Overly Generous IHG Spire Elite Benefits?


Back in late July, we run a piece about IHG’s loyalty dilemma. In my opinion, the IHG Rewards Club is not a loyalty program at all but rather a rewards one – essentially rebates.

Spire Elite is the highest level within IHG Rewards Club, not taking Kimpton’s Inner Circle or InterContinental’s Royal Ambassador into account, and comes with abysmal on-property benefits as illustrated with the “benefits” card given at a Crowne Plaza hotel.

You can access IHG’s page for Elite benefits here.

READ MORE: IHG Rewards Club Rate & Bonus Points And Miles Promotions

If a Spire Elite gets a full bottle of water, does Platinum get half and a Gold quarter? When was the last time you used LAN (some probably don’t even know what this means) connection at a hotel? I am surprised that ISDN isn’t an option.

What I would have received at any of the competitor hotels:

Hyatt (Globalist)

– Guaranteed 4 PM check-out

– Space available suite upgrade

– Club lounge access and/or breakfast

Hilton (Diamond)

– Late check out (not guaranteed or well defined)

– Upgrade to executive level or suite

– Lounge access and/or breakfast

Marriott (Titanium)

– Guaranteed 4 PM check-out

– Space available suite upgrade

– Lounge access and/or breakfast

Accor (Platinum)

– Late check out (not guaranteed or well defined)

– Space available upgrades (not well defined)

– Lounge access and/or breakfast (only in Asia-Pacific)

Here’s a reminder:

IHG’s Loyalty Problem


These benefits don’t matter if the competitors don’t have a property where you are traveling to like was the case with this Crowne Plaza stay in Okayama.

But this begs the question, do you want to have a “loyalty” program that is the last option for many? Is the loyalty program driving any extra revenue or stays that would not have otherwise taken place? These programs are not cheap for the hotels to participate (3% to 5% of the room revenue).

I like some of IHG’s brands like InterContinental, but it is challenging for me to give them any business due to a lack of benefits.

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