Looks like I have to carry the FLAME torch for IHG on my own, as I am seemingly the only Boarding Area blogger burned last week by a complete change of tasks for the Into the Nights promotion.
Over the past week I deconstructed my experience with the IHG Into the Nights events.
IHG Into the Nights fiasco deconstructed
Loyalty Traveler (Sep 4, 2014) – IHG Rewards Club – We are sorry, but there was an error.
I was staying at the Clarion Royal Christiania in Oslo, Norway when the IHG Rewards Club Into the Nights offer debuted. My September 4 Loyalty Traveler post reminded me that I was one of many IHG Rewards Club members who did not see any Into the Nights offer when it launched in early September. Trying to log into Into the Nights site resulted in an error message.
I was finally able to register for IHG Into the Nights on September 5, 2014 when I saw this offer in my account.
Loyalty Traveler – My IHG Rewards Club Into the Nights offer (Sep 5, 2014)
This IHG Into the Nights offer is the one I planned my hotel reservations around for two trips in November with two Saturday nights booked at Holiday Inn hotels through the IHG App. Those two Saturday nights would have earned one free night and then I only needed to stay one more night on any night of the week at any IHG hotel worldwide to earn the second IHG reward night.
IHG Into the Fights
Early last week there was buzz over the change in tasks related to the IHG mobile app.
Loyalty Traveler – IHG Into the Nights Clusterf#*k (October 20, 2014)
Many IHG Rewards Club members saw their required number of stays booked through the IHG App increase significantly. When I checked my account I saw the IHG app task had changed from “a stay” as seen in the offer above to “10 stays”.
On FlyerTalk there is an IHG Into the Nights 2014 thread with discussion on this promotion. There are FlyerTalk member reports beginning October 17 citing changes to IHG Rewards Club members’ Into the Nights task for the number of stays required to book through IHG mobile app.
FlyerTalk member swancity reported a change from “download and book a stay with the app” to “book 12 stays via the IHG app”. This is post #1,118 on page 75 of the FlyerTalk thread. These changes happened six weeks after the IHG Into the Nights promotion launched on September 4. The issue with the change in the IHG App stays happened on a Friday afternoon and the situation festered over the weekend as members contacted IHG customer service to be told what they were seeing were indeed the new requirements.
The next ten pages of the FlyerTalk IHG Into the Nights thread are filled with other members reporting increases to the task with higher number of stays required using IHG app for booking. Some as high as 59 stays.
Mid-day Monday, October 20, IHG addressed the changes to the IHG app booking terms with post #1275 on the FlyerTalk Into the Nights thread.
IHG Care is the FlyerTalk company representative account for IHG.
Response from IHGCare: Into The Nights Promo
We apologize for the recent issue regarding the Into The Nights Promotion. We have identified the solution and are moving toward quick resolution.
We have been advised of the following:
· All affected IHG Rewards Club members who we know have made progress towards the offer, but then received a revised hurdle offer, will have their offer marked as “completed.”
· IHG Rewards Club will be sending a direct email communication to those members who have made progress toward their offer. We will be letting them know we will be honoring the original offer and marking their progress as complete.
· IHG will be honoring their original offer and IHG Rewards Club Members will see their offer as complete if they made progress toward it. If the members have yet to stay toward their offer, but have already registered, it will transition back to a hurdle of one stay to complete.
· IHG will not be changing any point values, so the members will receive the original amount of points that the offer showcased.
· IHG Rewards Club Members who have yet to register or to see their offers will receive the variable stay amounts. To those who may inquire why they have a variable amount, we are honoring the original offers that members saw when they received their offers. All members who are newly registering are receiving the correct variable amounts.
The bold font is mine. This IHGCare post only appears to address the issue of changes to the IHG app bookings issue.
My issue with IHG Into the Nights is different since I logged into my account on Monday, October 20 to find not only did my IHG app bookings change from “a stay” to book “10 stays”, but all my tasks changed from the Into the Night five tasks I received upon registration on September 5, 2014.
My IHG Into the Nights task for booking through IHG App changed again last week from 10 stays to 1 stay, but the other five tasks are still different from my initial tasks.
My advantage as a blogger is I posted screenshots of my IHG Into the Nights tasks as seen for my account on September 5, 2014 on Loyalty Traveler.
Does IHG Care?
What angers me about the change to my Into the Nights tasks is IHG Rewards Club never notified me the tasks changed for my account.
The first I time I saw the new set of tasks was Monday, October 20, more than six weeks after the promotion launched. I had already booked my hotel stays to fulfill the original five tasks for Into the Nights. Fortunately, my stays were flexible cancellation with no penalty since my new set of tasks does not require any Holiday Inn or Saturday night stays.
There have been no emails to me from IHG about Into the Nights. I could have easily completed my hotel stays to learn that the tasks I fulfilled were no longer the tasks assigned to my account for the Into the Nights promotion.
Only due to bloggers reporting about the changes to the IHG Into the Nights mobile app bookings did I even realize my tasks had changed.
How many other IHG Rewards Club members are going to stay at hotels and find out later that their tasks changed since registration? I can’t imagine that I am the only one out of 70 million global members who had all my Into the Nights tasks change since the promotion launch.
My offer went from one that could be completed with three hotel nights in California to an offer that requires me to either stay 7 nights or stay at IHG hotels in two countries outside the USA.
Have I contacted IHG customer service? No.
I am not concerned about IHG Into the Fights since my new set of tasks can be completed with only two hotel nights when I travel to Dublin and London in November 2014. The cost to fulfill five of six tasks for my Into the Nights offer is still only $200 to $300.
IHG Into the Nights promotion has been a fiasco. Perhaps all will be forgotten as IHG Rewards Club members and bloggers talk and write about their free night redemptions over the next year.
This post is my attempt to keep the record straight and show what a clusterf@#k this IHG Into the Nights promotion was for some IHG Rewards Club members like me.
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. Check out current hotel loyalty program offers across all the major chains in Loyalty Traveler’s monthly hotel promotions guide.