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IHG Rewards Club sure is getting aggressive with selling points. Through November 30, 2015, they were offering a 100% bonus on purchased points. And just a few days later they’re back with the same bonus again.
Through December 11, 2015, IHG Rewards Club is offering a 100% bonus on purchased points. This is as good as bonuses get on the purchase of IHG points.
The cost to purchase points varies based on how many you buy, as follows:
- 1,000 – 10,000 points for $13.50 per 1,000 points
- 11,000 – 25,000 points for $12.50 per 1,000 points
- 26,000 – 60,000 points for $11.50 per 1,000 points
If you max out this promotion and purchase 60,000 points you’d end up paying $690 and would get a total of 120,000 IHG Rewards Club points.
That’s a rate of 0.575 cents per IHG Rewards Club point.
Also keep in mind that if you have the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card you get a 10% refund on award redemptions, up to 100,000 points back each year. That means for the first million points you redeem each year you get a 10% discount.
To do the math slightly differently, the cost per acquired point is really ~0.52 cents, when you factor in the 10% rebate you get when you go to redeem the points, assuming you’re doing so within the above parameters.
Keep in mind that IHG Rewards Club points purchases are processed by points.com, meaning they don’t count as hotel spend for the purposes of your credit card. That means if you buy points you’ll want to use a card which maximizes your return on everyday, non-bonused spend, like the Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card or Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express.
Here are the full terms of the promotion:
Offer available for purchases made between 12:00 AM ET December 4 and 11:59 PM ET December 11, 2015 inclusive. Bonus points will be awarded upon completion of the transaction. Bonus points will be awarded to the recipient of the points purchase. Offer is subject to change. Offer cannot be combined with any other offer. Only purchases made online are eligible for the bonus.Price includes all applicable fees. Purchased Points are not refundable and are applicable toward all IHG® Rewards Club awards. Members may purchase a maximum of 60,000 points per calendar year and receive as a gift a maximum of 60,000 points per calendar year. Please allow 24-48 hours for points to post and appear in the recipient’s account. All other IHG® Rewards Club Terms and Conditions apply.
Is it worth buying IHG points with a 100% bonus?
IHG Rewards Club charges at most 50,000 points per free night, so if buying points that means you’d be paying $287.50 per night for a stay at one of their top hotels (closer to $250 if you factor in the 10% rebate with the co-branded credit card).
If you’re a fan of IHG hotels, that’s a heck of a value, given that many retail for $500+ per night. So I wouldn’t speculatively buy points at this rate just for giggles, but there’s definitely value to be had.
It can be an especially good value if you’re able to redeem points at a PointBreaks hotel, whereby you pay only 5,000 points per night. At a rate of 0.575 cents per point, that’s like paying ~$29 per free night, which is an incredible value.
While I’m usually opposed to speculatively purchasing points, this is as good of a rate as you’ll find for purchasing IHG points. Keep in mind you can buy a maximum of 60,000 IHG points per calendar year pre-bonus, and this is likely the last 100% bonus we’ll see in 2015. So if there’s a time to buy points it’s now, since the limit will reset in under a month.
If I didn’t have a healthy balance of IHG points I’d consider buying some through this promotion.
Do you plan on buying IHG Rewards Club points with a 100% bonus?