and some cheap owners of IC stick to that like glue but the...

      At least, free breakfast still applies outside of the US and in many cases hot breakfast like buffet style. It is much better than IHG providing breakfast for one out of two registered guests. What program out there in the hotel industry provides just one breakfast? Yet, at least it is not clear across the board. On paper, it says one breakfast and some cheap owners of IC stick to that like glue but the generous IC owners will provide breakfast for two even on award stays. As for daily housekeeping, that is still the standard in the Asia Pacific properties.

  21. Creditian Guest

    IHG Rewards is competing with Wyndham/Best Western.

    Ambassador is competing with Hyatt/Marriott.

    1. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

      Intercontinental ambassador is NOT competing with Hyatt.

  22. ct Guest

    It's pretty crummy to make this change after the start of the year for the current year. I planned several stays in January and February aiming for Spire status in 2022 at 75K. Had I known the goalpost was shifting to be 60% higher, at 120K (with yet to be determined benefits), I might have chosen a different brand. They really need to put these changes into effect for 2023.

    1. Ethan Guest

      While sucks to be in your situation here, I think most people inherit their status from 2021 extension……

  23. Jerry Diamond

    What “class” is IHG in, exactly? Are they competing with Marriott, Hyatt, and Hilton, or do they compete with Choice, Wyndham, and Best Western. I think that distinction helps when they try to become “best in class.”

    1. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

      IHG is competing against Wyndham, Marriott and Hilton.

  24. Kiwi Guest

    Just so long as they don't mess with my Royal Ambassador/ Inner Circle benefits this year I'm good with whatever comes out.

  25. Brutus Guest

    More ways to earn? Another shopping portal. Yay.

  26. Christian Guest

    Call me skeptical but based on years of experience with IHG, I do NOT see this as something positive. I would like to be proven wrong but I think IHG is leading the race to the bottom and we will get some smoke and mirrors changes like the elite levels and possible new elite benefits which in the end won't amount to much but ultimately room award rates will go up. Again I am more...

    Call me skeptical but based on years of experience with IHG, I do NOT see this as something positive. I would like to be proven wrong but I think IHG is leading the race to the bottom and we will get some smoke and mirrors changes like the elite levels and possible new elite benefits which in the end won't amount to much but ultimately room award rates will go up. Again I am more than willing to be proven wrong but history has dictated that what sounds like an improvement will not be even if they put some great marketing spin on it.

    1. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

      I would not be surprised to see specific benefits defined by geography. IHG currently has benefits that only apply for China or Asia-Pacific. China is a priority market for IHG. Meanwhile, the Holiday Inn or Crowne Plaza in the United States is just a tired old legacy property in a legacy market. You could say that about other hotel brands. Full-service hotels are a thing of the past. All the owners and franchisees are building...

      I would not be surprised to see specific benefits defined by geography. IHG currently has benefits that only apply for China or Asia-Pacific. China is a priority market for IHG. Meanwhile, the Holiday Inn or Crowne Plaza in the United States is just a tired old legacy property in a legacy market. You could say that about other hotel brands. Full-service hotels are a thing of the past. All the owners and franchisees are building and opening limited-service properties. More revenue and lower costs.

  27. Bobby J Guest

    I actually think there may be a major realignment of benefits coming here. IHG, Hyatt, and Hilton all smell blood in the water thanks to Bonvoy’s rolling list of self-owns. If IHG redefines it’s program benefits - and that’s a big if - it could stand to win big given their very large and competitive footprint. I suspect Platinum status via card will be gone, and I suspect that points earning, upgrades, and a few...

    I actually think there may be a major realignment of benefits coming here. IHG, Hyatt, and Hilton all smell blood in the water thanks to Bonvoy’s rolling list of self-owns. If IHG redefines it’s program benefits - and that’s a big if - it could stand to win big given their very large and competitive footprint. I suspect Platinum status via card will be gone, and I suspect that points earning, upgrades, and a few other benefits might become more standardized. Wouldn’t be surprised if Kimpton and Ambassador statuses also get the ax.

    1. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

      Hilton has permanently eliminated free breakfast for elites and even daily housekeeping. So I’m sure that Hilton cares.

      I do, however, agree that a real breakfast benefit (defined as at least a buffet or a hot item plus coffee, juice, tip and tax) and club lounge access would be a huge improvement from worthless Hilton and increasingly worthless Marriott.

      But if you think Marriott customer service is bad wait until you try IHG.

    2. Bobby J Guest

      Oh I have no illusions about IHG’s customer non-service. Frankly speaking, none of the hotel chains get more than a C grade from me in that department, with Hyatt (of course) being best. That said, I have a hard time seeing how IHG could get worse here, so I have to imagine that something - anything - must be in the offing to entice customers to stay and maybe siphon off some of Bonvoy’s disillusioned.

