IHG Hotels & Resorts debuts new IHG One Rewards loyalty program
Spire becomes Diamond, Diamond gets breakfast, there's a new Silver level, and more.
What we'll be covering
The IHG Rewards program is getting a fresh new look, starting with a rebrand to IHG One Rewards. Also in for a new name is the program’s top tier, with new perks for elites on the way too. Members will also earn more points compared to the outgoing structure of IHG Rewards.
Notably, members at the program’s highest tier gain free daily breakfast. This makes IHG’s offering more competitive against its rival programs. Those such as Accor Live Limitless, Hilton Honors, Marriott Bonvoy and Radisson Rewards already included breakfast for selected elite travellers.
This is one of the largest and most comprehensive investments that IHG Hotels & Resorts has made in recent years. It’s also the biggest development we’ve made in the loyalty space since introducing the industry’s first loyalty program.
IHG One Rewards has a fresh look and feel and puts guests in control of their journey. It recognizes that no two members are the same and celebrates it – allowing guests to travel, and mark milestones, their own way.
With IHG One Rewards, our members can create the rewards that are right for them.– Claire Bennett, Global Chief Customer Officer at IHG Hotels & Resorts, 13 April 2022
New Silver status tier, Spire becomes Diamond
First up, there’s a new Silver Elite tier. You can earn it after racking up 10 eligible nights. This makes it similar to Gold Elite under the outgoing iteration of the program.
Speaking of Gold Elite, that’s now your reward for notching up 20 eligible nights or 40,000 points from stays. The revised requirements for this level are double what’s needed for Silver Elite, but only half of what it takes for Platinum Elite.
The Platinum Elite tier remains the same to earn or retain, while Spire Elite is now Diamond Elite. This makes more sense in the hierarchy of precious minerals. Here’s how the new tier structure looks:
Qualifying Nights include most paid rates, Reward Night rates and Free Nights. You can use your IHG points for reward stays and still have those stays count towards your status.
Members will also earn bonus points at the revised rates above.
New perks for elite members of IHG One Rewards
Whether you’re an entry-level member or an elite traveller, there are some new benefits to look forward to.
Here are the most notable changes across several of the tiers:
- Club Member: 2 pm late check-out, subject to availability.
- Platinum Elite: Access to Reward Night Discounts, unlocking some room bookings at reduced rates.
- Diamond Elite: Dedicated Diamond support, as well as breakfast as a Welcome Amenity choice.
For those top-tier Diamond members, choosing breakfast provides a daily free hot breakfast for two. Alternatively, these travellers can select bonus points or a drink or snack offering as their Welcome Amenity. That’s handy if breakfast is already included in your reservation or room rate.
Milestone Rewards offer additional perks
Separate to the program’s normal tier benefits, new Milestone Rewards offer additional one-off niceties.
These become available after a traveller stays 20 nights per year. Further Milestone Rewards can be selected every 10 nights thereafter, up to 100 nights per year.
Depending on the number of nights stayed, benefits available can include:
- Bonus points
- $20 food and beverage rewards
- Confirmable suite upgrades
- Annual hotel lounge membership
It’s possible to select a different reward each time. But some of those options may only become available to more frequent travellers. Milestone Rewards are set to take off in early June 2022.
Your current IHG elite tier is safe in 2022
If you’re already an elite status member of IHG, fear not. Your existing tier is preserved until early 2023, after which IHG Rewards will re-assess your status under the new rules.
This means that existing Gold Elite members won’t have to worry about being downgraded to Silver Elite this year.
Members’ stays in 2022 also count towards the new status tiers. Rollover nights will also continue for future Gold Elite, Platinum Elite and Diamond Elite members from 2023.
IHG Rewards is undergoing a big change in 2022. A new name, revamped loyalty tiers and fresh perks no doubt aim to make the program more attractive against the chain’s tough competition.
But as part of the change, we’ve not seen any tweaks to redeeming points for reward nights. Given that IHG Rewards has already transitioned to dynamic pricing, further changes are unlikely at this time.
Still, these changes are generally quite minor. Most travellers can look forward to one new benefit, perhaps, but their travel experience isn’t dramatically shifting.
Additional reporting by Brandon Loo.
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