Posted by Ric Garrido

IHG Rewards Club points are on sale with a targeted mystery bonus offer for 25%, 50%, 75% or 100% more points on your purchase. This offer is available through 11:59pm ET April 21, 2014. My email offer came from IHG Rewards Club on Friday, March 21 with the title “Reveal Your Mystery Bonus”.

My targeted offer was 50% bonus points. I will pass on this promotion. Note that the offer is targeted to the specific IHG Rewards Club member and is non-transferrable.

The regular purchase rate for IHG Rewards Club points ranges from $11.50 to $13.50 per 1,000 points. The price is lower when purchasing a higher number of points.

You may purchase points in 1,000 increments:

  • 1,000 – 10,000 points for $13.50 per 1,000 points
  • 11,000 – 25,000 points for $12.50 per 1,000 points
  • 26,000 – 60,000 points for $11.50 per 1,000 points

Here are the promotional rates depending on your bonus offer:

25% Bonus Points

  • 1,000 – 10,000 points for $10.80 per 1,000 points
  • 11,000 – 25,000 points for $10.00 per 1,000 points
  • 26,000 – 60,000 points for $9.20 per 1,000 points

50% Bonus Points

  • 1,000 – 10,000 points for $9.00 per 1,000 points
  • 11,000 – 25,000 points for $8.33 per 1,000 points
  • 26,000 – 60,000 points for $7.67 per 1,000 points

75% Bonus Points

  • 1,000 – 10,000 points for $7.71 per 1,000 points
  • 11,000 – 25,000 points for $7.14 per 1,000 points
  • 26,000 – 60,000 points for $6.57 per 1,000 points

100% Bonus Points

  • 1,000 – 10,000 points for $6.75 per 1,000 points
  • 11,000 – 25,000 points for $6.25 per 1,000 points
  • 26,000 – 60,000 points for $5.75 per 1,000 points

IHG Mystery Purchase

IHG Rewards Club bonus points offer analysis

My targeted offer was 50% bonus points. I will not consider this offer at 50% bonus points. The 50% bonus points offer means I would pay $90 for 10,000 points or I could buy 60,000 points for $460.

Through booking Points & Cash rewards and canceling the reward reservation after I purchase points, I can buy 60,000 points for $420.

There is no discount with this mystery bonus offer compared to the other option I have for acquiring points.

The only real deal here is if you are targeted for 100% bonus points. The rate drops to $5.75 per 1,000 points. The 100% bonus means 120,000 points can be purchased for $690.

This is $150 less than buying 120,000 points through Points & Cash reservations that are cancelled after booking. It will cost $840 to buy 120,000 points through Points & Cash rewards or $690 to buy 120,000 points for a member targeted with the 100% bonus points.

Buying IHG Rewards Club points is not an elite qualifying points transaction, so that is not a consideration here in favor of the Points.com purchase.

In my opinion, this mystery bonus points offer is just another IHG marketing gimmick with little value for the savvy IHG Rewards Club member. I’d only consider this offer if I needed some points to enable booking Points & Money rewards to buy more points at a lower rate.

Here is a response I posted on Deals We Like when she asked, Is Purchasing InterContinental Points Worthwhile?

Last year when IHG Rewards Club points were available for $567 to buy 100,000 points during the U.S. Travel Association’s Daily Getaways, the IHG points did not sell out.

As Stephen Colbert likes to say, “The market has spoken”.

If you have a plan for using IHG points, then this current sale is a good deal at 100% bonus points.

Otherwise stay once or twice at an IHG brand hotel, earn 10,000+ points through stackable promotion bonuses, and then book Points & Cash reward stays to buy more points and cancel those stays to build your account balance at the rate of 10,000 points for $70 when you actually need points.

http://loyaltytraveler.boardingarea.com/2013/06/28/ihg-daily-getaway-points-pointbreaks-and-the-trick-in-pictures/#sthash.WaeWM0Ol.dpbs

http://loyaltytraveler.boardingarea.com/2013/11/05/brg-follow-up-holiday-inn-express-tehachapi-california/
This post shows how I received nearly 16,000 points on a one night stay at a Holiday Inn Express. And I even got my money back for the hotel stay payment since it was a Best Rate Guarantee.

*****

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California is writer and owner of Loyalty Traveler.

Loyalty Traveler shares news and views on hotels, hotel loyalty programs and vacation destinations for frequent guests.

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4 Responses

  1. Ric,

    I was targeted at 100 percent and I’m a bit unclear about your stance here since you say you would only do it at 100 percent than say but only if you have a target in mind (I’m thinking Paris at the IC Le Grand).

    Is it worth it or would you pass for that kind of redemption? (I have 300K already with IHG.)

  2. It is clearly a no-brainer if you want to stay at LeGrand next week – you could effectively save 50 per cent buying at $5.75 per 1000. But you need to do the maths based on your dates.

    Note also that InterCon 50k rewards are ripe for devaluation in my book. I would be very nervous buying if I had no firm plans to redeem during 2014.

  3. If you are planning to redeem the points for a hotel where you know the rate and know you are getting a better deal, then certainly buy points to save money.

    I personally would not spend $300 per night for a hotel stay, so even at the lowest rate to buy points and 50,000 points reward nights at some InterContinental Hotels, I am sure I could find a more suitable hotel in the same area for my travel needs at $150 per night.

  4. I got the 100% offer, but with 500K IHG points built up I am a pass also.

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