You can now register for “The Big Win” 2014 promotion from IHG Rewards Club.
IHG Rewards Club (formerly Priority Club) is one of the largest hotel loyalty programs. There are over 4,600 InterContinental Hotels Group hotels around the world. Emily and I stayed at the Inter-Continental Thalasso in Bora Bora on our second honeymoon.
With some Big Win offers, you have to complete lots of different tasks to get “The Big Win” bonus. So it’s not the most lucrative promotion or one that’s mattress run worthy. But some offers are quite lucrative.
A “mattress run” is when you book a cheap night at a hotel not because you need a place to sleep for the night!
But because you need to get elite status credit in a hotel’s loyalty program, or to earn extra hotel points, or to complete a promotion like “The Big Win” which requires you to stay a certain number of nights in a hotel.
That said, “The Big Win” could be lucrative, if you already have hotel stays planned at IHG Rewards hotels. Or if you get a very good offer!
You can earn at least 20,000 points or more with IHG Rewards’ “The Big Win” promotion up to April 30, 2014. Emily’s targeted offer was for 121,600 points (more details later!)
You get a customized list of tasks to complete based on your IHG hotel stay history. If you complete all the tasks, you “Win Big” at the end and get bonus points.
Regardless of your offer, you earn at least 1,000 extra points when you stay at any IHG hotel.
New Member Offer
The default offer for new members is 34,000 points. We tested this with an account for a new member.
- 1,000 Points – “One night win” – Stay at any IHG hotel
- 2,000 Points – “Book with IHG” – Book 2 separate stays through an IHG hotel website or mobile device
- 3,000 Points – “Stay more and earn” – Stay 3 nights at IHG hotels
- 3,000 Points – “Change your view” – Stay at 2 Holiday Inn hotels
- 7,000 Points - “Explore our brands” – Stay at 3 different IHG hotels
- 8,000 Points – “Win in a weekend” – Stay 3 Saturday nights
- 10,000 Points - “Win big” – Complete 5 of the offers
You’ll earn 34,000 points if you complete all of the tasks. This isn’t a particularly great offer in my opinion.
My Personal Offer
My personalized offer was for 76,00 points, but Emily’s offer was for 121,600 points. I stayed at more IHG Rewards hotels than Emily last year, so IHG Rewards is assuming that I don’t need an incentive to stay in their hotels and is giving me a lower targeted offer.
But they’re wrong since I’ll book all our IHG Rewards hotel stays from Emily’s account.
We’d have to pay for 5 nights to get the full 121,600 points. We’d have to stay at least 5 nights, but can split them into 2 weekend visits at 2 different Holiday Inn brands + 1 extra night.
- 12,600 Points - “Stay more and earn” - Stay 5 nights at IHG hotels
- 14,400 Points - “Explore our brands” - Stay at 2 different IHG hotels
- 2,300 Points - “Spend it to get it” - Book & pay for 1 stay with the IHG Rewards card
- 7,200 Points - “IHG mobile app booking” - Book 2 separate stays with the IHG mobile app
- 100 points – “Survey the win” – Complete a survey
- 12,000 Points - “Win in a weekend” - Stay 2 Saturday nights
- 12,000 Points - “Change your view” - Stay at 2 Holiday Inn hotels
- 61,000 Points - “Win big” - Complete 7 of the offers
I value IHG Rewards points at about 0.5 to 0.6 cents per point, so I’d value these 121,600 points at:
- $608 (121,600 points X 0.5 cents for 1 IHG Rewards point) to
- ~$730 (121,600 points X 0.6 cents for 1 IHG Rewards point)
Let’s say that Emily and I complete our Big Win by staying 2 weekends at 2 different Holiday Inn hotels & 1 night at another IHG hotel.
Our total out of pocket cost for 5 nights is ~$500 (5 nights X $100 per night). But we will get 121,600 IHG Rewards points which are worth $608 to $730!
Count me in!
Worth it or Not?
Top-tier InterContinental hotels cost 30,000 to 50,000 points, whereas Holiday Inn Express and Holiday Inns go for 10,000 to 25,000 points a night.
Let’s say you get the base offer for 34,000 points.
34,000 points would get you 1 night at the Holiday Inn Express New York City Fifth Avenue and you’d have 4,000 points leftover!
You can buy 34,000 IHG Rewards Club points, directly from IHG Rewards, for 0.115 cents each. So 34,000 points would cost $391 (34,000 points X 1.15 cents per point).
But you can also buy Priority Club points for 0.7 cents using the Cash & Points Trick, so 34,000 points is worth $238 (34,000 points X 0.7 cents per point).
To get 34,000 points, from “The Big Win,” you have to stay at 3 different IHG hotels (2 Holiday Inns + 1 other IHG hotel).
This could make sense if you have to book stays up to April 2014. But it likely doesn’t make sense to book a hotel which you don’t need just for the points!
On the other hand, you could get a very lucrative offer where it could make sense to book a cheap hotel room just for the points.
You can also earn airline miles instead of hotel points. But you earn 500 miles for every 10,000 IHG hotel points. So a new IHG Rewards member who completed all their Big Win tasks would earn 1,500 airline miles for 30,000 IHG Rewards points.
Stacking IHG Rewards Promotions
Don’t forget that you can earn lots of extra points for each paid IHG Rewards stay. That’s because you can register for a lot of promotions and earn thousands of extra points for each stay.
See this post by Bart Lapers for more information on how to stack IHG Rewards promotions.
Using IHG Points
IHG Rewards points can be transferred to several airlines at a 5:1 ratio. This is not a good deal and is an expensive way to earn miles.
But using the points for hotel stays can be a good value. Here’s IHG Reward’s award chart which start as low as 5,000 points for a PointsBreak award and cost 50,000 points for a top-end InterContinental hotel.
Emily & I stayed at the InterContinental Thalasso in Bora Bora for 50,000 points a night!
Terms & Conditions
You will earn points for eligible stays completed between January 1, 2014 and April 30, 2014.
An eligible stay usually means that it has to be a paid cash rate on the IHG website for it to count towards the Big Win promotion. Discounted IHG Friends & Family rate & award nights do NOT count towards the Big Win promotion. And rooms booked on Orbitz, hotels.com etc. do not count towards the promotion.
You have to register for the promotion before you complete any stays. Here’s a link to the complete Terms & Conditions.
IHG Rewards’ “The Big Win” promotion is tailored to your IHG stay history.
This means that you could earn more points based on how many times you’ve stayed at IHG hotels last year or based on your elite status with IHG.
Some targeted offers are worth pursuing, but not all of them will be lucrative. So do the math before deciding whether to take part in the Big Win for 2014!
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