16 Best Ways to Earn Lots of IHG Rewards Club Points

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As one of the largest hotel loyalty programs in the world, IHG Rewards Club allows members to earn points for stays at more than 5,000 IHG properties. These points can be redeemed for free hotel stays, flights, and other awards.

Read on to learn our strategies for maximizing your IHG points so you can quickly build up your balance. After all, the more points you accrue, the better redemptions you will qualify for!

The IHG Rewards Club Program

IHG Rewards Club Program
Earn points and redeem them for a variety of travel awards with IHG Rewards Club!

1. Join IHG Rewards Club

Sign up for the IHG Rewards Club to start earning points immediately. In fact, if you enroll during your stay, you get an automatic 1,000 points for that stay!

You can also enroll for free on the IHG Rewards Club site or by contacting the service center. Then earn 5-10 base points per $1 for future hotel stays depending on the property, including 600, 1,300 points, or 2,000 points at ANA partner hotels.

The chart below shows how many points you can earn per $1 spent at each hotel:

ihg rewards club earning structure
Earn 5-10 points per $1 for stays at participating IHG hotels.

You’ll earn points for charges to your room such as food, drinks, laundry, and in-room movies, even if staying on a rewards night redemption!

It takes 2-4 weeks to receive your permanent IHG Rewards Club card, but you can print the temporary card right away. Points won’t expire as long as you redeem or earn more within 12 months.

2. Select Points or Miles

Do you prefer to earn airline miles whenever possible? Then you’re in luck! Simply choose miles as your earning preference!

It’s simple to switch back and forth if you change your mind; just make sure the name on your frequent flyer account matches the name on your IHG Rewards Club account.

Unfortunately, you can’t convert airline miles to IHG Rewards Club points. However, you can transfer blocks of IHG Rewards Club points to participating frequent flyer loyalty programs.

3. Get IHG Credit Card Sign-up Points

The IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card helps you accrue IHG Rewards Club points. It even comes with a sign-up bonus to get you started! Plus, you earn 10 points per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel.

4. Credit Card Bonus Categories

Make purchases with the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card to earn points. For instance, earn:

  • 10 points per $1 spent at IHG Hotels
  • 2 points per $1 spent at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants
  • 1 point per $1 for everything else

5. IHG Rewards Club Elite Status

ihg rewards club elite status tiers
You get additional benefits when you have elite status with IHG Rewards Club, including earning additional bonus points for your stays!

IHG Rewards Club members start out at Club status…unless you have the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card. With this card, you get automatic Platinum Elite status (and all the benefits!) for as long as you are a cardmember.

Using your IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card is a great way to keep your points from expiring. Because you get automatic Platinum Elite status, your points won’t expire as long as you have the card!

The table below shows the bonus for each status as well as how to qualify:

LevelBonusQualifying Pts.Qualifying Nights
Gold Elite10%10,00010
Platinum Elite50%40,00040
Spire Elite

Spire Elite status comes with a host of great perks. One of the best is being able to pick a Choice Benefit. The 2 options are 25,000 bonus points, or gifting Platinum status to another member!

What an incredible opportunity! Once you qualify for Spire Elite status, you can select a benefit immediately by logging in to your account at ihg.com/rewardsclub.

With all the bonus points and points rebates at your disposal, it can really add up:

  • 2x-10x points for using the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
  • 5x-10x points for being an IHG Rewards Club member
  • 10%-100% status bonus

Hot Tip: Rewards Nights count toward elite status, so you earn points toward achieving a higher status while enjoying your free night!

6. Join the Ambassador Program

There’s actually another way to get elite status in the IHG Rewards Club. Join Ambassador for $200 and you’ll get automatic status plus 5,000 bonus points, a certificate for a free weekend night, and more!

Transfer Chase Points to IHG Rewards Club

7. Chase Ultimate Rewards Credit Cards

Chase Ultimate Rewards is the only credit card loyalty program that partners with IHG Rewards Club. That means you can transfer Ultimate Rewards points to IHG Rewards Club points at a 1:1 ratio, starting at 1,000 points.

