Free Night Annually with the IHG Rewards Credit Card… No Restrictions!

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One of the best perks of the IHG Rewards Club Select Visa credit card is that you receive a free night annually. This free night gets deposited to your account on your card members first anniversary and every year there after (and doesn’t expire until a year after you receive it!).

While there are other credit cards that give you a free night annually (i.e., Marriott and Hyatt), the free night earned from the IHG card is the only one where there is no restriction on the hotel it can be redeemed at. I still like and appreciate the free night given from the Marriott and Hyatt card, but Marriott is capped at a category 5 and Hyatt is capped at a category 4. The IHG free night night can be used at ANY InterContinental Hotels Group hotel (which includes: InterContinental Hotel, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Hotel indigo, Staybridge Suites, Candlewood Suites). This includes anything from a $79/night Holiday Inn Express in Ohio to a $800/night InterContinental Hotel in Bora Bora! All categories are included which is AMAZING!

In theory though, you really are paying $49 for this free night as this is the annual fee of the credit card. This is not a card I would personally use for every day spend, but a card I’d keep in my sock draw solely for the free night annually. As always though, it is only worth it if you will be able to utilize the free night on an annual basis. Even if you cannot use it at an expensive hotel, as long as you get a $49+ value out of the free night, you are ahead!

The current sign up offer for this card is 60,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 within the first three months. With this card you get 5 points per dollar at any IHG hotel, 2 points per dollar spend on gas, groceries, and dining, and 1 point on everything else. Another great perk of this card is when you use your points to redeem for a free night you’ll get a 10% rebate on the points redeemed back into your account within 4-6 weeks after your stay. You also get IHG Platinum status with this card although I do not put much value on that status.

This is one of my favorite credit cards to keep year after year. My husband and I applied for the card at the same time so every year we have two free nights we can use at any IHG hotel!  This is a card that is not talked about often, but in my opinion has huge value. Especially with the current sign up bonus. If you have this card, where have you used your free night?

Related blog posts about the InterContinental Hotels Group loyalty program:

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  1. I used it last month at the Holiday Inn Waikiki where rate was about $200/night or 35,000 points. I wouldn’t consider it a huge success but it fitted my plan 🙂

  2. I used quite a few of our IHG sign up bonus points during a two week vacation to Sweden, Finland and Germany (where 90% of our rooms were free with points and our flights were free with miles) this past winter. Not sure where I’ll use my free anniversary night this year, but I am coming up on the year mark and will be keeping the card for this benefit.
    The reason I am posting, however, is that the Platinum status did get us upgraded at the Helsinki Crowne Plaza (that happened to be a 5k pointbreaks room) where we received lounge access that included evening drinks and breakfast. Since the hotel doesn’t offer free breakfast, this was a great benefit for us that morning.

  3. I also love this card for the free night. Several years ago I had no other use for the card, so I used it for a free night at the Intercontinental in Chicago in order to attend a wedding at the hotel. The room rate was about 175, so it was good, but not great use of the free night. I dropped my wife and went to park the car and she called my cellphone and told me the room was unacceptable and that I would have to go to the front desk. When I got to the room, it was a full suite, maybe 1500 sq feet with bedroom, living room, sitting room, dining area, huge bathroom and dressing area. They told her at the front desk that it was a Platinum upgrade. Friends who also stayed got a rather small room.

    I also used last years night in Manhattan at the Intercontinental which was $450 per night.

    So for me the card is a keeper.

  4. There is an issue on the IHG website. It is not showing the free night status (both me and my husband have the card). IHG customer service was completely helpless. I discovered a thread on flyer talk that says changing your country (at the top of the IHG website) to the UK, it will display the free nights. It worked but they seriously need to fix that. I can see a lot of people in the USA letting their free nights expire.

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