I won’t cover changes to to the IHG free night certificate since it’s been widely covered.
The IHG Select Card had long been among the 3 cards that I think are worth the annual fees. Like most, I found the new cap on the annual certificate to be a major disappointment. I usually redeem the certificate with a paid stay at a IHG (typically Intercontinental) property.
I will say this: IHG properties – particularly Holiday Inns and Holiday Inns Express – have been my hotel of choice growing up. While my hotel tastes have changed over the years and I’ve shifted a lot of my business to mid-tier Hilton/Marriott properties, I still have a soft spot for IHG.
New IHG Cards
Chase just came out with 2 new IHG cards, the Chase Travel Card ($29 annual fee) and the Chase IHG premier card ($89 annual fee). Disclaimer: This is not an affiliate link; so I’m not pushing the card.
While some are threatening to drop their existing IHG Select card, I decided to keep it and also go for the premier card. It’s not a popular stance right now, but there are a few benefits that I find appealing (in order of interest):
1. 80,000 signup bonus after $2k spend: This should cover at least one night at a high end property, so it’s worth its annual fee.
2. 4th night free benefit: Huge perk for me. I can make use of this benefit, so this would yield some good savings.
3. The Annual Free Night Certificate at renewal (capped): It’s obviously not as good of a deal as before, but I should still be able to make use of the annual certificate.
Whether this works out for the long term is yet to be decided. If I find that I can’t make as much use of the annual certs because the cap is just too limiting, I might not keep them at some point.
For now, I want to give it a shot and see if it works.
Is Chase 5/24 In Place for the new IHG cards?
No, it’s not. I’m over 5/24 and I was instantly approved.
Can you get the sign-up bonus if you’ve have the Select Card?
I’d expect to get the bonus since it’s a new product, new card, new annual fee. If you are risk-adverse, however, you might want to wait until some data points are out.
I know my choice seemed questionable to some in light of the free night devaluation, but it actually makes sense for me.
If you typically stay at Intercontinental and have no plans to stay at the lower-mid end of the IHG properties, then absolutely, the Select card may not be worth keeping anymore. However, if you can make use of some of the new benefits associated with the new card and you could still make do with the annual certificate, having both might just be something that’s worth considering.
What are you planning to do with your IHG card due to the free night certificate devaluation? Keep it? Shred it? Are you planning to get one of the new cards?