Remember, Chase points are VERY easy to earn, so this is a great option. Plus, Chase has many airline and hotel transfer partners which makes these points even more valuable.

Recommended Chase Cards (Personal)

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card - This is our favorite beginners travel card that earns valuable points and it comes with a big 60,000 sign up bonus (highest ever & valued at $750), after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. The annual fee is $95.
Chase Freedom Unlimited® - A simple, no annual fee card that earns you 1.5% cash back on all purchases. A good card to get after the Sapphire Preferred because then you can transfer your cash-back into points (which is how you maximize value).
Chase Sapphire Reserve® - This is a premium travel rewards card with a higher annual fee, but it'll get you into a lot of airport lounges (Priority Pass). The current sign up bonus is 50,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. You'll also get a $300 travel credit per year which wipes away a big chunk of the $450 annual fee.

Recommended Chase Cards (Business)

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card - This is our #1 recommended business card and comes with a whopping 80,000 sign up bonus after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening. This bonus is worth $1,000. You can earn lots of points by leveraging the cards bonus categories.
Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card - earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening. In addition, get up to 5% cash back on a range of business expenses. A simple, $0 annual fee card.

8. Diners Club International Credit Card

IHG Rewards Club Diners Club International
Diners Club International is also an IHG Rewards Club transfer partner.

Do you have a bunch of Diners Club International points burning a hole in your pocket? You can convert your Club Rewards points to IHG Rewards Club points in no time! Then, you’ll be that much closer to your next redemption!

IHG Rewards Club Travel Partners

9. Rent a Car With Hertz

Need a rental car? Consider Hertz, an IHG Rewards Club partner that offers 125 points per day on your rental.

Provide your IHG Rewards Club membership number and use the discount code CDP 22754 when making a reservation.

Periodically, Hertz offers discounts and double-points specials for IHG members, so keep an eye on the IHG website for new deals.

10. Book a Ride With GroundLink

IHG Rewards Club GroundLink
Every time you book a ride with GroundLink, you could earn 500 IHG Rewards Club points.

GroundLink will give you 500 IHG Rewards Club points when you book a ride. They have locations all over the country offering one-way and hourly rides.

Other Opportunities To Earn Points

11. IHG Rewards Club Promotions

IHG Rewards Club posts special deals online throughout the year for members. These member offers include additional bonus points for stays, double bonus points, and discounts.

earn point with ihg rewards club offers
You can earn bonus points for various offers that IHG may put out from time to time. Check in periodically to see what is available!

12. IHG Rewards Club Dining

Earn points for dining out when you enroll in the IHG Rewards Club Dining Program. Choose from more than 10,000 restaurants around the country!

You can join for free and register with a credit or debit card. You’ll earn 1,000 bonus points for spending $30 or more at a participating restaurant and completing an online review.

Then earn up to 8 IHG Rewards Club points per $1 depending on your membership level!

13. Protect the Environment

Bet you didn’t know you can earn IHG Rewards Club by conserving water and energy!

That’s right! Earn 500 points by turning down housekeeping services at participating hotels. You must stay at least 2 consecutive nights to qualify.

14. IHG Meeting Rewards

IHG Rewards Club Meeting Rewards
Add more points to your IHG Rewards Club balance by joining the Meetings Rewards program.

Become a meeting planner with IHG Meeting Rewards and earn points for hosting qualifying events.

You’ll earn 3 points for each $1 spent on meeting space, food, beverages, and even guest rooms.

Host 1 event to become a Gold Elite member (10% elite point bonus) or 2 events to become a Platinum Elite member (50% elite point bonus).

15. Purchase Discount IHG Points

Are you close to an award but still need more points to make it? You may be able to buy IHG points at a discount.

