IHG Announces Award Category Changes at 400 Locations

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Last year, IHG announced significant changes to its loyalty program, including a new top tier elite level and points expiration policy. Then the brand announced it would be changing the award night requirements for 450 properties, raising redemptions by 5,000 or 10,000 points at 300 locations and lowering redemptions by 5,000 points at 150 locations. Today, IHG is issuing yet another round of new award night requirements.

Here’s what you need to know: Award night redemptions will either increase or decrease by 5,000 or 10,000 IHG Rewards Club points at approximately 400 of their more than 5,000 hotels worldwide. All reward night reservations made prior to February 17 will be honored by the brand at the current point requirement levels.

In the last round of IHG’s award night requirement increases, notable properties included the InterContinental Hong Kong, InterContinental Presidente Cozumel Resort Spa and the InterContinental Chicago Magnificent Mile, among others. However, if this award night redemption increase has you feeling discouraged, IHG announced its latest list of PointBreaks hotels earlier this week. PointBreaks properties offer customers stays for just 5,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night at more than 150 select properties in its global portfolio — a pretty good deal for some properties that are normally as much as 30,000 points per night.

Specific Hotel Changes

Although approximately 400 hotels will be changing the cost of their award nights, many are just roadside or small town properties that probably won’t impact most travelers’ plans — you can check out the full list on IHG’s website — however, there were a few properties that could potentially encourage or discourage travelers from choosing to stay at a specific property.

InterContinental Hong Kong

The InterContinental Hong Kong will increase award night redemptions to 60,000
The InterContinental Hong Kong will increase award night redemptions to 60,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night.

Rated as one of the best hotels in the city, the InterContinental Hong Kong is equipped with exceptional views of the surrounding cityscape. The incredible property’s award night redemption was increased during last year’s changes from 45,000 to 50,000 — this year the increase expanded  from 50,000 points per night to 60,000.

InterContinental Carlton Cannes

The InterContinental Carlton Cannes is increasing award night redemptions to 60,000 points per night.
The InterContinental Carlton Cannes is increasing award night redemptions to 60,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night.

The luxurious InterContinental Carlton Cannes overlooks the picturesque Bay of Cannes in southern France. The property also has its own exclusive beach restaurant and pier. Rewards nights will soon require 60,000 points per night, up from the current 50,000.

Holiday Inn Express Shangdi Beijing

The Holiday Inn Express Shangdi Beijing in China in increasing from 10,000 to 20,000 points.
The Holiday Inn Express Shangdi Beijing is increasing award night redemptions from 10,000 to 20,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night.

The Holiday Inn Express Shangdi Beijing is located in the heart of the Zhongguancun Shangdi Information Industry Base, making it a popular location for business travelers. This property is increasing its redemption awards from 10,000 to 20,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night.

However, with all the negative changes mentioned, there are some sweet spots in the mix. IHG decreased the number of points required for award stays for a few notable properties, including the InterContinental Sao Paulo (from 40,000 points per night to 35,000), the Crowne Plaza Nanjing Jiangning in China (from 30,000 points per night to 25,000), the Crowne Plaza Padova in Italy (from 30,000 points per night to 25,000) and the Holiday Inn Hotel and Suites Tampa N — Busch Gardens Area (from 20,000 points per night to 15,000).

You can sign up for the IHG Rewards Club Select Card, which comes with a sign-up bonus of 70,000 points after you spend $2,000 in the first three months of account opening. It also comes with an annual free night each year of membership. One thing IHG has going for itself is sheer size as there are more than 5,000 properties worldwide. And while many of them are unexceptional, there are some nice properties worth the award night redemptions.

Which properties on the list caught your eye?

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