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Around a month ago, we were given a heads up that IHG was about to launch a new promotion to try to encourage members to renew their InterContinental Ambassador membership. Since then, however, there doesn’t appear to have been any official announcement of the promotion (at least not one that I’ve seen) and, even though the promotion is now live, it would be very easy for someone to not realize that a promotion is running when they go to renew their membership.
My InterContinental Ambassador membership was extended at the end of April so it now runs through to the end of October and, unusually (because I’m not within 60 days of my renewal date), I can now see the cost to renew my InterContinental Ambassador membership online. This is what I’m being shown:
That’s it. There’s nothing else of interest on the renewal page and certainly nothing to indicate that there’s a renewal promotion running…but there is.
On the InterContinental Ambassador terms and conditions page, the promotion is referenced in the contents…
…and if you delve into the details, all the information is there (bolding is mine):
InterContinental® Ambassadors who enrol in the program or renew their program membership between July 30, 2020 – November 15, 2020 and then complete one Qualifying Stay at InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton® Hotels & Restaurants, or Regent® Hotels by January 31, 2021 will be awarded a Reward Night redeemable for a Reward Night priced at 40,000 points or less. The Reward Night will be deposited into the Free Nights section of the member’s account within 72 hours after check-out from the qualifying, paid stay and will be valid until April 30, 2021. This Reward Night is in addition to the complimentary weekend night that is already included as an InterContinental Ambassador member benefit.
Renewal + one night at an InterContinental, Kimpton, or Regent property = a free night worth 40,000 points.
How valuable a promotion this is will depend on three things:
- How cheaply you can book a 1-night stay at a participating property (assuming you don’t already have a stay planned).
- What level of property you can book for 40,000 (thanks to dynamic award pricing there are some very nice properties available for 40,000 points…but only at quieter times).
- If you can make use of the free night before it expires at the end of April 2021.
I’m still weighing up my options here because although I know I could probably book a very nice property near one of my home bases…
…I’m not sure I’ll be able to find a suitably cheap rate at an InterContinental or Kimpton property (there aren’t any Regent properties near me) to make this worthwhile. At the moment, this is a work in progress for me.
InterContinental Ambassador status became noticeably more valuable in the past couple of months as IHG first made the free weekend night benefit available at Kimpton properties (midweek and at weekends) and then extended InterContinental Ambassador benefits to Regent properties too. In light of the current state of travel, however, a lot of people will still be questioning if they should renew their membership for another year and while the free night promotion probably won’t be enough to sway a significant number of minds, it’s strange that IHG hasn’t highlighted this offer prominently on the Ambassador renewals page.