IHG One Rewards launched an all new elite program last year, adding a whole slate of new benefits including top tier Diamond status with free daily breakfast, and benefit choices like confirmed suite upgrades, club lounge access, and food and beverage spending credit to use on property.
The food and beverage credit is a ‘choice benefit’ and members have been choosing these since the program launched and guests started reaching the required number of nights.
But they haven’t yet been able to spend them. These are $20 credits which can be applied to a stay folio for spending at hotel restaurants, in-room dining, minibar food and beverage items (and can be used to cover tax and tip where applicable). Fortunately they’re now going live in the first wave of a release.
Properties are ‘turning on’ this benefit starting today, and over the course of the next several days, at U.S. luxury, lifestyle, and premium brands with other chains and regions to follow later in the year. This includes InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, Hotel Indigo, voco, EVEN Hotels, and Crowne Plaza hotels. These vouchers can be applied inside of the chain’s mobile app.
Personally I’d only choose food and beverage rewards at levels where points are the only other option, since the value of the in-hotel spend will be much greater than the value of the points (which I value at half a cent apiece). At 20 nights I’d take a confirmed suite upgrade; 40 nights an annual lounge membership (some won’t stay at properties with lounges) and confirmed suite upgrade; and 70 nights four confirmed suite upgrades. At 30, 50, 60, 80 and beyond the F&B spend credit makes sense, I think, for those who will stay in hotels with opportunities to spend on property.
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