IHG moved to reward night dynamic pricing. While many comments I have read on other blogs lament an IHG devaluation, my reaction is to lament my inability to travel to many places where I see fantastic hotel deals available for booking discount reward nights over the next year. Generally speaking, I do not find IHG points that valuable for most IHG hotels due to reward rates frequently exceeding the cost of paid rates when valuing IHG points at $5 per 1,000 points. Recent changes offer IHG points discount rates for reward nights at up to 50% off for many hotels around the USA and world.
InterContinental Ljubljana, Slovenia at 17,500 per night when rates are $180/night means a rate savings of more than 50% paying for reward nights.
Intercontinental Lisbon at 21,000 points per night, Holiday Inn Krakow City Centre at 12,500 points per night are some deals I would love to jump on for IHG hotel stays.
Last week I redeemed most of my IHG points at 25,000 points per night for a week at Kimpton Amsterdam, a hotel that is typically 55,000 points per night on many other dates. My reward stay reservation is scheduled more than six months from now. I give the probability I will be allowed to fly to Amsterdam in 2020 at less than 50% given the inexcusable USA response to control spread of the coronavirus epidemic. Still, since my summer trip to Europe has already been canceled, a trip plan for next winter gives me another travel destination to look forward to as we continue to drift along aimlessly through the horse latitudes of our Covid-19 national response.
Why I purchased $500 in IHG points last week
While I have no plans to travel this summer, I spent $500 to purchase 100,000 IHG Rewards Club points last week to help a friend road trip travel this summer for a visit with relatives. Some of the best value deals I see are hotels in the USA with $120+ room rates after tax offering reward nights for 12,500 points. At $5 per 1,000 points a room booked using 12,500 points cost $62.50 all in.
My friend’s road trip with six nights cost 75,000 IHG points or $375 and saved over $700 in room rates.