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Update 4/13/21: This promotion is returning again beginning for enrollment or renewal between April 15 and July 31, 2021. Enroll in the program during that window, complete one qualifying paid stay at an InterContinental, Kimpton, or Regent, by August 31, 2021 and get a free night certificate valid for one night at a hotel costing up to 40K points. The free night certificate expires 11/30/21. While this promo remains lukewarm, it could be of greater interest now that Intercontinental Ambassadors receive valuable benefits at Six Senses properties. More details in the updated post below. H/T: One Mile at a Time
Update 10/24/20: You now have until December 31, 2020 to purchase or renew your Ambassador membership for the first part of this deal.
IHG Rewards Club is offering a free night certificate which is good at properties charging up to 40,000 points per night when buying or renewing an Ambassador membership and staying once at an InterContinental, Kimpton or Regent property in the next few months. This has the potential for being a decent offer if you ever stay at InterContinental properties and can make use of the free night certificate by November 30, 2021.
- Buy or renew an Ambassador membership between April 15, 2021 and July 31, 2021 and stay once at select IHG brands by August 31, 2021 to get a free night certificate good at any property charging up to 40,000 points through November 30, 2021.
- Direct link to terms & conditions (see the ‘Ambassador Reward Night Enrollment & Renewal Offer’ section). Note that registration will be live on April 15, 2021.
- InterContinental Ambassadors who enroll in the program or renew their program membership between April 15, 2021 and July 31, 2021 and then complete one Qualifying Stay at InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, or Regent Hotels by 31 August 2021 will be awarded a Reward Night redeemable for a Reward Night priced at 40,000 points or less.
- The Reward Night will be deposited into the Free Nights section of the member’s account within 72 hours after check-out from the qualifying, paid stay and will be valid until 30 November 2021.
- This Reward Night is in addition to the complimentary weekend night that is already included as an InterContinental Ambassador member benefit.
- Ambassador benefits are not honored at Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants globally or at Regent Hotels & Resorts in Greater China.
- The Reward Night must be consumed by 30 April 2021 and cannot be extended or transferred. The number of points required for a Reward Night at IHG hotels varies by date, brand and individual hotel and is subject to availability. Taxes and fees apply and the member may be required to pay such taxes and fees even for a Reward Night. IHG Army Hotels, Mrs and Mrs Smith properties, and Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas are excluded from this Offer.
- This Offer is not valid for InterContinental Ambassador membership enrollments or renewals obtained on a complimentary basis or using the IHG Employee discount.
- Ambassador members must be within their standard renewal window in order to take advantage of this Offer.
- A Qualifying Stay is defined as a paid, minimum 1-night stay booked under a Qualifying Rate, with total spend exceeding US $30 per night.
- Reward Nights do not count as Qualifying Stays.
- A Stay is defined per IHG Rewards Club Membership Terms and Conditions as one night or consecutive nights at the same hotel, regardless of frequency of check-in/out.
- Only one room per member per Qualifying Stay will be eligible to earn the member a Reward Night under this Offer. If more than one member checks into the same room, only one member may use it as his or her Qualifying Stay for this Offer.
- No credit will be awarded for Stays completed prior to the member’s enrollment or renewal.
IHG hasn’t made this the most straightforward of promotions due to the various dates involved. First, you have to buy or renew an Ambassador membership between April 15, 2021 and July 31, 2021. You then have to complete a paid stay at an InterContinental, Kimpton or Regent property by August 31, 2021 in order to get a free night certificate that can be used at a property charging up to 40,000 points by November 30, 2021.
If you can complete all those steps, this could be a good offer. I say this could be a good offer because the 40k free night certificate comes at a cost. Not only do you have to book a paid stay at one of three brands – which incidentally are IHG’s most expensive brands for the most part – but you also have to pay $200 or 40,000 IHG Rewards Club points for the Ambassador membership.
Although the free night certificate could certainly be worth more than $200, I wouldn’t value it that highly due to the fact that spending $200 on a paid stay would earn you points, you could earn cashback by clicking through from a shopping portal and the fact that the certificate expires on April 30, 2020.
If you can make use of the benefits that come with Ambassador membership though (such as when Greg stayed at one in Austin), that makes the offer much more worthwhile. Note that Ambassador benefits are, for the most part, only applicable when staying at IHG’s InterContinental brand, so you can’t book a stay at a Crowne Plaza and expect Ambassador status to get you anything. Having said that, Ambassador status does come with corresponding Platinum status in the IHG Rewards Club program, so that could be used at Crowne Plaza (for as much use as status with IHG is which isn’t much).
IHG also updated the Ambassador program recently so that the weekend night certificate you get each year can now be used at Kimpton properties any day of the week – not just weekends.
