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Best ways to redeem IHG points

Free night rewards offer the best value

Summary

See how to get the most value out of your IHG points.

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IHG Rewards Club points are fairly versatile and can be redeemed for all sorts of purchases, including the unique option to book non-IHG hotel stays or flights through the IHG travel portal. Rewards Club members can also transfer their points to 39 different travel partners. However, your points won’t stretch quite as far with some redemption options, so carefully consider the value before you cash in.

Earn 80,000 bonus points in your first three months

IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
IHG Rewards Club Premier card

Why should you get this card?

Though IHG points are a bit inflated, the bonus on the new IHG Rewards Club Premier card is a great incentive to sign up.

Learn more

More things to know:

  • For the first 12 months:
    • 40 points per dollar on IHG hotel stays (25 points per dollar from the card and 15 points per dollar as an IHG Rewards Club member)
    • 4 points per dollar on all other purchases

    After the first 12 months:

    • 25 points per dollar on IHG hotel stays (10 points per dollar from the card and 15 points per dollar as an IHG Rewards Club member)
    • 2 points per dollar on gas station, grocery store and restaurant purchases
    • 1 point per dollar on other purchases
  • 125,000 bonus points if you spend $3,000 in first 3 months
  • 10,000 bonus points every year you spend $20,000
  • Free hotel night on your card member anniversary
  • Automatic Platinum Elite status with IHG Rewards Club

IHG Rewards Club redemption options

Redemption optionPoint value (cents)
Reward nights0.55
Gift cards0.25
Merchandise/digital downloads0.25
Flights (through IHG travel portal)0.3
Non-IHG Hotels (through IHG travel portal)0.23

Reward nights

To get the most out of your points, you’ll want to redeem them for free night rewards. We value IHG points at around 0.55 cents per point when redeemed this way. This is calculated based on the average value when redeemed for properties of different prices across different dates.

If you opt for a less-expensive property, your points might stretch a bit further. A reward night at an IHG property costs anywhere from 10,000 to 70,000 points. Based on the average room rate across categories, we’ve calculated the point value as seen below.

CategoryPointsPoint value (cents)

1

10000

0.009

2

15000

0.007

3

20000

0.007

4

25000

0.005

5

30000

0.005

6

35000

0.006

7

40000

0.005

8

45000

0.006

9

50000

0.005

10

55000

0.005

11

60000

0.005

12

70000

0.005

IHG reward nights work on a fixed redemption chart. So if you search for a room at a busier time of year, you might snag a pricier room for the same number of points. Luckily, the program does not impose any blackout dates on reward nights.

For Rewards Club members who are a bit short on points, IHG also offers a Points & Cash option. You’ll need a minimum of 5,000 points to take advantage of this offer, but you will be able to combine rewards and cash when you book your reward night.

Gift cards

Unfortunately, the only cash redemption option IHG offers for Rewards Club points is gift cards. If you choose to redeem your points this way, you’ll only get about a quarter of a cent per point. While not the greatest value, this option can be good for those who want to use points but don’t have a trip scheduled anytime soon.

Merchandise

Another way to redeem IHG Rewards Club points is through their online catalog, where you can shop for various merchandise. The value of your points varies drastically based on the item you buy, so savvy shoppers can often find great deals. However, most purchases only get you around 0.25 cents per point. If you choose to shop for merchandise with your points, be sure to research the cost of each item in cash to ensure you are getting a good deal.

Alternatively, you can use your points to pay for digital downloads. Like merchandise, these rewards don’t always get a high value out of your points – though they tend to be a little more fruitful.

Travel purchases

IHG Rewards Club members have another unique way of redeeming points – travel purchases with other providers. IHG has its own travel portal, allowing members to book flights, hotels and car rentals directly with rewards points.

Second to reward nights, flights booked through the IHG travel portal get the most value out of your IHG points. At only 0.3 cents per point, an IHG point probably won’t stretch as far as an airline rewards program mile. However, travelers can book their whole trip with IHG rewards.

Like the flight portal, IHG also offers a travel portal for hotel bookings. This provides members the opportunity to use points for stays at non-IHG properties. Of all the IHG point redemption options, though, this ekes the least value out of each point. Since IHG has thousands of properties in cities all around the world, you are better off searching for an IHG option and redeeming points for a reward night.

Transfer to a partner airline

If none of these redemption options appeal to you, you can also transfer IHG points to 39 partner airline programs. The transfer rate for most partners is poor (5:2 in most cases), but since many airline miles are worth more than an IHG point, you can still stretch your points a bit further in some cases.

Reward nights at an IHG hotel will always get the best value for each point. However, the transfer partners listed below will get a better deal than the other IHG redemption options. (View full list of IHG transfer partners and transfer rates on their website.)

Transfer partnerTransfer rateMiles valuation (cents)Value of transferred IHG point (cents)
Air Canada5:11.50.3
Alaska Airlines5:11.610.32
American Airlines5:11.90.38
British Airways5:11.40.28
Delta Airlines5:11.610.32
JetBlue5:11.530.31
Singapore Airlines5:12.360.47
United Airlines5:11.520.3

Bottom line

To stretch your IHG points, redeem for reward nights whenever possible. If you need to redeem for other purchases, opt for merchandise, flights booked through the IHG travel portal or a point transfer. If you are willing to hunt for a good deal, these options can all get good value out of your rewards.

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