There have been so many changes to hotel loyalty programs in the past three years that I needed to check again to see which hotel programs count award stays for elite membership.

Redeeming points for award stays while earning elite membership credit comes in handy when you are trying to reach 25 to 30 stays or 60 to 75 nights in your favorite hotel chain in a calendar year.

Hotel Stays and/or Nights completed in a calendar year qualification for high hotel loyalty program elite membership.

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The first full weekend for the month of July brings another round of discount hotel reward nights with half-price IHG Last Minute Reward Nights.

For this first weekend of the month there are 26 hotels offering 50% off standard reward night rates for Friday, July 4; Saturday, July 5 and Sunday, July 6. These special offer awards must be booked by Thursday, July 3 for the 50% rate.

There are several Candlewood Suites and Staybridge Suites extended stay apartment style properties where you will have a kitchen and space for four with a bed couch in the sitting room.

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InterContinental Hotels Group opened the first hotel in their fitness and wellness brand EVEN in the city of Norwalk, Connecticut this week. The central idea of the hotel brand is catering to people who want an active wellness lifestyle through environment, diet and exercise.

Be Well-comed with infused cool water and scented hand towels. Reminds me of an in-flight before meal experience.

The hotel is four-story, 129 rooms, with public work areas, dining and social areas, natural outdoor spaces, and fitness centers. There are four more hotels in the works with two in Manhattan, one in Brooklyn and one in Rockville, MD. These are all high income bracket centers of commerce.

Even hotel photo

IHG Even Hotels

EVEN Norwalk Rate Check

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IHG Rewards Club Last Minute Reward Nights are out for June 2014 with 50% off standard award rates at 28 select hotels for Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights June 6-8, 2014. These discount award rates are available for bookings made by Thursday, June 5.

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One of the good pieces of news to come out of IHG Rewards Club is all 178 InterContinental Hotels worldwide will have the same points earning structure of 10 points per $1 for hotel folio spend. This changes the current system whereby InterContinental Hotels outside the Americas only earn a maximum 2,000 points per stay in IHG Rewards Club.  That is a lot of points left on the table for someone paying more than $200 for an InterContinental Hotel stay. And most everyone is paying more than $200 outside the Americas.

The change means a $2,000 stay at an InterContinental like IC Amstel in Amsterdam will earn 20,000 base points as of July 1, 2014.

That is a real bonus for those leading the InterContinental life.

Hotel charges not eligible include: No Shows, Gift certificates, Health Club/Spa fees, Ticket sales, Internet Access, Audio Visual, Flowers, postage, etc.

InterContinental Hotels in the Americas changed to earning 10 points per $1 in January 2012.

*****

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.

Follow Loyalty Traveler on Twitter and Facebook and RSS feed.

IHG has rate discounts for all their hotel brands across Europe, including InterContinental Hotels, with 25% off 4-night stays and 30% for other stays from July 4 to September 4, 2014.

This post looks more closely at these discounts and has me asking if the IHG 2-for-1 rate is dead this summer in Europe?

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The list of IHG PointBreaks hotels available from today through July 31, 2014 is posted. There is a change this time around limiting members to two reservations per hotel. The reservation can be an extended stay. I found one of the hotels where I could book an 8-night stay for 40,000 points when rates were $180 per night after tax.

Here are the two additional terms added to this release of Pointbreaks.

“Due to the limited availability, each member may only book two PointBreaks® Reward Nights reservations per hotel during the special offer time period. “

Please note that Reward Nights booked through PointBreaks® may not be sold or used for commercial gains. Doing so is a program violation and may result in the freezing of your account, the forfeiture of all point transfers, rewards, vouchers, or merchandise issued pursuant to point redemptions and any accrued points or miles in your account, as well as cancellation of the account and your future participation in the Program.

Remember, for U.S. residents, points are available to buy through U.S. Travel Association’s Daily Getaways for under $6.00 per 1,000 points making these $30 per night rooms.

Here are the hotels available at 5,000 points per night through July 31, 2014.

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This is the second year where IHG points did not sell out in the Daily Getaways offer today. I suspected this would happen after last year’s IHG points did not sell out either. And next week there is another day of IHG points on U.S. Travel Association’s Daily Getaways. That is still about $300 for a 50,000 points category 9 award night. Or $30 per night for a PointBreaks award night. Those are cheap nights for PointBreaks hotels and 50,000 points will buy 10 nights.

The new list of PointBreaks award nights through July 31, 2014 will post Tuesday, May 27.

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The IHG Reel Summer promotion email announcement today pissed me off when I could not register for the offer through the link provided. Then, IHG emailed again five hours later with a 500 bonus points apology.

Reel Summer is the new IHG Rewards Club global promotion launched today. Stay 3 nights from May 15 to September 2, 2014 and earn 5,000 bonus points. I received an email at 1:30pm today California time.

IHG Summer reel email

Simple and easily achievable bonus offer for summer travel all over the globe and three nights earn 5,000 bonus points. These are sufficient points for a free PointBreaks award free night at 5,000 points.

I clicked the “Register Now” button.

IHG Summer Reel registration

I clicked the “Register Now” button again for promotion code 7093. 

IHG Summer Reel denial

IHG Rewards Club promotion registration denied.

“The code you entered is invalid for your membership. Please check the qualification requirements for your country, region or program. For further assistance please visit the IHG Rewards Club Customer Service Center page.”

After a couple more tries, I gave up trying to register for the promotion. I was annoyed at IHG Rewards Club for somehow messing up my promotion registration email.

At 6:30pm another email from IHG Rewards Club arrived.

Dear Richard,

Due to a technical issue, you may have had difficulty registering. We have confirmed that the issue has been corrected. Please register now. For your inconvenience, we will be awarding you with 500 bonus points which will be automatically deposited into your account.
As one of our most valued IHG® Rewards Club members, we’d like to offer you an exclusive opportunity to continue your winning ways. All you have to do is stay 3 nights and earn 5000 bonus points . Register today and complete your stays at any of IHG’s 4700 properties worldwide between May 15 and September 2, 2014, to take full advantage of your offer. It’s one more way we like to reward our loyal members.

Nice gesture from IHG Rewards Club.

Now, I am registered.

*****

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.

Follow Loyalty Traveler on Twitter and Facebook and RSS feed.

IHG Rewards Club offers 50% off standard award nights for the first weekend of each month at select hotels. There are 28 hotels offered this month with 23 in the USA. Must book by Thursday, May 2.

IHG Last Minute Reward Nights May 2014  Read More…

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