So in summary, if you can make use of the benefits of Ambassador status and can easily meet the terms of this offer, it’s a decent deal. Otherwise, I wouldn’t go out of my way to spend $200 or 40,000 points for status and book a paid stay at one of three (generally expensive) IHG brands in order to get a free night certificate which expires in 9 months.
I received this offer, as well as a “Stay 2 times, receive a free night certificate”… wonder if i can join ambassador status and with 2 stays, receive free nights for both offers…. may give it a shot.
Any word if this can be paid for in hotel to help trigger $50 off $250 amex offer?
Hahaha nice try IHG.
No doubt. With the new pricing, we’d have no idea which hotels this free night certificate would still work at by the time we went to book it. Paying for this would be a total crapshoot.
Not getting suckered: renewing the free certificate comes at the cost of the highest rate for the first night, in some cases that can approach a $100 difference. I joined Ambassador initially because it was most useful in China (I got value out of it in Lijiang in Yunnan in 2019. Now that no one can go to China for the foreseeable future, the value isn’t there anymore.
I took advantage of this last year and haven’t stayed in an IC since for obvious reasons. I’m booked this weekend with a 40k cert at IC San Diego. We’ll see how they treat me.
I’ve got a Bogo stay booked in July at IC San Diego. I hope that would qualify me if I go for this again. I’ve noticed a lot of IC pricing at 41,000 or above points lately.
I’ve got a Kimpton in Boston booked with a 40k cert which is pricing above 40 if I booked it now. 40k ain’t what it used to be. I’ve got a decent stash of points and would like to burn it all at a nice IC and wash my hands of the program.
I still think the point that is missed on this is that they want you to pay to become an Ambassador member to give you a certificate that can’t be used at most IC or event most nights at Kimpton/Regent properties. I’d rather they just give me some points like 20k or really 40k.
I joined Intercontinental Ambassador and I won’t be joining again. It’s a complete waste of time and money. Neither the Ambassador membership nor IHG Platinum Elite offer any of the benefits that HiltonHHonors Gold Status does. No free breakfast, no club access….why bother? Nothing they offer is compelling enough to make a stay at an Intercontinental Hotel worth it.
[…] IHG: Buy/Renew Ambassador Membership Then Stay Once & Get 40k Free Night Certificate (Membership has to be purchased by 12/31/20) […]
[…] Update 10/25/20: You now have until December 31, 2021 to sign up for this deal. Certificate now expires April 30, 2021. Hat tip to FM […]
I took advantage of this in September. I was in Austin and the IC there was only $124 for the night so it didn’t cost much. BTW, December 1 the Austin hotel will no longer be IC branded so if you want a cheap stay, book it now.
I already used the BOGO cert to book 4th of July weekend at the IC in San Diego. It’s a great hotel and will have an awesome view of the fireworks.
I got to stay here for a night just before Covid hit for $99+tax on Hotwire. Happy I got to stay here once before it goes away, but honestly wasn’t all that impressed with the property.
Agree it was nothing spectacular but the location is great and it was a cheap way to get the promotion.
[…] in case there’s a little nugget of something noteworthy hidden away. Despite writing about InterContinental’s current promotion offering a free night certificate when buying Ambassador status, I missed a brand new benefit that […]
[…] coming up with the associated brand. These offers may be particularly appealing for some given the new deal for InterContinental Ambassador status that yields a 40K free night certificate with a paid stay by the end of January and given how the free weekend night cert (which can be used […]
does anyone know how this posts on the Citi Prestige cc in the hotel spending category ?
Can the qualifying stay before January be in conjunction with the weekend BOGO that comes with Ambassador status?
That’s something I’m not sure about. If I’m remembering correctly, you have to book a certain rate to use the weekend night certificate, so I don’t know if that’s qualifying or not.
From what I have read the weekend night certificate can be used only when in combination with a paid first night.
Yep, that’s correct with the weekend night that comes with Ambassador status as standard. This 40k certificate is different though and seems to be the same as the kind that comes with a couple of their credit cards, albeit with a shorter expiry date.
The paid first night must be at the “Ambassador Free Night Rate” and guess what: it’s the highest possible rate.
I know IHG has gone dynamic pricing on awards but historically IC properties don’t usually offer award nights below 50k, most of the time. Seems a bit weak.
The 40k certificate can be used at any property though, not just InterContinentals. Dynamic pricing has led to all ICs in the US being bookable with these certs though https://frequentmiler.com/ihg-40k-certificates-use-at-nearly-every-intercontinental-in-the-us/
Might be covid-related but I was able to get IC Los Angeles and San Diego for 40k per night, in the middle of August.