Buy IHG Points With a 100% Bonus, Just 0.5 Cents Each

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IHG just launched its latest points sale, offering a 100% bonus on point purchases now through November 27, 2020. This sale provides members the ability to buy IHG points for as little as 0.5 cents each. Members need to buy 30,000 points to get the optimal purchase rate. However, if you have a huge redemption to book, you can get up to 500,000 points (after the bonus) at this rate.

A Note on Buying IHG Points

In general, buying miles without a bonus is not a great idea. Loyalty programs typically sell miles at a much higher price than members can redeem them for. These sales can generate a lot of money for the program, but it's generally a poor value for the customer. However, promotions like this can shrink or eliminate that gap.

Additionally, there are two exceptions when buying miles can be a smart move. The first is when topping off your account to position for a specific redemption. The second is when the price to buy points for a redemption is cheaper than paying for the same product outright.

buy IHG points with a 100% bonus banner

IHG Buy Points Offer Details

  • This promotion is valid between 12:00 a.m. ET November 23, 2020 through 11:59 p.m. ET on November 27, 2020.
  • You can receive a 100% bonus when you purchase IHG points.
  • You'll receive the best purchase rate when buying at least 30,000 points.
  • To receive the 100% bonus, you must purchase a minimum of 30,000 points.
  • You can purchase a maximum of 250,000 IHG points for the term of this promotion. With the 100% bonus, this translates into 500,000 IHG points for $2,500, or 0.5 cents each.
  • It may take up to 72 hours for the points to post to your account.
  • Point purchases are not refundable.

Great IHG Redemption Options

IHG is a dark horse among the major hotel brands. For a lot of people, IHG makes you think of a generic Holiday Inn Express right off the highway. Yet in reality, there are a ton of fantastic IHG properties strewn across a substantial global footprint—many of which can offer a stellar value on point redemptions.

A reward night at IHG properties typically costs between 10,000–70,000 points, with a few exceptions. Depending on what the cash price is, you may be better off buying the points necessary instead.

InterContinental Porto – Palacio das Cardosas

New Year's Eve in Portugal

The Intercontinental in Porto is among the nicest hotels in the city, situated at the end of Praça da Liberdade, the main city square. This is where a lot of the city's celebrations are held each year, including the performances and fireworks on New Year's Eve. As expected, this view and convenience come at a cost.

For New Year's Eve, the cheapest room you can buy is €440, or around $476 per night. However, the same room on the same night only costs 50,000 points.

If you took advantage of the promotion with this stay in mind, you could buy all of the points required for $250, saving over $200 per night compared to the lowest cash price.

Overwater villa in Bora Bora

The crown jewel of the IHG Rewards program is the InterContinental Bora Bora Resort Thalasso Spa. As the only room type at this property is overwater villas, you can redeem your IHG Rewards points for an overwater villa. The rate (when you can find availability) is 70,000 IHG Rewards points per night:

As you can see in the small print in the screenshot above, the paid room rates are extraordinarily high. For the night where I found award availability, the base rate is US$988 after taxes and fees. However, if you bought the 70,000 IHG points with a 100% bonus, you'd only pay $350 for the night!

The huge caveat is that award availability can be extremely hard to find at this property. When award availability does open, it's usually only available for 1-2 nights at a time. So, you're going to need to pair this stay with others around Bora Bora to make a proper trip.

Spring in Fiji

The Intercontinental Fiji Golf Resort and Spa is one of our favorite IHG sweet spots for point redemptions. Cash rates are regularly north of $400 per night, meaning a four-night stay in March 2021 would cost 2,481 Fijian Dollars, or over US$1,160.

However, at only 40,000 points a night, the 160,000 points required would only cost $800, saving you over $350 off the cash rate.

If you hold the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card or IHG® Rewards Club Traveler Credit Card, this deal gets even sweeter. Thanks to the Fourth Reward Night Free when you redeem points for any stay of 4 or more nights, you'd only need 120,000 points total for this stay. Buying those points under this promotion costs $600, saving almost half off the cash price!

IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
Annual Fee$0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $89
Welcome Bonus Earn 140,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Earn 140,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Enjoy a Reward Night after each account anniversary year at eligible IHG hotels worldwide. Plus, enjoy a reward night when you redeem points for any stay of 4 or more nights
  • Earn up to 25 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants. Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Platinum Elite status as long as you remain a Premier card member
  • Global Entry or TSA Pre✔® Fee Credit of up to $100 every 4 years as reimbursement for the application fee charged to your card
  • IHG Rewards Club Bonus points are redeemable at hotels such as InterContinental®, Crowne Plaza®, Kimpton®, EVEN® Hotels, Indigo® Hotels & Holiday Inn®
  • Earn 25 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
  • 2X points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants
  • 1X point per $1 spent on all other purchases

The earning for spending at IHG hotels breaks down as follows:
  • Earn 10X points for being a IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Cardmember
  • Earn 5X points from IHG® with Platinum Elite Status, a benefit of having this card
  • Earn 10X points from IHG® for being an IHG® Rewards Club Member (Being a cardholder is not required to earn this bonus for participating in the IHG® loyalty program)

Maximizing Your IHG Points Purchase

IHG point purchases are processed by Points.com—not IHG directly—so they won't trigger any multiplier on cards with travel or hotel purchases as a bonus category. That being the case, your best options are to use the purchase to meet a minimum spending requirement, or to use a card optimized for everyday spending. Here are a few of our favorite options:

It's worth noting that one of the perks offered to cardholders of the IHG Rewards Premier Card is a 20% discount on the purchase of IHG Rewards points. However, this benefit can't be stacked with a buy points promotion. So, you’re better off sticking with one of the cards listed above.

IHG Buy Points History

We have compiled a partial list of the best former IHG buy miles promotions. As you can see, there have been plenty of former promotions that offered 100% bonus points. So, if you don't have an immediate use for IHG Rewards points, you may want to wait for the next promotion.

Promotion EndedMax BonusMin Cents Per Mile
11/27/2020100%0.5
11/13/202040% discount0.6
10/11/202075%0.57
08/14/2020100%0.5
06/20/2020100%0.5
05/01/201980%0.55
11/30/2018100%0.5
10/31/2018100%0.5
09/20/2018100%0.5
08/22/2018100%0.5
06/15/2018100%0.5
03/22/2018100%0.5
12/08/2017100%0.5
11/09/2017100%0.5
05/19/2017100%0.575
12/02/2016100%0.575
11/16/2016100%0.575
09/30/2016100%0.575

Bottom Line

This promotion falls short of the best price we've ever seen IHG sell points. Also, now might not be the best time to be planning hotel stays. However, if you have an immediate redemption in mind, it could be a great opportunity.

Are you buying IHG points with a 100% bonus?

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Comments

  • Avatar

    Have stayed at both IC Porto and IC Thalasso (on points), and both were fabulous.

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    Not a big surprise seeing this discount from time to time.
    I was expecting at least a 110% discount considering the Black Friday, the devaluation of IHG points and the pandemic situation.

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    I have not found a high end IHG property in the places I have been to. They are definitely more well known for their low end and mid range hotel properties. As usual, buyer beware on these point purchases.

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    Nice deal, and you’ve highlighted some nice properties! However, until the pandemic/vaccine situation is resolved, I’m having trouble even figuring out how to use the free nights I have at IHG and elsewhere.

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    This would be a great deal if they could only bring pointbreaks back!

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    Would buying the points with the IHG credit cards be a good move?

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    This is a great deal and one that I will be taking advantage of!

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    i will wait for better deals possibly next year. for now cash is the best i think

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    As much as I enjoy some IHG hotels (looking at you Intercontinental), I wouldn’t buy their points right now. Who knows how long they’ll be in business in the current economy? In August, IHG lost 103 properties since they didn’t pay millions of dollars to an investment company that operated those hotels under the IHG name. (Those hotels are being rebranded as Sonesta.)

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    At this moment in time it will take more than a 40% bonus to get me to spend my money buying hotel points! Hopefully next year we will see a 100% bonus offer!

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    ERIC C FERTIG says:

    I recommend people wait for the better point deals that will follow unless you really need the points now. As noted above, almost every month is a new deal.

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    It is interesting that the bonus offer is not exceptional when 2021 does not look particularly promising.

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    Pablo Quilis says:

    I don’t think it is the best promotion. I will wait for a 100% bonus

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    Attractive offer if I had hopes of traveling again in the near future 🙁

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    Hi! Can I buy IHG points from Argentina? How should I do? Thank you!

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    If you find the right hotel this might be a good money saver. But you gotta compare the price. I’m thinking about a good stay in Istanbul since US citizens n travel there right now.

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    Hard pass for the reasons explained in the article, plus it’s currently hard enough to figure out how to use my current free nights, at IHG and elsewhere, before they expire, since I’ve paused nonessential travel for the time being.

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    I can’t wait until COVID is over and we can travel without restrictions again. I just hope one of those 100% bonuses rolls around when I’m ready to travel so I can maximize savings. Until then I’ll just continue using my cards to earn points/miles and save them for the future.

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    No, I won’t be doing so at this time. No need for the points right now.

