Jan202012

Analysis of 2012 InterContinental Hotel Reward Tier Changes

IHG Priority Club added new reward tiers to its points redemption chart on January 18, 2012. Annoying from the consumer point of view is Priority Club’s decision to withhold publishing a list of some 2,000 hotel reward cost changes with the new tier adoption. I have made an initial analysis of changes to 168 InterContinental Hotels worldwide based on the work posted on a UK website by CaoChong with the former tier level of InterContinental Hotels and the work posted on LoyaltyLobby.com yesterday regarding the changes to reward tiers. I encourage you to check out the InterContinental Hotels data tables on LoyaltyLobby.com to see the data displayed in a different graphic form than provided in my post.

Here are observations I made concerning the changes to InterContinental Hotel reward tiers.

InterContinental Hotels in the USA (25 hotels in 50 states and Puerto Rico).

  • None of the 8 InterContinental Hotels formerly at 30,000 points increased tier. They are still 30,000 points. Atlanta Buckhead is the only hotel in the USA to decrease from 40,000 to 30,000 points tier.
  • In contrast, 7 of 17 hotels in USA and Puerto Rico increased from 40,000 points to 50,000 points. This means 41% of the hotels in the USA that were 40,000 points per night increase 25% in reward night cost. Austin, Boston, Chicago, New York (2 hotels), Scottsdale, Arizona and San Juan Puerto Rico are now in top tier.
  • In total 1 of 25 (4%) InterContinental Hotels in the USA decreased by 25% and 7 of 25 (28%) InterContinental Hotels increased 25% in reward cost for US properties.

Global Changes

InterContinental Perth is the only hotel to jump from 30,000 points to 50,000 points for a 67% increase in reward cost. InterContinental Sydney is one of only 10 hotels outside the US to increase to 50,000 points.

Australia in general has seen all hotel chains raise reward tiers. Currency exchange rates are a major factor in the increase in Australia hotel reward rates.  Since January 2003 the USD dropped from US$1.00 = AUD$1.70 to the current exchange rate of USD$1 = AUD$0.95. The huge devaluation of the dollar is detrimental to hotel point values which are based on the US dollar exchange rate.

And if you think hotel rates are bad, check out the price of beer in Australia after exchanging US dollars.

Other hotels rising to the 50,000 points reward tier are limited to a few key locations like Bora Bora (2 hotels), Paris (2 hotels), Cannes (1 hotel), Rome (1 hotel), Tokyo (2 hotels) and Hong Kong (1 hotel).

  • 19 hotels are currently in 50,000 points reward tier. Only one hotel, InterContinental Ixtapa Resort in Mexico was 50,000 points prior to the new tiers of Jan 18, 2012.
  • 11 hotels outside the USA increased to 50,000 points reward tier. 7 hotels in USA and Puerto Rico increased to 50,000 points.
  • 19 international hotels decreased from 40K to 30K (27% of formerly 40,000 points hotels).

Formerly 40,000 points reward tier InterContinental Hotels (68 hotels)

  • 18 hotels increased from 40K to 50K (26%). About 25% of InterContinental Hotels worldwide formerly at 40,000 points jumped to 50,000 points tier.
  • 31 hotels remain at 40K (46%).
  • 19 hotels decreased from 40K to 30K (28%).
  • 19 hotels now at 50,000 points. 6 hotels in USA, 1 Puerto Rico and 12 international hotels.
  • 1 hotel (Perth, Australia) increased from 30,000 to 50,000 points (67% jump).
  • 7 hotels in USA and Puerto Rico increased from 40,000 points to 50,000 points per night (7 of 17 hotels or 41% of hotels in USA formerly at 40,000 points went up.)

Formerly 30,000 points reward tier (99 hotels)

  • 99 hotels were 30,000 points before changes.
  • 108 hotels or 10% more hotels are 30,000 points on Jan 20, 2012.
  • 9 international hotels increased from 30,000 to 40,000 points (9% of 30K hotels). One of these hotels is InterContinental Geneva which had just dropped from 40K to 30K in 2010-2011.
  • 1 international hotel (1%) increased from 30,000 to 50,000 points InterContinental Perth.
  • All 8 IC hotels in USA previously at 30,000 points remained at 30,000 points.
  • In all, 89 hotels at 30,000 points before remain at 30,000 points now (90%).
  • 19 additional hotels were lowered to 30,000 points from 40,000 points.

Distribution January 15, 2012 among 168 hotels:

  • 99 hotels (59%) = 30,000 points
  • 68 hotels (41%) = 40,000 points
  • 1 hotel (<1%) = 50,000 points

Distribution  with new reward tier levels on January 20, 2012 among 168 hotels:

  • 108 hotels (64%) = 30,000 points
  • 41 hotels (25%) = 40,000 points
  • 19 hotels (11%) = 50,000 points

InterContinental Hotel Reward Tiers

The spreadsheet image below shows the former tiers of 168 InterContinental Hotels at 30,000 points in blue and 40,000 points in yellow in the first column. The hotels were shifted to the new 30K, 40K and 50K tiers to illustrate by color and position the former and current tiers.

Click on spreadsheet image to open full size in a new window.

New 2012 InterContinental Hotel Reward Tiers - Loyalty traveler

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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Pingbacks

  1. […] Program Change: Priority Club Reward Tiers Change on January 18, 2012. Over 1,000 hotels will increase in reward price. Members will have 60 days (March 18?) to redeem points at the old reward level for hotel stays. Loyalty Traveler post Jan 3, 2012. Loyalty Traveler analysis of changes at InterContinental Hotels January 20, 2012. […]

Comments

  1. Thanks for the detailed analysis. I don’t typically stay at many Intercontinentals, but I was intrigued to see Montreal (one of the few on my list to try) has actually decreased. It’s a shame so many other properties were de-valued, though.

  2. As I guessed, Paris, Rome and NYC all up to 50k now :(. Only real surprise is that London is still 40k. Chicago at 50k is absurd given frequent sales at competitors and low priceline rates.

  3. Interesting. Have been a LOYAL IHG customer for 12 years…now rethinking option, of which there are many.

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