The One Credit Card I Want But Can’t Get (For Now)

Filed Under: Chase, Credit Cards
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I have a lot of credit cards — 25 at this point, to be exact — and for the most part I’m really happy with my credit card portfolio.

The six credit cards I’ve picked up recently

For a while there were a lot of credit cards that I really wanted, and I’ve made good progress on acquiring them in the past several months. Since October 2018 I’ve picked up six cards, all of which I’ve had my eye on for quite a while. I’ve applied for:

The one card I still want

Like I said, at this point I’m really happy with the cards I have, though there is one other card I really want but can’t get, and I’m jealous of those of you who can get it.

Specifically, I’m talking about the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card, which was introduced last year.

I have the IHG Rewards Club Select Credit Card, for which they stopped accepting applications about a year ago. While I could upgrade from the old card to the new card, you can actually have both cards, and there are benefits to doing so.

The old card that I have offers an anniversary free night certificate valid at any IHG hotel retailing for up to 40,000 points per night and a 10% refund on redeemed points, for a total of up to 100,000 refunded points per year.

The reason I want the $89 annual fee IHG Rewards Premier Card is because of how complementary the benefits are. This card offers:

  • An anniversary free night certificate valid at any IHG hotel retailing for up to 40,000 points per night
  • IHG Rewards Club Platinum status for as long as you have the card
  • A fourth night free on award redemptions, which can be used an unlimited number of times
  • A TSA Pre-Check or Global Entry fee credit once every four years

So by having both cards there are some great benefits I could stack. I could get two anniversary free night certificates every year, and I could also stack the 10% refund on redeemed points with the fourth night free on award redemptions.

In other words, if I made a four night booking for 25,000 points per night, I’d end up paying just 67,500 points (the fourth night would be free, and then I’d get 10% of the 75,000 points that I redeem back). That’s an excellent value.

The reason I haven’t been able to get this card is because the IHG Rewards Premier Card is subjected to the 5/24 limit, and I’m over that at the moment. So it’s a card I could get eventually, but not for now.

On top of that, through  May 1, 2019, the card has its best ever welcome bonus, of 120,000 IHG Rewards Club points, structured as follows:

  • 80,000 IHG Rewards Club points after spending $2,000 within the first three months
  • An additional 40,000 IHG Rewards Club points after spending $5,000 within the first six months (that’s an incremental $3,000 of spend)

So if you don’t have the IHG Rewards Premier Card but are eligible for it, I’d highly recommend applying.

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  1. @Lucky when does the 10% refund on IHG points post to your account? I have both IHG cards and recently made a 4 night booking. I received the 4th night free but not the 10% refund.

  2. FWIW, I have the old IHG card. I just used the free anniversary night award to book a night at the Kimpton Monaco Philadelphia which has a 55K points per night award level.

  3. Ben, when will we hear from you about the CNB Crystal Card? Frequent Miler and DOC have been all over it for years. Would love to see your analysis.

  4. @ Chris Parker — The 10% refund posts a few weeks after your actual stay at the latest, so it’s not something that posts when you book.

  5. IMO, the combination of having both the IHG select and the IHG Premier is underrated in the credit cards game. Paying just $138 per year to get 2 nights provide tremendous value to anyone who travels. Including the “4 nights free with points ” and “10% back with points” features of the two cards combine, it is definitely worth the annual fee of $138. My wife and I both have it. I will gladly pay $276 every year for 4 nights hotel stays of our vacation.

  6. Ben, we are in Germany for next 4-5 months. Will they fedex or ups the cards if requested after approval?

  7. I also just used our last free nights (2 nights) at IC Thalasso Bora Bora… can’t complain spending $98 for two nights in Bora Bora. I understand the card now limit the redemption to 40K, but after using it at IC Thalasso … every year after that is just bonuses.

  8. Don’t forget plat gives you a 50% bonus on cash stays, for a total 15pts/dollar. Using the credit card gives an additional 10pts/dollar for a total of 25pts/dollar. Valued at roughly .5cents/point that’s a 12.5% return.

    In addition, IHG regularly has great cashback offers through shopping portals. Right now there’s is one at 11% cash back on IHG stays. That’s a total of 23.5% return if used in conjunction with the card.

  9. I think the answer is “no” but can you use the free Chase cert night combined with the other nights on points to get the fourth night free?

  10. @PJ Yoo – No. It has to be all on points and you must have enough points for 4 nights to get the 4 nights free. For example, for a hotel room that cost 40k per night, you will need to have 160k points in your account to book the rooms. They will only charge you 120K but you still need to have 160K in your account to book the room for 120K. If you have both IHG select and IHG Premier, after your stay, 12K will be return to your account.

  11. @GoAmtrak I’ve already gotten $2100 value from the CNB card in <6 months. This one largely flies under the radar as they don’t provide commissions to bloggers.

    I also have another card that Lucky wants and can’t get: the J.P. Morgan Reserve card.

  12. @boraxo- what are the approval odds? And if I buy through the portal am I still earning moles from the flight if it’s say Alaska air?

  13. So Lucky would like to be more engaged with IHG and it’s reward program, including 4+ night stays, but because of the Chase 5/24 rule has only a keeper sock drawer card that doesn’t really drive business to IHG. Great rule Chase! Way to partner.

  14. You really have to be committed to IHG to want to have both cards IMHO. 40k for a night is fine, but most of nice hotels are 45k or higher. yeah, you can recoup your AF and then some, but I would place it farther down on one’s credit card wish list. I upgraded from old card to newer one for the 4th night free. That and the Platinum status do make that card a must have card.

    Also, word to the wise if you have an IHG property booked where the point value increased. If you change your reservation it will re-calculate based on current point value. IHG elite desk rectified for me. All I did was take one night – last night to be specific – off the reservation. They modified the whole reservation. I stated there was no need to modify as I wasn’t moving or shifting the dates. All that was required was to remove the last night at the point value it was booked at. They finally corrected.

  15. @Boraxo Nicely done. Ben writes about other non-commissionable cards, so I don’t understand why he’s not bothering to at least go for the SEO content in this case. Also it seems CNB would be super lucrative for him too.

  16. For “In other words, if I made a four night booking for 25,000 points per night, I’d end up paying just 67,500 points (the fourth night would be free, and then I’d get 10% of the 75,000 points that I redeem back). That’s an excellent value.” Shouldn’t you use that particular credit card to book? Which card would you use for this stay? Old or New? Which ever you use, you may not use the perk associated with the other one?

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