Posted by Ric Garrido

InterContinental Hotels Group offers upsells on hotels I have been searching for rate checks this week in the southeast USA. Breakfast for two at a Holiday Inn for $8. 1,000 bonus points for $5. These are good add-on deals in some instances.

Holiday Inn Riverview, Charleston, South Carolina

This Charleston hotel catches my eye with its cylindrical tower shape. There were two similarly shaped Holiday Inn hotels in Los Angeles County with one near the Getty Museum. That hotel rebranded a few years back. The other hotel off I-405 was still a Holiday Inn when I last passed by the building.

HI Charleston-WELCM_EXTR_1_E

Holiday Inn Riverview, Charleston, SC (photo credit: Holiday Inn).

Upsell #1: Breakfast for two at discount rate

HI Charleston breakfast

Breakfast for two = $8.00 on $146 advance purchase, prepaid rate for King room with View.

Breakfast for two = $10.00 on Best Flexible Rate.

Upsell #2 Best Flexible Rate offers discount rate for bonus points purchase.

HI Charleston bonus points

  • Buy 1,000 bonus points for $5.00 at time of reservation booking.
  • Buy 5,000 bonus points for $30 at time of reservation booking. Note this is higher rate at $6 per 1,000 points.

I think this is a brilliant move by IHG Rewards Club to sell points at time of booking a hotel stay and offering a lower purchase rate than members can buy points through a Points and Cash booking and award cancellation for 10,000 points at $70. Paying $5 for 1,000 points or $30 for 5,000 points is a better rate.

Upsell #3 is even cheaper points price

Holiday Inn Express Hardeeville-Hilton Head has an even lower points purchase rate at $24 for 5,000 points.

HIX Hilton Head

Holiday Inn Express Hardeeville-Hilton Head has upsell offer of 5,000 bonus points for $24. Paying $4.80 per 1,000 points is a great deal.

Booking a 5,000 points PointsBreak for points that only cost $24 is one strategy to cheap rooms.

These bonus points upsell offers look like they are only available with a Best Flexible Rate. I did not see bonus points offers for Advance Purchase or group rates like AAA.

I’ve noticed Hilton HHonors also offers bonus points upsell options on many of their rates, however, the cost at $10 to $12 per 1,000 points is not as appealing as these IHG points offers.

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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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7 Responses

  1. For a long time a Holiday Inn Express I use had just a $15 add-on for 5,000 points, but it is now $25. At $15 it was a GREAT deal and I grabbed it. Now – not so much. Of course I’m factoring in that I have in excess of 500K points. If I was in need it would be different.

  2. A maybe six weeks ago I too found a 5,000 point bonus for $5. I also recently had a breakfast add-on for two for $5 at the Holiday Inn Portland Airport. Granted, it might as well be Denny’s food, but even at that rate I was able to get more than $2.50 per person of value out of the add-on.

  3. @ Carl P @ Hua I am salivating reading about your experiences! Is it possible to book a room and then cancel and keep the points?

  4. Last week I booked the $10 breakfast upsell at the Holiday Inn in San Clemente, CA (a terrific property, btw.) At breakfast we were surprised at how limited the breakfast voucher was (one menu item per person, no beverage included) and the kicker cam when the bill showed we were charged tax and a mandatory tip. After I asked why we should pay tax on the price of the meal, when we already paid tax on the $10, they relented, but acted as if they had never thought of this before. I wonder if they’ll stop double-charging tax in future.

    Comment by The Other Carl on April 23rd, 2014 at 9:14 am
  5. @Marek – I would say no as far as the add-on points are concerned. You can do the Points & Cash cancellation referred to above

  6. I find these breakfasts generally inedible. Rather just have a Starbucks pastry which aren’t exactly good either.

  7. @Marek, No — the points aren’t instant, they post along with the regular points after the end of the stay.

    @Nick and @The Other Carl: I found the food at the Portland property to be decent, but wouldn’t pay the normal (inflated) price. In this case the $5 upsell resulted in a voucher of $20 which was more than enough to cover the inflated menu price for full breakfasts and coffee or orange juice for two. Certainly better than a ham and egg sandwich or pastry at Starbucks.

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