Recently, we learned that IHG Rewards would be making some changes to its loyalty program in the coming months. Now, we’ve received word that the 2 current IHG Rewards credit cards are getting a makeover, along with a new card that is set to be launched alongside them.
Here’s everything we know so far:
Changes to IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card
As of March 24, 2022, the IHG Premier card will see its annual fee increase from $89 to $99, though the card will be improving drastically as well.
In addition to earning the same 10x points per $1 spent on IHG stays, you’ll also earn:
- 5x points per $1 spent on travel purchases (up from 1x)
- 5x points per $1 spent on dining and gas station purchases (up from 2x)
- 3x points per $1 spent on all other purchases (up from 1x)
Increased earning rates aren’t the only changes to the card, though.
When you register your IHG Premier card with your United MileagePlus account, you’ll receive $50 in United TravelBank credit each year. This added benefit alone will more than cover the $10 increase in the card’s annual fee.
Even more exciting, though, is that your annual free night certificates will be more useful! While they will still be capped at 40,000 points per night, you’ll soon be able to cover the difference in award price using points in your account. In order words, if a hotel costs 70,000 points per night, you can redeem your free night certificate plus 30,000 points to book a night.
Hot Tip: For inspiration, check out our post on the best places to redeem an IHG Rewards free night certificate for maximum value.
To encourage spending on the card, you’ll also be able to earn 10,000 bonus points and a $100 statement credit after spending $20,000 on the card in a calendar year, and IHG Rewards Diamond Elite status (formerly Spire Elite) after spending $40,000 on the card in a calendar year.
Fortunately, every other current card benefit will continue to exist. Given that there are plenty of benefits being added for just $10 more per year, this is a massive win in our book!
Moreover, as of today, the welcome bonus on the card will be increasing to 125,000 bonus points, plus a free night certificate, after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. This is up from the standard 125,000 point offer.
Changes to IHG® Rewards Traveler Credit Card
The no-annual-fee IHG Traveler card isn’t quite as exciting as its higher-end counterpart, but it, too, is getting a boost in value.
Starting March 24, 2022, the card will earn points at the following rates:
- 3x points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations and dining (up from 2x)
- 3x points per $1 spent on utilities, internet, cable, phone, and select streaming services purchases (up from 1x)
- 2x points per $1 spent on all other purchases (up from 1x)
Beyond that, you’ll receive automatic IHG Rewards Silver Elite status, and have the ability to earn IHG Rewards Gold Elite status after spending $20,000 on the card in a calendar year. Cardholders will also earn 10,000 bonus points after spending $10,000 in a calendar year.
New IHG® Rewards Premier Business Credit Card
We’ve now learned what IHG’s new business card, set to launch on March 24, 2022, will look like.
Starting with the earn rates, the IHG Premier Business card will earn:
- Up to 26x points per $1 on IHG stays
- 5x points per $1 on travel, gas stations, select advertising, and restaurants
- 3x points per $1 on all other purchases
The card will come with a $99 annual fee, but also with a handful of benefits — many of which are similar to the personal version of the card.
Cardholders will receive complimentary IHG Platinum Elite status, with the opportunity to spend their way to Diamond Elite status by spending $40,000 on the card in a calendar year.
Speaking of spending thresholds, you’ll also earn 10,000 bonus points and $100 statement credit after spending $20,000 on the card in a calendar year.
Of course, like the personal IHG Premier card, you’ll receive an annual free night certificate that can be used at a hotel costing up to 40,000 points per night. Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to earn a second free night certificate after spending 60,000 on the card in a calendar year.
Beyond that, you’ll get your fourth night free on award stays, a Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit, and $50 in United TravelBank cash each year when you link your card to your United TravelBank.
Again, while there are a lot of overlapping benefits between the new business card and the personal IHG Premier card, we’d call the new business card a win in our books.
Even if you aren’t sure how many of the cards other benefits you’ll use, $99 for a 40,000 point free night certificate, plus $50 in United TravelBank cash, is certainly a worthwhile trade to us!
What About the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card?
For those still holding the discontinued IHG Select card, you’ll likely be wondering if any changes are coming to this card. Currently, we don’t have anything to report on that front, though we will provide an update if/when that changes.
While we still don’t know everything about the new IHG Rewards program, this round of changes to its co-branded credit cards is very promising.
Each of the cards is improving its value proposition, and the upcoming launch of the business card is likely to be a hit with award travelers. And finally, the annual free night certificates will become markedly more flexible and valuable going forward!
The information regarding the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.