Every so often IHG Rewards Club offers targeted promotions to members. For example, you may be able to take advantage of a 100% bonus, making 26,000-60,000 points available for 0.575 cents each!

16. Transfer IHG Points to Another Member

IHG Rewards Club Share Miles
Share points with a family member to help them qualify for a redemption.

IHG Rewards Club permits you to transfer your points to another member, or have them transfer points to you! Best of all, there is no limit. You must transfer in 1,000 point increments, and there is a $5 fee per 1,000 points.


Wow! Credit card bonuses, elite status bonuses, transfers, and so much more. IHG really does offer tons of way to earn IHG Rewards Club points!

Select an IHG hotel and book a room to begin earning points to spend on free hotel stays, room upgrades, and unique digital rewards.

How to Earn Lots of Chase Ultimate Rewards Points >

Photo Credits:
Hotel Indigo (IHG Hotel Brand) Featured Photo:  Khajonwit Somsri/Shutterstock.com
Children on Tabliet: bikeriderlondon/Shutterstock.com

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Best Ways to Earn IHG Points


How does the IHG Rewards Club work?

IHG Rewards Club is a free hotel loyalty program. Members earn points for staying at participating hotels as well as making purchases from travel and non-travel partners.

How many points can I earn per stay?

Earn 10 points per $1 spent at all Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo, Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn Express hotels, and InterContinental Hotels & Resorts.

Earn 5 points per $1 spent at all Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites.

Earn 600, 1,300, or 2,000 points per stay at ANA partner hotels.

With elite status, earn bonus points for your stays too. Plus, if you use the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card, you’ll earn 10 points per $1 on top of other earnings!

Can I earn miles instead of points?

Yes, you can choose to earn miles instead of points for hotel stays.

How long does it take for points to post to my IHG Rewards Club account?

Expect points to post to your account within 7 business days.

How can I keep track of my IHG Rewards Club points?

You will receive an IHG Rewards Club eStatement bi-monthly. You also have access to your account online.

Which hotels are included in the IHG Rewards Club points program?

Is there an IHG Rewards Club credit card?

Yes, the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card provides automatic Platinum Elite status.

It also earns 10 points per $1 spent at IHG Hotels, 2 points per $1 spent at gas stations, grocey stores, and restaurants, and 1 point per $1 spent on everything else purchased with the card.

When do IHG Rewards Club points expire?

Your IHG Rewards Club points will expire if there is no activity on the account for 12 months. Just earn or redeem once a year to keep current.

If you have the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card you’ll receive automatic Platinum Elite status, and your points will not expire as long as you have the credit card account.

What is Spire Elite Status?

You can earn Spire Elite status with a minimum of 75 nights, or 75,000 elite qualifying points in a calendar year.

Although Spire Elite status comes with many perks (including 100% bonus points), one of the best benefits is the Choice Benefit program. Spire Elite members can select either 25,000 bonus points or gift Platinum Elite status to another member!

Can I earn a Choice Benefit every year?

Yes, you earn a Choice Benefit every year that you qualify for Spire Elite status.

Jennifer Koebele

About Jennifer Koebele

Jennifer ("Jen") is a self-proclaimed travel geek. Her favorite spot to relax is the beautiful resort town of Interlaken, Switzerland, which she first visited as a toddler. The Alpine city of Annecy, France is a close second. There's nothing Jen loves more than discovering (and writing about) how to find a good bargain.

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  1. wesley wilson · March 18, 2018 · Reply

    It has become increasingly harder to find any IHG Resort Hotels that will allow you to use IHG points to pay for a room. I have even had a IHG hotel that had many rooms available deny me the option of using reward points to pay for the room. Their reasoning was they only had a few rooms that points could be used as payment, and those rooms were taken. With nearly 1 million points, I’m doing good to get an upgraded room. Not feelin’ the love!

