Note that IHG has not communicated this to members, so they aren’t even giving us the 8 days notice, members have discovered this on our own. If there are any hotels going up in price you want to book, get on it since if you book future stays prior to January 14th you can do so at the lower pricing. What’s more, consider making speculative bookings, since most redemptions are cancellable.
- Of approximately 5500 hotels 696 are changing award pricing
- 570 (82%) are getting more expensive
- About 2/3rds of the increases are at US hotels
- The average redemption price is going up 13%
In most cases you’ll find hotels that are getting more expensive going up by 5000 points. However some, like the Intercontinental Dusseldorf, go up 10,000 (50,000 to 60,000 per night).
For those who like to redeem in China there are some nice 5000 drops like the Intercontinentals in Tangshan, Shanghai Expo, Heilong Lake, Llasa, and One Thousand Island Lake Resort. If you’re foolhardy enough to go to Venezuela, the Intercontinental in Caracas drops from 30,000 to 25,000 points per night. And the Intercontinental in Hanoi drops from 35,000 to 30,000 points per night — perfect if you need a night in the city before flying out on one of the Cathay Pacific fares.
Intercontinental Hanoi, credit: IHG
A number of Kimpton hotels are dropping in price. Bear in mind that IHG has struggled with the Kimpton brand since killing off Kimpton Karma Rewards and folding members into IHG Rewards Club.
- Kimpton Goodland (Goleta, California) 50,000 points drops to 45,000
- Kimpton Sawyer (Sacramento) 50,000 points drops to 45,000
- Kimpton Angler’s (Miami) 60,000 points drops to 55,000
- Kimpton Vero Beach (Vero Beach, Florida) 65,000 points drops to 60,000
- Kimpton Monaco Baltimore (Baltimore) 40,000 points drops to 35,000
- Kimpton Tryon Park (Charlotte) 50,000 points drops to 45,000
- Kimpton Lorien (Alexandria, Virginia) 50,000 points drops to 45,000
- Kimpton Taconic (Manchester, Vermont) 50,000 points drops to 45,000
Last year IHG introduced new more expensive 70,000 point redemptions and price increases outnumbered decreases 2.5 to 1 (again with most increases centered in the U.S.). It was the same story the year before too with 3-to-1 increases to decreases, also focused on the U.S.
IHG Rewards Club needs to maintain an attractive earn and burn program because that’s really what it has going for it. Elite benefits are mostly non-existent, and there’s no ability to spend additional points when redeeming for a better than base room. It’s all about a strong rebate proposition, something this mitigates against somewhat.
(HT: One Mile at a Time)