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If you follow this blog often, you’ve probably already read many posts outlining the IHG “Surprises” Promotion. Essentially, with this promotion, you can earn a minimum of 47,000 points and it will only cost you approximately $50. With this promotion you do NOT need to even stay at an IHG hotel! You simply need to fill out 94 entries (or as many as you want up to that amount) and you’ll win at least 500 points per submission. If you want to quickly get up to speed, read these two posts: IHG “Surprises” Overview + FAQs and Preparing for LOTS of IHG Points.
Earlier this week, many folks received the prize emails only to play the “game” and find out that they didn’t actually win anything. Understandably, many people were quite disappointed and thought the promotion was a shame. Fortunately, within 24 hours it was confirmed that there was actually a glitch in the system. Many people received separate emails with the amount of points actually won and an explanation of the glitch. Others were able to call IHG Customer Service and be told over the phone the number of points they earned. It is still confirmed that the minimum amount of points you’ll earn per entry is 500!
With that being said, many people then assumed that all prizes going forward will only win the minimum amount of 500 points per prize. Fortunately, that is not true. Within the past few days, I’ve received a total of 39 prize emails. While most of them earned the minimum 500 point bonus, one earned $50 MasterCard gift card, and two others earned 1,000 points each. So there is still the possibility that you can earn any of the prizes available! Although, if you are just getting started with this game, go into it assuming you’ll win the minimum amount so you are not disappointed.
My Personal Experience
I submitted all 94 entries throughout November and December. Probably in 4 different batches and thus far have received 51 prizes. From those 51 prizes I’ve earned the following: (1) $50 MasterCard gift card, (2) 1,000 point bonuses, and (48) 500 point bonuses for a grand total of 26,000 points. Assuming I earn the minimum of 500 points on the rest of my entries, that will give me a total of 47,500 points. While this cost me approximately $50 for the stamps, envelopes, and notecards, I also earned a $50 gift card which offsets the cost. So for approximately 3-4 hours of time (done while watching TV) I will earn at least 74,500 points for FREE!
My husband, on the other hand, has not received one prize email! Although all 94 of his entries were submitted at the end of December and beginning of January. I truly believe they are extremely backlogged so am not concerned at all. It seems like the prize emails are coming most often now, so my assumption is within the next week he’ll receive some emails.
Your Questions Answered!
While my prior posts includes some FAQs, there are a few questions that continuously come up and I wanted to address them here:
- Do I have to handwrite the notecards? Yes! All 3×5 notecards (or pieces of paper) must be handwritten with the required information.
- Do I have to handwrite the envelopes? No! Feel free to put the envelopes through your printer or make labels.
- Can I use any MasterCard number? Yes! You are only including the first 6 digits of your MasterCard and it can be a credit or debit card. They in no way are able to tie the number to you, they just want to confirm you have a MasterCard by the number you have written down. And yes… the 6 digits of many MasterCards are exactly the same number (read between the lines!).
- The “game” states that I will receive an email with further instructions on claiming my bonus points. How do I do that? You actually will NOT receive a follow up email for just regular points earned. The company stated that within 6 weeks of earning the prize email, your points will be deposited into your account. In my experience, the points were deposited into my account much quicker (within 2 weeks).
- The terms state that I’ll receive an email within 5 business days, but I have yet to receive it. What should I do? DO NOT WORRY! They are getting slammed with entries and it probably far exceeded their expectations. They are getting to each and everyone of them, it is just taking a little bit of time. Just give it some time and see what happens.
Remember, get your entries in (postmarked) by February 15, 2016. Assume you will not receive an email for quite some time and that you’ll win the minimum 500 points per entry. This is just to set expectations so there is no disappointment. If you receive more points and in a more timely fashion, then it will exceed your expectations!