How to Use IHG Rewards Club Dining to Maximize Points [2017]

IHG Rewards Club Dining Program

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There are a number of ways IHG customers can earn some extra points, including capitalizing on dining. If you’re already going out to eat or ordering take-out, this method is pretty darned simple!

This article will walk you through everything you need to know about joining and utilizing the IHG Rewards Club Dining Program.

How to Sign up and Log in

To earn rewards points for dining experiences, customers must log in or join the program. This process just takes a quick couple of minutes to complete.

IHG Rewards Club Dining Program
Join with a couple of quick forms. Image courtesy of

If you are already an IHG Rewards Club member, you will still need to fill out few simple forms to join the dining program. Be sure to use the same name and email that’s on your IHG Rewards Club membership.

If you are not an IHG Rewards Club member, you will need to sign up (1 basic form) since you must enter your Rewards Club membership number to submit your other forms for the dining program.

The second quick form. Image courtesy of

Additionally, before your sign-up process can be finalized, IHG will ask you to provide a credit card to link to the program. There is no fee to join the program, and don’t worry—you can link more cards later.

Don’t miss the section below on which credit cards you should link to maximize your earnings in this program!

IHG Rewards Club Dining Program
Add a credit card to get started! Image courtesy of

Basics of Using the Program

There are 3 membership tiers within the IHG Rewards Club Dining Program. Depending on your tier, you’ll earn a different amount of points and be offered certain additional benefits when you dine.

IHG Rewards Club Dining Program
Dining Program Membership Tiers. Image courtesy of

You’ll see that simply by signing up to receive e-mails, you’re bumped up to earning 5 points per $1. If you dine 12+ times a year, you’re considered an elite member and can earn up to 8 points per $1.

IHG Rewards Club Dining Program
Search applicable restaurants to earn! Image courtesy of

To earn points when dining, the restaurant must also be an IHG Rewards Club Dining restaurant. You can easily search for these by city, state, zip code, or restaurant name.

You will then be presented with a list view, or you can choose a map view. A number of details are listed including neighborhood, member rating, average price of an entree, days of the week that rewards are applicable, and more.

IHG Rewards Club Dining Program
IHG Rewards Club Dining Restaurants in Dallas. Image courtesy of

Once you dine at a participating restaurant, be sure to pay with a card that is registered/linked with your IHG Rewards Club Dining Program. You’ll earn bonus points based on the cost of your meal, including tax and tip!

Remember, it may take up to 5 days after dining to view the transaction in your club account.

Each restaurant in the program earns the same ratio of points per dollar depending on your membership status.

Intro Bonuses

IHG Rewards Club Dining Program
Image courtesy of

At the time of this writing, IHG was offering a new member bonus of 1,000 points when you spend $30 within the first 30 days. Of course, you’ll need to pay with your linked card and complete an online review.

If you’re doing this solely for the points, this bonus isn’t especially lucrative. You can just as easily buy 1,000 points for $13.50 straight from the Buy Points section of the IHG Rewards Club website (at the time of this writing).

However, if you’re already planning to dine out at one of IHG’s participating restaurants, it’s not an awful way to earn 1,000 extra points!

Example Restaurants

As previously mentioned, each IHG Rewards Club Dining Restaurant earns the same ratio of points to spending. So, whether you spend $30 at a cafe or $30 at a fine dining location, you’ll receive the same number of points.

Regarding example restaurants: at the time of writing this article, a search of the Chicago area revealed 335 participating restaurants within 30 miles of the city center.

Most of these restaurants are smaller, local restaurants rather than chains, so the participating venues will vary quite a bit from city to city.

IHG Rewards Club Dining Program
Search for Chicago, IL Restaurants. Image courtesy of

Similarly, each city may have a vastly different number of participating merchants. For example, at the time of writing, Atlanta had 253 participating restaurants within 30 miles of the city center, while Boston had 243, San Diego had 168, and Dallas had 150.

While most participating restaurants are local spots, you’ll want to note the address in case there is a chain you’re interested in visiting (not every restaurant of the same name may be participating).

This is also applicable for the few regional or national chains you may find—check the address so you’re not disappointed!

Here are a couple of larger chain restaurants we saw listed in Chicago:

  • Fogo de Chão Brazilian Steakhouse
  • Edible Arrangements
  • Papa John’s
  • Buca di Beppo

Using Credit Cards to Earn Extra Points

You have several card options to link with the IHG Rewards Club dining program to help you earn even more IHG points.

IHG Rewards Club Select Credit Card

Chase provides the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card that earns IHG points directly. This card earns 2X points per dollar at restaurants and provides an annual free night certificate on your account anniversary.

If you link this card to the IHG Rewards Club dining program, you will earn these 2X points for using the card in addition to points earned from the dining program.

Chase Ultimate Rewards Cards

Using a card that earns Chase Ultimate Rewards can also help boost your account since you can transfer Chase points to the IHG Rewards Club. A couple of these cards even include restaurants as a bonus category.

Recommended Chase Cards (Personal)

💳 Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

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> Use Bonus Points To Fly To Hawaii (2 People, Round-Trip)
  • 50,000 bonus points.
  • That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through
    Chase Ultimate Rewards.
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide.
  • $0 foreign transaction fees
  • Annual Fee: $0 the first year, then $95
💳 Chase Freedom Unlimited®
  • Earn $150 bonus
  • Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - it's automatic.
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Convert your cash-back to points if you also have the
    Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card!
💳 Chase Sapphire Reserve℠

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  • 50,000 bonus points
  • 3X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
  • Annual Fee: $450

Recommended Chase Cards (Business)

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card
  • Earn 3 points per $1 in select categories
Chase Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
  • Earn 5% cash back in select business categories

Final Thoughts

By joining the IHG Rewards Club Dining program and linking a couple of credit cards, you can earn some easy IHG points!

If you’re already dining out, why not earn a few extra points on your burger and that pint of beer? Grabbing take-out? You might even earn extra IHG points at your favorite Thai place.

Plus, if you pair your IHG Rewards Program membership with a credit card that earns a category bonus on dining, you’re earning points on top of points!

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

9 best ways to use 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points (E.g. Fly 2 People To Hawaii, Round-Trip!

And – discover 10 of the most valuable benefits you’ll get access to as a cardholder

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