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    The future is still uncertain for travel and hospitality.

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    Pablo Quilis says:

    I used this kind of promotion in the past. However, I think we have to wait until the 100% bonus promotion will back.

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    I can second your recommendation of the Intercontinental Fiji. It’s a really spectacular property available at a great price. Staff was incredibly friendly too. My favorite IHG property, however, is the Intercontinental Da Nang. I’ve seen nights going for 30,000 points off-peak, which is an incredible bargain for what you get. I plan to visit once we get past this pandemic.

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    If an airline goes bankrupt, can the accumulated miles be transferred to another program of a partner airline? Or am I daydreaming?

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    Hotels are not playin this quarter! Great deal!

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    This offer appears to have expired, if you want to mark it accordingly.

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    TechieTravels says:

    Do bought miles count towards elite status? The bonus miles could move the needle on making buying elite status worth it. Although, even top-tier Spire is pretty worthless.

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    Where might those be Aimee ?

    Anyone else seeing some outsized bargains with points ? Where ?! Cheers.

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    “You’ll receive the best purchase rate when buying at least 26,000 points” – why not 25K?)

    • Avatar

      IHG uses a different base rate for purchases up to 10,000 points ($13.50 per 1,000) and 11,000 to 25,000 points ($11.50 per 1,000) than it does for purchases of 26,000+ ($10 per 1,000). That means you can buy 50,000 points (25,000 base + 25,000 bonus) for $287.50 or 52,000 points (26,000 base + 26,000 bonus) for $260.

  • Avatar

    This offer has been postponed. I am about to buy some IHG points. Now IHG is redeeming hotels based on low and peak seasons. I can find some very cost-effective places to travel.

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    standard offer for their sale, but if you play it right, a couple of hundred bucks for some of the nicest properties.

  • Avatar

    After all these repeated promos by IHG there is still someone buying points at the regular price?
    This is maybe also the reason why the value of the points has constantly decreased.

    • Avatar

      I suspect that only a few are buying points; why would people buy points when they are not traveling any time soon? People can read news and see the second wave is raging.

  • Avatar

    Pretty sweet deal
    But i’m passing

    I’m quite concerned that these points (and points and miles in general) will be devalued quite soon.
    So unless you plan on using these in the very near future(which I’m not planning on doing) buyer beware!

  • Avatar

    All the uncertainty surrounding the travel industry right now is making it super frustrating. It’s difficult to consider purchasing points when there’s no clear guidance on when things will open up again. I think a lot of people are in agreement that the risk is still too great at the moment.

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    Great redemption ideas in this post!!

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    Even with the low price to buy miles, I wouldn’t to buy points speculatively right now.

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    I always appreciate that IHG regularly offers 100% bonuses.

  • Avatar

    All point programs are trying to raise cash by selling points. However with dynamic pricing, you never know if you will be getting a good deal or not.

  • Avatar

    It is a very good promotion, the rate at which you are buying points in this promotion is excellent.

    Today with the Covid-19 all user loyalty programs, such as miles or other types of points or schemes, all hotels and airlines are promoting.

    IHG is one more trying to reactivate the tourism machinery with good promotions.

  • Avatar

    Not a huge fan of buying points and especially for using in Porto which is on of the cheapest European cities! I’m sure you could get a nice hotel room for closer to $100 in cash.

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    Great deal, second time in recent months they have offered this correct?

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    Not a bad deal… too bad I just stayed at IHG property before this was offered

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    Great info, scared to buy points at the moment thou…

  • Avatar
    Rassojunior says:

    The Dynamic Pricing IS a devaluation. It will grow.

    Also dynamic pricing kills all those New Years Eve bargains from IHG.

    I use IHG pts a lot for 4th free night and 10% rebate and love it avoids tax. But IHG pts are often for sale.

    • Avatar
      JT Genter says:

      Which property were you looking at for NYE? And yes, I agree that dynamic pricing isn’t good news for the future. But, for now, there are some incredible deals! My wife and I just booked an InterContinental in Australia for 16k per night for spring 2021!

      • Avatar
        tassojunior says:

        All IHG’s have traditionally had free nights available on New Years Eve for standard award rates, even Times Square. No more.

        It’s only been 2 weeks since the last 100% bonus sale, plus Pts+Cash is often on sale too for half price. IHG is pushing sales of points while having artificially low reward rates now. It’s a marketing push that benefits the company, but probably not the consumer. Hilton pts have dropped in value a lot and Radisson pts that once were worth almost a penny a point are down to about .25 cent now. That’s the competition.

