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Avoid, Avoid, Avoid – Don’t Buy IHG Rewards Points In The Latest Sale

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This is nothing more than a rehash of the article that I usually post whenever IHG Rewards comes up with a sale that offers anything but a 100% bonus, so it’s going to be one of the shorter posts that I write this year. All I really want this post to achieve is to make newcomers to the miles & points hobby aware that the current IHG Rewards Club points sale isn’t very good and to let them know that we’re definitely going to see better sales than this one in months ahead.

IHG Rewards is back with a new points sale in which it’s offering a bonus of between 65% and 75% to anyone willing to buy points by 3 May 2021 (this promotion is targeted so different people will see a different maximum bonus). For the overwhelming majority of people, this is not a good sale at all…and here’s why:

  • IHG frequently (multiple times per year) sells points with a 100% bonus so why would you entertain the idea of getting a bonus that’s 25% – 35% lower?
  • The cheapest rate at which you can buy points in this sale is ~0.57 cents/point so as you have to put some effort into getting a good deal when IHG is selling points at just 0.5 cents each (unless you’re booking Six Senses properties) this isn’t a rate at which most should be buying.

a screenshot of a phone

  • It can sometimes be possible to ‘manufacture’ IHG Rewards points at a much cheaper price point by being a little sneaky during Points & Cash promotions (see here), so that’s another reason that paying ~0.57 cents/point probably isn’t a good move.
  • IHG has a history of devaluing IHG Rewards with little or no warning and while the pandemic appears to have made IHG think twice before taking any action so far this year, it would be unwise to buy points at a sub-optimal rate and then sit on them for any length of time.

Ok, if you desperately need a few thousand points so that you can book a big award trip for later this year then it’s probably fine to buy a few points in this sale…just make sure that you make your booking(s) sooner rather than later just in case there’s a sudden and unexpected change to IHG Rewards.

Everyone else should stay away and wait for IHG to bring back its 100% bonus (which it almost certainly will in the not too distant future).

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  1. I agree that you should only by IHG points with a 100% bonus. However, wherever I look, I see lots of opportunities to redeem points at higher than .5 cpp, with many approaching 1 cpp. I’m not sure whether this is a temporary phenomenon or something that will endure into the future.

  2. Unannounced IHG devaluation going on right now. The hotels that I booked last weeks are costing double the points right now

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