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The IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card is a well-rounded hotel card with valuable benefits for anyone who stays with IHG at least a few times each year.
Right now is a great time to get this card, with a new cardmember offer of 140,000 bonus points (an all-time high).
In this post, we'll break down the ongoing benefits to help you decide whether the IHG Rewards Premier Card is a good fit for your upcoming travel goals.
- 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)
The IHG Rewards Premier Card a relatively new addition to the Chase portfolio, replacing the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card (which is no longer open to new applicants).
Points Earning Potential and Category Bonuses
The IHG Rewards Premier Card receives a higher earn rate on IHG purchases than its predecessor. All things considered, cardholders will earn 25X points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel, 2X points at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants, and 1 point per $1 on all other purchases.
The earning for spending at IHG hotels can be a bit deceiving if you're comparing head-to-head with other cards. In reality, you could earn 15X points per dollar out of the 25X marketed by Chase if you already hold Platinum Elite Status in the IHG® Rewards Club program. Here is how it breaks down.
- Earn 10X points for being a IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Cardmember — this is the part that is only available if you have this card.
- Earn 5X points from IHG® with Platinum Elite Status—a benefit of having this card if you don't earn the status through IHG stays.
- 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).
IHG Rewards Premier Card Feature Benefits
Reward Night Certificate
The bad news for IHG fans is the devaluation of the reward night certificate awarded on your card’s account anniversary. Up until the release of the new IHG cards, the anniversary reward night was valid at any participating IHG hotel. Following recent changes, however, the certificate is limited to properties pricing at 40,000 points or less. IHG has put together a website listing the hotels excluded from the reward night certificate. At this stage, it includes roughly 200 of IHG’s 5,300+ hotels worldwide. The reward night certificate must be booked and the stay competed within 12 months of being issued.
“Anniversary Reward Night is valid at IHG® Hotels with a current point redemption level of 40,000 points or less, and must be redeemed, and stay must be completed, within 12 months from the date of issue.”
4th Night Free on Award Stays
A fresh perk offered on both of IHG’s new rewards cards; cardholders receive the fourth night free on all award bookings of four or more consecutive nights. Rather than averaging the cost of four nights and offering the savings as a rebate, the IHG fourth night free is included complimentary at the time of booking the room, so you’ll only require enough points for three nights in your account to take advantage of this benefit. When combined with the ability to purchase IHG points at a 20% discount (see below), you can reduce the cost of buying points well under the level required to be profitable.
Complimentary Platinum Elite Status
IHG elite status doesn’t offer the same value as top hotel rewards programs, but Platinum Elite status does entitle members to a 50% bonus on top of base points and complimentary room upgrades when available, plus a few other perks. Cardholders receive Platinum status for as long as they hold the card.
Global Entry or TSA Pre✓® Fee Credit
If you already hold a card that offers a Global Entry/TSA Pre Credit, this benefit likely won’t pique your interest, although you can gift the credit to a family member by charging their fee to your card. The IHG Rewards Premier Card receives a Global Entry credit, up to $100 in value, every four years.
20% Discount on Points Purchases
The discount allows you to purchase IHG Rewards Club points at a 20% discount. Searching the T&C’s, there is no language preventing cardmembers from stacking this discount with other savings when IHG points are already on sale, which opens up some exciting possibilities. IHG regularly runs promos allowing you to buy points with up to a 100% bonus, which reduces the cost of points down to 0.5¢ each. Stack the 20% discount as an IHG Rewards Premier Card cardholder, and you’ll reduce the cost of points down to 0.4¢ per piece. Stack both discounts/bonuses with the 4th-night free benefit, and you’ll receive a further 25% off the cost of an award, reducing the effective cost of purchased points down to 0.3¢ per point. Decreasing the cost well under the value you’d typically receive from IHG Rewards Club points. It’s yet to be seen if members that hold both the old and new cards can stack the fourth night free received on the new cards with the 10% rebate on points from the superseded IHG card.
Outside of Chase’s published application restrictions (and those we’ve pieced together), all data points indicate the IHG Rewards Premier Card is now subject to the 5/24 policy, meaning you won't be approved for the card if you've opened 5+ cards in the previous 24 months.
It also looks like current cardholders of the IHG Select Card aren't restricted from applying for the new IHG co-brand cards, opening up the possibility of receiving two anniversary reward night certificates each year.
The new IHG Rewards Premier Card offers plenty of value for IHG loyalists. If you stay with IHG at least once each year, the 40K point anniversary reward night should easily cover the card's ongoing $89 annual fee. Once you factor in a fourth night free on award bookings and the benefits of complimentary elite status, it's easy to justify keeping this card for the long term.
Right now is an ideal time to add the IHG Rewards Premier Card to your wallet and pick up 140,000 bonus points. That gives you plenty of time to test out the card's benefits—and lot's of points to do it in style.
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