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Is the IHG Premier Credit Card Annual Fee Worth It for Your Specific Travel Goals?

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Is the IHG Premier Credit Card Annual Fee Worth It for Your Specific Travel Goals?

Alex CurtisIs the IHG Premier Credit Card Annual Fee Worth It for Your Specific Travel Goals?Million Mile Secrets Team

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INSIDER SECRET:   This card can stretch your points 25% further.  I’ll show you how!

With up to a 80,000 IHG point welcome bonus after meeting minimum spending requirements, anyone who stays at IHG hotels should be HIGHLY curious about the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card.

But because this card has an $89 annual fee, it’s natural to wonder:   Is the IHG Premier Credit Card annual fee worth it?  For many folks, the card is well worth keeping year after year, just for the terrific perks it comes with.

Use your free night anniversary certificate to stay near Disney World for free!  This is just one of the many benefits that can make the IHG Premier credit card annual fee worth it for you

Let’s break down the best perks of this card so you can tell if this card is worth the annual fee for YOU.

Is the IHG Premier Credit Card Annual Fee Worth It?

Apply Here:   IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card

Read our IHG Credit Card review

The IHG Rewards Club Premier offers a welcome bonus of 80,000 bonus IHG points after spending $2,000 on purchases in the first three months of account opening.

This card has an annual fee of $89.  But, with the many benefits that this card has, the annual fee is well worth paying for many if you can take advantage of the perks!

Stay up to 10 Nights at an IHG Hotel With the IHG Premier Welcome Bonus

The IHG Rewards Club Premier offers a 4th free night perk on award stays.  When you book an award stay of 4+ nights, you’ll get the 4th award night free!  You don’t need to pay upfront for the 4th night, so any award stay lasting 4 days will only cost you the points for 3 nights.  This is an awesome perk that helps your points stretch even further.

IHG award stays start at just 10,000 IHG points per night, which means for as little as 30,000 points you can stay for 4 nights at some IHG hotels.  This means you could stretch the welcome bonus to up to 10 nights of award stays (2 stays of 4 nights each = 80,000 points – 20,000 points for 2 free nights = just 60,000 points!).

Free Night Stay Each Year

Each year when you renew your card, you will earn a free night certificate.  You can redeem it at any IHG hotel that costs 40,000 IHG Points or less, and it expires 12 months after it is issued.

For most folks, this one benefit alone is worth the annual fee of the card.  Most of these hotel stays are worth more than the $89 annual fee, making it an easy choice to keep paying the annual fee and taking all the other card benefits as the cherry on top.

Don’t let the 40,000 IHG point limit bother you, because there are plenty of great IHG hotels that are within this limit.  I stayed at the InterContinental Hotel Saigon, which is a 5-star hotel in downtown Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam for free with an annual free night certificate (it costs 35,000 IHG points per night).

Enjoy Elite Status Just by Keeping the Card Open

Just for keeping this card open you will earn automatic Platinum IHG Status.  There is no minimum spending to achieve this perk.

Platinum Elite Status benefits include:

  • Complimentary room upgrades (subject to availability)
  • Guaranteed room availability (given 72 hours notice)
  • Extended check-out (when available)
  • Priority check-in
  • Complimentary internet
  • Welcome amenity
  • IHG points never expire
  • 50% bonus earnings on top of base points
  • 2 free Amazon Kindle ebooks per quarter
  • …and more
With Platinum Elite Status, you can get upgraded to an enhanced room for free, like a room with a premium view

I like knowing that just keeping this card open (and paying the annual fee) allows you these benefits at IHG hotels.  There are also some fun resort-specific benefits not mentioned above, like the $10 raid the bar and $30 in-room spa credits available at Kimpton hotels.

Speed Through Security & Customs With Global Entry (or TSA PreCheck)

The IHG Rewards Club Premier offers a Global Entry ($100) or TSA PreCheck ($85) statement credit once every 4 years to enable you to enjoy the benefits of these security programs at no additional cost for you.  While this is a benefit found on many cards, we usually see this perk on premium travel cards that have annual fees of  ~$400+.

In fact, the application fee for Global Entry is $100 (what I recommend applying for, because it also includes TSA PreCheck), which is more than a single annual fee of $89 on this card!  There is no obligation to keep this card for a full 4 years to get it again, so this benefit can really make sense for folks looking to cover a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee with a credit card.

Bottom Line

Is the IHG Rewards Club Premier annual fee worth it?  If you like IHG hotels, absolutely!

The free night certificate that you earn every cardholder anniversary is almost always worth more than the $89 annual fee that this card charges, making this one benefit alone worth having this card.

Folks who stay at IHG hotels even once or twice a year can get terrific value from the IHG Rewards Club Premier while paying the annual fee.  It’s a keeper!  You can learn more about this card by reading:

And you can learn more about IHG hotels here:

What’s your favorite IHG Rewards Club Premier perk?  Let me know in the comments, and subscribe to our newsletter for more helpful posts like this:

IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card

IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card

  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after spending $2,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Enjoy a Free Night after each account anniversary year at eligible IHG hotels worldwide. Plus, enjoy a free reward night when you redeem points for any stay of 4 or more nights
  • Earn 25 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants. Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Platinum Elite status as long as you remain a Premier card member
  • Global Entry or TSA Pre✓® Fee Credit of up to $100 every 4 years as reimbursement for the application fee charged to your card
  • IHG Rewards Club Bonus points are redeemable at hotels such as InterContinental®, Crowne Plaza®, Kimpton®, EVEN® Hotels, Indigo® Hotels & Holiday Inn®

More Info

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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Only couple of days left to book uncapped night from old ihg credit card. I just booked the a night in July. Last chance.

Make sure you book before May 1

I have the “old” IHG card. Am I eligible for the new card–and get the 80,000 IHG points after meeting the required spend?

I got both.

Yes, it’s considered a different card product, so folks with the old IHG card can still apply.

We still have the original IHG Mastercard which was $49 and gave a great sign on bonus, as well as a free night each year. We know the value of this free night has diminished now, but we still plan on keeping these cards (until we are told we cant!). We plan on getting the new ones too and each getting our own card so we both get the full bonus.

Great plan! My wife and I each apply for great offers to earn multiple bonuses, too!