  2. Mister Estrada · August 7, 2018 · Reply

    I have been a IHG Platinum Eilte member for 18 months and noticed hotels increasing the amount of points required to stay and even some hotels, like the Holiday Inn Resorts disappearing from the annual Free Reward Night list when trying to book your free night night. You need to accumulate and use your points quickly or the depreciation factor will render your points useless since last year’s 10,000 point hotel is now going for 15,000 or 20,000. I now have the new IHG black card…Premier Club, we’ll see if anything changes… or I’ll just have to switch to another hotel group credit card… nice post by the way….

    • Michael McHugh · August 16, 2018 · Reply

      Thanks for this info Mister Estrada!

      • Lucienne CHU · October 7, 2018 · Reply

        Hi team,

        I just joined the IHG programme online and am still waiting for my IHG Card to be posted out to my home address . I am going to visit China soon and already booked three nights at Crowne Plaza Foshan . My enquiry : how can I earn the IHG points as I don’t have the card yet ? If I show my online IHG membership number to the Crowne Plaza when I arrive there, would they allocate the points I earn with this booking ? Or do I have to print out the temporary card to record the nights? I will then visit other cities in China. I am sure I can easily pass the 10 nights required during this trip .
        Hence your advice is really appreciated. Thank you and cheers.


        • Christine Krzyszton · October 7, 2018 · Reply

          Hi Lucienne! Fortunately you do not need your physical IHG membership card to receive credit for your upcoming stays. If you call IHG, they can add your membership number to your reservations. Their phone number is 1(800) 621-0555. You could also email them. It is possible to add it at the hotel but it is best to do it in advance as you will then be able to access all of your reservations online in your account and assure you receive credit. Be sure to have your membership number with you during your trip in case the hotel does not have it on the reservation and check your statement when you check in/out to make sure your IHG membership is on it. I hope your trip goes well.

  3. Terry R Wood · June 10, 2019 · Reply

    I have been an IHG Rewards member for 15 years. It was my go-to when traveling on business. Unfortunately something has gone wrong here. Points are practically worthless now. I still have the IHG rewards credit card and I do get an “free” anniversary night for the $89 annual membership fee but there is really no other benefit anymore. Over the last several years it has cost me more to stay loyal to IHG. Today I am trying to book a room in Salt Lake City, just as someone off the street a standard room can be had for $97.22. For me to stay with points would cost me 30,000 points. I recently loaded up for the year on points like I usually do when I am sent an offer to purchase, but to buy 30,000 points cost me $172.50. I do have the option to split the bill by paying cash and buying points. I can get that same standard room for 15,000 points (which cost me $94.50) plus $105.00 cash.
    Someone has let this ship go astray???

    • Christine Krzyszton · June 10, 2019 · Reply

      Hello Terry and thanks for your comment. You are using a very specific example and in the case you mention, it would be better to pay cash for the room. As you are probably aware, being a long term IHG Rewards member, even with the increase in redemption costs, it is still possible to find great value using your points. A night at the Intercontinental Paris Le Grand, for example, can be secured for 70,000 IHG points but can cost $700 per night to pay cash. The Intercontinental in San Juan, for 50,000 IHG points, can run $350 or more per night. PointBreaks specials have even allowed me to secure a Holiday Inn Express in Madrid for 5,000 points per night. Also, sometimes purchasing points is not always the best value. During promotions you can pick up 100,000 points for $500 which does bring the cost down somewhat but even then, it does not always make sense without a specific redemption in mind that will maximize the value. Thousands of points can also be earned for no additional cost during a promotion such as Accelerate. So yes, while there are plenty of situations where using points is not a good deal, like the one you mention, there are still plenty of great reward redemption options to be found with IHG points.

  4. Hi, has anybody recently stayed at an IHG property in Greater China (Mainland, HK, Taiwan)? If so, did you have a choice of either Points or a Drink voucher as welcome amenity gift? I was told today by the Intercontinental Xiamen that Points are no longer offered in Greater China as a welcome amenity gift. Any recent experience proving that statement right (or wrong)?

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