        Bankruptcy doesn’t kill points nor does a company being bought or merged with another. Going out of business kills points. The classic was Delta letting Pan Am fold and then buying most parts of it to void union contracts, frequent flyer miles, etc. But almost all hotels are a franchise, especially IHG. There’s no real benefit to the “logo” going bankrupt.

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          I’m a bit confused. Are you not seeing IHG hotels available in Times Square for NYE? Because I still am! And there’s not even a minimum stay being required. If you weren’t seeing any availability, I’d recommend checking back now.

          But yes, I agree that it’s going out of business that will kill the value of points. Right now, some major airlines are surviving thanks to the value of their mileage programs. The airlines certainly know that they can’t kill the golden goose.

      • Avatar

        While I love the idea of these resorts, travel abroad seems difficult to plan for…even NYE. Could you list some domestic hotels next time?

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          Totally understood. We were certainly optimistic that international travel would return sooner than it seems it will be 🙁

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            Neither will International traffic be realistically and practically resumed in 2021. The whole mess has become a confidence crisis. Before the coronvarius; I am sure that 1% of the population in any country suffered from flu at any given time.

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    Not sure this is a good time to buy points.

    The future is still uncertain for travel and hospitality.

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    I much prefer Hilton as a chain and use IHG as my back up. Although points are a similar cost to buy when you actually compare redemption rates generally IHG seem to be much cheaper for similar standards of hotels in similar areas.

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    As there is the same offer almost each month it’s better to buy points only when necessary so to avaoid any risk of devaluation.

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    Here comes the sun, oops, I meant devaluation.

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    The rate at which you are buying points in this promotion appears to be similar to the cash rate paid for points plus cash. Unless there was simmering that I was immediately going to book that was better value in points I wouldn’t buy at the moment. There is too much of a risk of a devaluation in all hotel and airline points/miles schemes at the moment.

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    I think that the promotion is quite good with my only 7000 points minimum requirements. Unfortunately, with so many travel restrictions now I cannot take advantage of it.

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    Michaelj1 says:

    I don’t think we will be traveling for a long, long time. So, no purchasing points now.

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    I agree with the other commenters who say “buyer beware.” I’m working on a 140,000 cc IHG bonus at the moment, and there will simply have to be a devaluation after this… based on everything that’s happened over the past few years in this game.

  • Avatar

    IHG has always been selling points with a 100% bonus, so I’m hoping they will increase the bonus amount to account for the current situation.
    If the bonus goes up beyond 100%, I will definitely buy some.

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    Right now I dont see it as a good time to buy miles.

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    I can’t believe that I never thought of filling up credit card bonus requirement spending on purchasing points before. I guess that I would prefer spending for immediate and direct usage on travel, rather than just purchasing points to bank for later use.

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    Long-term planning gives us something to look forward to, so we can cheer up a bit.

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    Steven William Van Meter says:

    It’s a good time for this deal. During this massive over reaction to the covid, companies are starting to offer some great deals that benefit the consumer.

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    The offer itself is great, but considering the current coronavirus outbreak, it would be wise to reconsider your plan before making purchase. If you are destined to travel in a certain period, then this is the offer you don’t want to miss. For people who are still hesitant, maybe it’s good to wait for the next available offer just like the author mentioned.

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    Do you expect a devaluation as the company tries to survive the Covid downturn?

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    I heard that IHG recently had an offer for 4x on IHG Visa card spend. Any info?

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    No, I wouldn’t buy points right now, even with the bonus. I have a fairly decent stash already, plus I have no idea when I’ll be able to use them. Sure, the points don’t expire (with elite status) and expiration dates are being extended across most if not all programs anyway, but I’d rather hold on to my cash in these uncertain times. The bonus will be back soon enough. Stay safe, everyone!

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    It has been awhile since my last IHG stay, so this is a good opportunity to reset the expiration date.

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    This is a cash generator for a company that needs it for operating expenses now. I keep a small stash of IHG points for last minute stays (when the value is right) and wouldn’t buy anymore however I would treat any purchase as I would like buying “gift certificates” from my local restaurants – assuming they stay in business so when they open again they are still around. if they are close down them I think of it as a donation.

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    Florencia says:

    I think they are very good deals, although I don’t know if I would like to book now for New Year’s Eve 2020 in Portugal.

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    Right now I’m afraid to buy points or miles really anywhere given the Aviance bankruptcy and the possibility so many others will do the same. Sell the miles or points, give execs bonuses and file bankruptcy…do you trust corporate America not to do it?

    • Avatar

      I certainly understand your suspicions and worry. However, I believe I’ve seen that miles usually make it thru and survive a bankruptcy. It’s worth researching, if you’re concerned.