    3. Stanley Guest

      If you had a chance to read the more in-depth details from their email, it says no changes to the Ambassador and Inner Circle programs.

  28. sharon Guest

    Wonder if those currently receiving Platinum status from their Chase credit card will drop down to Gold. My sense is yes, given the way IHG handled the free night certificates that expired 12/31/21.

    1. Stanley Guest

      According to Katie Genter from TPG, she stated that an IHG rep stated that those who get platinum status from the co-branded CC will continue to have it in the new program.

  29. T E Guest

    Do chase point transfers still count towards base points at IHG. Not sure if its worth ~55k UR points, but it would be easy to get top tier diamond for the next two years with a transfer, and who knows, maybe they'll make it a better program.

  30. jfhscott Guest

    (1) Platinum will get no breakfast - there is no way that a status level conferred by a sub $100 annual fee credit card gets a f/b benefit.

    (2) Diamond will get some f/b benefit. I just do not see these jackasses giving their program a hard look, holding it up against the competition, and concluding they simply cannot budge on this. The only reason I can think of their not doing so would be...

    (1) Platinum will get no breakfast - there is no way that a status level conferred by a sub $100 annual fee credit card gets a f/b benefit.

    (2) Diamond will get some f/b benefit. I just do not see these jackasses giving their program a hard look, holding it up against the competition, and concluding they simply cannot budge on this. The only reason I can think of their not doing so would be if their franchise contracts would give rise to a royal shellacking if such a requirement got imposed on franchisees.

    Otherwise, I think this can only be good news. Their current program is so uninspired that my useage has been limited to the CC nights and spending a tiny handful of points on a room I used for all of 8 hours. Given my use patterns, the program literally cannot get worse.

    1. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

      I almost always choose a Holiday Inn Express over a Holiday Inn. Many or most Holiday Inn Express properties are new or renovated. And, of course, I get free breakfast. Plus, the restaurant food at Holiday Inn tends to be inedible. I feel bad for the handful of good Holiday Inn owners because that brand is just awful. In places with both a Holiday Inn and a Holiday Inn Express, I have yet to find a Holiday Inn Express that wasn’t better than the Holiday Inn.

    2. Heath Guest

      You said it best. The brand is battered and worn out unless you are staying at an HI express. On the other hand a Crowne Plaza overseas is a nice, modern, clean, and up to date brand. But no breakfast and no lifetime status. I’ve moved on except an occasional stay at an HI express.

  31. FNT Delta Diamond Guest

    Launching new elite status tiers without any new benefits is just stupid. This is the kind of epic fail that is taught in case studies. IHG was my first hotel program back in 2002 when it was called Priority Club. I was an Intercontinental ambassador for years until I switched to Marriott around 2012-2013. The $250 for ambassador is probably worth it, but the program is a joke. I can’t justify staying at a hotel...

    Launching new elite status tiers without any new benefits is just stupid. This is the kind of epic fail that is taught in case studies. IHG was my first hotel program back in 2002 when it was called Priority Club. I was an Intercontinental ambassador for years until I switched to Marriott around 2012-2013. The $250 for ambassador is probably worth it, but the program is a joke. I can’t justify staying at a hotel that won’t give me free breakfast, especially when a Holiday Inn paid breakfast is generally worse and of cheaper quality than the free breakfast for all guests at the Holiday Inn Express. IHG needs to at the minimum offer breakfast and lounge access at its Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza Kimpton and Intercontinental properties. It can probably get away without these two benefits at resorts.

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jfhscott Guest

(1) Platinum will get no breakfast - there is no way that a status level conferred by a sub $100 annual fee credit card gets a f/b benefit. (2) Diamond will get some f/b benefit. I just do not see these jackasses giving their program a hard look, holding it up against the competition, and concluding they simply cannot budge on this. The only reason I can think of their not doing so would be if their franchise contracts would give rise to a royal shellacking if such a requirement got imposed on franchisees. Otherwise, I think this can only be good news. Their current program is so uninspired that my useage has been limited to the CC nights and spending a tiny handful of points on a room I used for all of 8 hours. Given my use patterns, the program literally cannot get worse.

1
Irritated Traveler Guest

Absolutely embarrassing by IHG. I was inside 2k points to make Spire Elite, then they move the goalpost on the highest tier by tens of thousands of points. I stay about 10-12 nights a month at IHG. Will seriously be reconsidering that.

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Bruce Amon Guest

sounds like I will be cancelling my Priority club credit card, as the points are no longer used for elite status. Also, moving the top tier to 120000 points makes it much more difficult to obtain. Time for a new hotel chain.

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