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You can get a complimentary weekend night through InterContinental Ambassador: Here's how

May 21, 2023
8 min read
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Editor's Note

This post has been updated with new information.

IHG's InterContinental Ambassador program effectively lets you buy IHG elite status and get additional perks when you stay at select IHG brands. Ambassador members get many perks, but one of the most valuable is a complimentary weekend night each membership year.

In this guide, I'll discuss the InterContinental Ambassador program and how to leverage it to get a free night at an InterContinental hotel or resort.

InterContinental Ambassador program overview

InterContinental Hayman Island Resort in Australia. ERIC ROSEN/THE POINTS GUY

For $200 or 40,000 IHG points — which are worth $200 based on TPG's valuations — you can purchase a 12-month InterContinental Ambassador membership. This membership provides perks when staying at InterContinental hotels and resorts, including a one-category room upgrade, 4 p.m. late checkout and up to a $20 food and beverage credit per stay.

InterContinental Ambassador perks generally aren't applicable when you stay at other IHG brands. However, Ambassadors get a few extra perks at participating Six Senses, Mr. and Mrs. Smith and InterContinental Alliance Resorts properties when booking through eligible methods.

InterContinental Ambassador membership also includes IHG One Rewards Platinum Elite status. You may not want to pay for Ambassador solely for Platinum Elite status if you are eligible for the IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card or IHG® Rewards Premier Business Credit Card. After all, these IHG credit cards provide Platinum Elite status and access to the fourth-night-free reward perk when redeeming IHG points for a lower annual fee than an Ambassador membership.

Related: What credit card should you use for IHG stays?

Complimentary weekend night

InterContinental Phuket Resort in Thailand. KATIE GENTER/THE POINTS GUY

The InterContinental Ambassador complimentary weekend night perk has the potential to save you more than the $200 membership fee every 12 months.

You get a complimentary weekend night each time you purchase or renew your InterContinental Ambassador membership. This complimentary weekend night works differently than the reward nights you can earn from IHG credit cards and other promotions. Instead of being worth up to a set number of points, the complimentary weekend night covers the room and tax on the second night of a paid booking on an eligible rate.

You may redeem your complimentary weekend night up to 12 months from when it was issued. To use the certificate, you must book a stay of two nights or longer using the complimentary weekend night rate.

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You can only book this special rate at InterContinental hotels and resorts (excluding InterContinental Alliance Resorts) for weekend stays, defined as Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights in most regions. So you'd need to check in on a Friday or Saturday to book this rate and get a complimentary weekend night.

InterContinental Maldives Maamunagau Resort in the Maldives. KATIE GENTER/THE POINTS GUY

Before we look at the booking process, there are a few other things you should know about the complimentary weekend night:

  • The complimentary weekend night rate usually isn't the least expensive flexible rate.
  • You can't enjoy a complimentary weekend night in conjunction with an award stay, anniversary night stay or other promotion. You must book online using the complimentary weekend night rate.
  • Only the InterContinental Ambassador member can use the complimentary weekend night. Another traveler won't be able to use your complimentary weekend night.
  • You must make advance reservations and you can only use at most one complimentary weekend night per stay. You can also only have one reservation booked at any time using the complimentary weekend night rate. If you have multiple reservations using this rate, IHG or the individual hotel may cancel your bookings.
  • You must have an unredeemed and valid complimentary weekend night in your account when you check in to the hotel. If you don't, you'll need to pay the hotel's best flexible rate for all nights of your stay.
  • The complimentary weekend night only covers the room rate and tax. You'll need to pay any fees, including resort fees, on your complimentary night. You'll see the full price without the complimentary weekend night benefit applied when you book; the second night is credited to your bill at check-in.

Remember that the Ambassador one-category upgrade benefit applies to complimentary weekend nights when choosing a room type. However, one quirk of this guaranteed benefit is that it won't upgrade you to Club InterContinental access. If you book a room or suite category that's one category lower than an advertised Club room or suite category, you'll get the one-category upgrade without Club InterContinental lounge access. You'll only get lounge access if you book a room type with lounge access (or you have an annual lounge membership through IHG's milestone rewards program).

Related: 7 of the best hotel credit cards that come with an annual free night

How to book your free night

To book your complimentary weekend night, go to your IHG One Rewards account homepage, scroll down to find "Ambassador weekend nights" and click the "Book your nights" link in this tile.


Then under "Free Nights and booking rewards," find the "Ambassador Complimentary Weekend Night" tile and click "Redeem."


Or, you can shortcut that by just starting your search through this specific link:


This page lets anyone check the Ambassador complimentary weekend night rate (displayed as "AMB CERTIFICATE"). This is great if you don't have InterContinental Ambassador but want to determine how much you'd save with a membership.

As you look at your search results, pay attention to the Ambassador complimentary weekend night rate. Unfortunately, you'll notice this rate often isn't the least expensive flexible rate.


For example, here are the rates at both the Ambassador complimentary weekend level and the least expensive flexible level for a two-night stay on April 12 - 14, 2024, at the InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa:

Rates for the 2-night stay, including taxes and feesGardenPoolLagoonBeachfrontClub Suite
Ambassador complimentary weekend night rate$809.84, with $427.42 credited at check-in, for a net cost of $382.42.$944.82, with $494.90 credited at check-in, for a net cost of $449.92.$1,115.79, with $607.38 credited at check-in, for a net cost of $508.41.$1,349.74, with $719.86 credited at check-in, for a net cost of $629.88.$1,570.20, with $872.83 credited at check-in, for a net cost of $697.37.
Cheapest flexible rate$785.55.$916.47.$1,082.31.$1,309.25.$1,523.09.

The above chart demonstrates the nightly premium you'll need to pay to use your complimentary weekend night. But since one of the nights is free if you use your complimentary weekend night, this perk can more than pay for an Ambassador membership.

You'll usually want to make your Ambassador complimentary weekend night just a few nights long. The value of the free night tends to decrease the longer you stay using the complimentary weekend night rate.

Related: The 19 best IHG hotels in the world

Bottom line

When used strategically, the complimentary weekend night perk can easily make up the $200 InterContinental Ambassador membership fee. For example, I saved around $286 off the cheapest available rate during my two-night stay at the InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa in 2019. In addition, I knew going in that I'd get a guaranteed room upgrade, 4 p.m. guaranteed late checkout and a $20 food and beverage credit. All of that adds up to $200 well invested in the InterContinental Ambassador program.

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Additional reporting by Katie Genter.

Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.