Mystery Solved! How I Bought 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points for $28.80 (0.30 CPP)

Good afternoon everyone.  Through a combination of the current IHG Rewards Club Accelerate Promo and a 20% discount on Cash and Points bookings (offer now expired), I was able to buy 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points for $28.80 (or 0.30 cents per point).  The standard price for cash and points booking is 0.72 cents per point.  Let me explain what happened.

I was looking at my IHG Rewards Club Accelerate offers and saw an offer to earn 4,500 bonus IHG Rewards Club Points with a Cash and Points booking.  Since I can use Cash and Points to purchase a minimum of 5,000 IHG Rewards Club Points, I figured I would complete this offer and get another step closer toward completing all of my Accelerate offers.

I decided to book a Cash and Points booking at the Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel near Union Square in San Francisco.  The standard points rate was 55,000 IHG Rewards Club Points per night.  With Cash and Points, I used 50,000 IHG Rewards Club Points and purchased 5,000 IHG Rewards Points.  A day after making the Cash and Points booking, I logged into my IHG Rewards Account and saw a Points and Cash purchase of 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points.  I thought I only bought 5,000 IHG Rewards Club Points – what happened?

I was worried that IHG charged me for the purchase of 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points, so I logged into my Chase account and looked at the transactions on my Chase IHG Premier Credit Card.  Luckily, I was only charged $28.80 for the points purchase of the Cash and Points booking.  So the next question that came to my mind was, how did I purchase 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points for $28.80?

I tried to retrace my steps, so I went through the process to book a dummy reservation at the Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel.  I picked a random date in August and the price was 55,000 IHG Rewards Club Points per night – the same price that I booked.

Strangely, when I went to the Cash and Points section, it showed a price of $42 to buy 5,000 IHG Rewards Club Points.  That wasn’t right.

I tried a different date in July and the Cash and Points section showed a price of $36 to buy 5,000 IHG Rewards Club Points.  Closer, but still not right.

I then remembered reading a recent Frequent Miler post about buying IHG Rewards Points for 0.384 cents per point.  It was possible due to a 20% discount on Cash and Points bookings.  I did some math and found that 80% of $36 was $28.80 (20% discount on the $36 Cash and Points price above).  I must have bought 5,000 IHG Rewards Club Points during the 20% discount on Cash and Points bookings.  But why did I get 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points instead of 5,000 IHG Rewards Club Points?

I thought maybe it was related to buying IHG Rewards Club Points.  Currently, IHG is offering a 100% bonus on IHG Points, but I didn’t get 10,000 IHG Rewards Club Points for $67.50.

After searching around IHG’s website for a few minutes, I decided to go back to my IHG Rewards Club Accelerate Promo page.  Strangely, the 4,500 bonus IHG Rewards Club Points for making a Cash and Points booking showed as Complete.  Usually, it takes IHG 1-2 weeks to report any Accelerate activity, so this was very surprising.

When I looked at the terms for the Cash and Points offer, the terms state, “Please allow 2 to 3 weeks for bonus points to be posted onto your account.”  2-3 weeks is what I am used to with IHG, not next day.

Back at my IHG Account Activity page, I now understand that I bought 5,000 IHG Rewards Club Points for $28.80 and I triggered the 4,500 IHG Rewards Club Points offer.  Technically, it looks like I bought 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points for $28.80, but that can’t be repeated (I only get the Cash and Points bonus points once) and the current Cash and Points offer is now expired.

For clarity, I wish IHG would have broken the 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points into 2 seperate transactions:

  • 5,000 IHG Rewards Club Points for the Cash and Points booking at the Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel
  • 4,500 IHG Rewards Club Points for the Cash and Points Accelerate offer

It is also strange that the 4,500 IHG Rewards Club Points for the Cash and Points Accelerate offer posted before the credit card charge went from pending to confirmed.  IHG is full of strange things, so this shouldn’t surprise me at all.  If you have any questions about making IHG Cash and Points bookings, please leave a comment below.  Have a great day everyone!

3 thoughts on “Mystery Solved! How I Bought 9,500 IHG Rewards Club Points for $28.80 (0.30 CPP)

  1. Richard Garrido

    I earned 9,500 points too with IHG Accelerate a couple months ago for a Cash & Points booking at Crowne Plaza Copenhagen Towers within a day or two of booking the hotel and buying 5,000 points. Even more interesting is I canceled the reservation, yet the points remained from Accelerate and my task remain completed.

    Eventually I booked a second Points & Cash stay in Prague just to be sure I would have no issues earning the Accelerate tasks completion bonus. My final Accelerate completion email after earning the maximum bonus points still showed the Copenhagen Points & Cash stay I canceled as completing the Points & Cash stay booking.

    Reply
  2. trvl_r (@trvl_r)

    I think we never explicit specified task as per terms clearly stated “Book 1 stay(s) using Points & Cash and earn 4,500 bonus points”. Logically, by made the booking have have triggered the task get completed automatically (whether to proceed with stay or cancel). Cheers!

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