InterContinental Hotels Group’s (IHG) Priority Club to Adjust Redemption Rates.

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It is the time of the year again when hotel groups tend to tinker with their redemption charts. In 2010, when Hilton devalued their program, IHG even saw it as a marketing opportunity and launched a Luckiest Loser campaign. This time, however, it is IHG’s time to devalue theirs. We’ll see if Hilton will run a campaign to “give” back to IHG.

Here are the numbers; 25% (1125) of the hotels are going up, 20% (900) of the properties are going down, and 55% (2475) are staying the same. There are more than 4500 hotels under the IHG umbrella.

The new redemption rates are effective on January 18th but the old point rates are bookable by phone until March 18th. Would it be nice to know what hotels are going up and which ones are going down? It certainly would but IHG won’t disclose it. Apparently, this is for their competitive advantage according to a spokesperson. Starwood and Hyatt both publish a list of hotels that are changing categories and members then have time to book using the old rates.

Here are the new redemption levels for various IHG brands. I have highlighted the new levels.

priority-club-new-redemption-chart

For comparison here’s the old one.

priority-club-new-redemption-chart-old

It is not difficult to guess that the most sought after InterContinental hotels like Amsterdam, Paris, London, Cannes, Bora Bora, Rome, and maybe even Bali and Beirut might move from 40K to 50K. Also, number of more popular Crowne Plaza hotels will move from 25K to 35K.

The change in hotel redemption levels is inevitable. It is the way the loyalty programs handle the devaluation of points. It would be far better if IHG’s Priority Club would come clean and just put the list out of the hotels that go up and down in redemption levels. Then members would be able to plan accordingly and see how this change in redemption levels would affect them.

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