IHG credit cards: Earn 150,000 bonus points

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When they get back on their feet again, people are finally thinking of their next vacation, even if it isn’t until later this year or into the next year. And if you expect to find yourself at IHG hotels regularly while traveling, the IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card could be a useful travel companion.

New cardholders can start earning now 150,000 bonus points after spending $ 3,000 on the card in the first three months of opening the account. Plus, the IHG Premier now comes with one $ 0 annual introductory fee for the first year, an annual fee of $ 89 thereafter.

IHG includes many well-known hotel brands such as Holiday Inn, Hotel Indigo, Kimpton, Crowne Plaza and high-end InterContinental Hotels, to name a few. And frequent flyer website The Points Guy rates IHG points at 0.5 cents each, so this bonus gives you around $ 750 worth of IHG hotels around the world.

With the IHG Premier card alone, even after the first year, you will have access to many benefits that exceed the annual fee, including …

Automatic IHG Platinum status

IHG Premier credit card holders automatically receive free IHG Platinum Elite status. While IHG Platinum status isn’t the best hotel status, it’s better to have some kind of elite status when you walk through the door of a hotel than no status at all.

One of the main advantages of IHG Platinum status is that your points never expire. Typically, IHG points will expire if there is no account activity within 12 months. IHG is very strict with this outside of the pandemic policy so not having to worry about your points expiring is a huge benefit.

• a free fourth night

IHG Hotels

The Holiday Inn Resort Aruba-Beach.

All IHG Premier Credit Card holders receive a free fourth night’s stay when they redeem points at an IHG hotel. There are no exceptions to this benefit – this benefit can be extended to any IHG hotel regardless of the number of points it costs.

For example, let’s say you want to stay at the Holiday Inn Resort Aruba right near Palm Beach, Aruba at a cost of 40,000 points per night. Thanks to this benefit, you can only redeem 120,000 points for a full four night stay at this hotel. This means that with the card’s sign-up bonus alone, you are well on your way to enjoying the sunny Caribbean at no additional cost.

• Phone protection

When you pay your cell phone bill with your IHG Premier card, you are automatically protected in the event your cell phone is stolen or damaged. This is an extremely valuable benefit that isn’t too common with award credit cards.

IHG Premier reimburses up to $ 800 per incident, with a deductible of $ 50 per incident and a maximum of $ 1,000 in reimbursement per year and two incidents over a rolling 12 month period.

Connected: Protect your cell phone from theft or damage with these credit cards.

• Earn bonus points at IHG hotels and elsewhere

Earn a total of up to 25 points for every dollar you spend on IHG Premier at IHG Hotels, along with 2 points per dollar for purchases at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants and 1 point per dollar for all other purchases.

While the number of points you earn for your IHG stays with IHG Premier is higher than any other credit card, any other card is likely to give you more rewards in the other bonus categories and on daily purchases. For example, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card earns 2 points for every dollar you spend on travel and food, but Chase points are worth at least twice as much as IHG points and possibly even more depending on how you use them.

Even with CNN Underscored’s benchmark credit card, the Citi® Double Cash Card, you get 2% cashback – 1% on purchase and an additional 1% on payment – on everything you buy. Since IHG points are worth only 0.5 cents each, according to The Points Guy, the IHG Premier card gives you a 12.5% ​​return on spending at IHG hotels, but only a 1% return on the 2x bonus categories.

• Fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck

When applying for either the Global Entry or TSA PreCheck Trusted Traveler programs, simply pay with your IHG Premier credit card and your application fee of up to $ 100 will be fully refunded. The TSA PreCheck program gets you through TSA security faster at US airports, while Global Entry speeds immigration if you are returning to the US from abroad.

Even if you already have one of these memberships, you can always use your IHG Premier to pay a friend or family member’s application fee and get the refund anyway – the name on the Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application is not required with match the name on the credit card. And you can receive this fee reimbursement once every four years.

• One award night every year for the anniversary of your card

A room at the IHG InterContinental Hotel in Lisbon.

IHG Hotels

A room at the IHG InterContinental Hotel in Lisbon.

Starting with your first IHG Premier Card anniversary (one year from the date you originally received the card), you will receive an Award Night Certificate each year that you can redeem at a qualifying IHG hotel. This certificate cannot be used in every IHG hotel – it is capped in hotels with a price of up to 40,000 IHG ​​Rewards points. But depending on when you are traveling, you may be able to use these certificates in some very high quality hotels.

Depending on the season, the InterContinental Hotel Lisbon, the InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa, the Holiday Inn Resort Aruba and the Hotel Indigo San Diego Del Mar are some notable properties where this certificate can be redeemed, to name but a few. At peak times, these hotels can be quite expensive if you pay for them in cash, and with this benefit they are great value for money.

With the certificate alone, you are already well ahead of the card’s annual fee of USD 89 after the first year. And if your significant other also has an IHG Premier card, you can merge the certificates from both cards for a great weekend getaway by booking award nights one at a time.

If you don’t spend a lot of time at IHG hotels, IHG Premier is probably not for you as you won’t get the best of its perks and perks. If so, check out our guide to the best travel credit cards to find a card that will better suit your needs.

But between the benefits and the sign-up bonus, the IHG Premier card is also worth a look for the casual IHG traveler. In the first year alone, earn 150,000 bonus points for spending $ 3,000 on purchases in the first three months of opening the account, plus a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck refund of up to an additional $ 100.

So, when you’re ready to travel the world again and expect at least two or more stays at an IHG hotel in the near future, you can be on the right track with the cute bonus points on the IHG Premier Card.

Learn more about the IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card.

Check out CNN Underscored’s list The best credit cards in 2021.

Get the latest in personal finance offers, news and advice at CNN Underscored Money.

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