IHG Program Update March 2022

Old Nov 14, 22, 6:50 am
  #1036  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: UK
Programs: BA Nada, HH Diamond, IHG Spire AMB, Marriott Plat, Accor Gold
Posts: 475
I wonder if F&B credits are still coming ‘later this year’ and which year that refers to? Just checked out of IC Madrid and would have used the credit to pay for the excellent brunch if I could.
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Old Nov 14, 22, 7:22 am
  #1037  
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
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Originally Posted by HadesNL View Post
Also to clear away confusion for our newly minted Diamond friends....
And to keep the need of repeating myself .,.
While informing you with some (insider) knowledge / experience
That no other US titan blog or niche blog will tell you or has not even bothered to warn its readers about


and to support nicolas75
when it comes to these claims

Quote LL comments:
https://loyaltylobby.com/2022/11/13/...tels/#comments


Last week was with my partner who has ihg diamond at an IHG hotel in Germany.
Just a one level upgrade even though much better rooms were available.
2 PM check out.
No lounge access

!!



It seems a lot of people have too high expectations of IHG's Diamond status.
Thinking it to be highest status among all brands of the group.
Having no idea of being outranked as Diamond at some of IHG's brands.
(Blogs seem to have convenient left this crucial information out)

I implore everyone to have expectations managed and thoughts fine tuned.

Because now i will explain the rank of status and benefits at IHG's brands
(Of own personal patronage + according to T&C + tenure experience + FT's collective wisdom of sages)



Intercontinental hotels
Note: Inner Circle is not applicable at Intercontinental hotels, highest status here is Royal Ambassador

Royal Ambassador (per invitation only)
https://www.ihg.com/intercontinental...bassador-royal

Ambassador (sign up paid programme)
https://www.ihg.com/intercontinental.../en/ambassador

IHG Diamond status
https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/cu...er-tc/2nd-page



In order of rank for upgrades / late checkout

1 Royal Ambassador
2 Diamond Ambassador
3 Platinum Ambassador
4 Diamonds
5 Platinum

* AMB is a paid programme:
- guaranteed an upgrade (cat+1)
- guarenteed late checkout till 16.00H

* Diamond :
- upgrade subject to availability at hotel's discretion
- late checkout subject to availability at hotel's discretion
! Pro TIP: mail reservations in advance to ask about the posibilities % chance to set expectations




Breakfast Complimentary

RA
(if hotel has no open club lounge)

&

Diamonds
(must inform reservations / reception at checkin that breakfast is chosen as Diamond welcome amenity)


Note: Ambassador does not get free breakfast


Lounge access

RA
(Part of status benefit/auto-granted)

&
Diamond
(= only at 40/70 nights milestone rewards selection, must pick & choose in IHG account)


* NOTE:
Ambassador: does not get lounge access!
Diamond: does not auto-grant lounge access,
must have chosen lounge access as 40/70 N as milestone rewards in IHG-account before stay



Kimpton hotels
NOTE: RA / AMB is not applicable at Kimpton hotels, it has Inner Circle as highest status

Inner Circle: per invitation only
https://www.ihg.com/kimptonhotels/co...y/inner-circle

IHG Diamond status
https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/cu...er-tc/2nd-page



In order of rank for upgrades / late checkout

1 Inner Circle
2 Diamond
3 Platinum


* Inner Circle (https://www.ihg.com/kimptonhotels/co...y/inner-circle)
- has guaranteed cat+1 upgrade
- guarenteed late checkout till 16.00H


* Diamond:
- upgrade subject to availability at hotel's discretion
- late checkout subject to availability at hotel's discretion
! Pro TIP: mail reservations in advance to ask about the posibilities % chance to set expectations




Breakfast Complimentary

Inner Circle = grants also Diamond status benefits

&

Diamond

NOTE: both must inform reservations / reception at checkin that breakfast is chosen as Diamond welcome amenity





Other brands: HI/HIX/Voco/CP/StaybridgeSuites/Indigo etc.
NOTE: RA / AMB / Inner Circle is not applicable at these brands, Diamond is the highest status
IHG Diamond status :
https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/cu...er-tc/2nd-page


In order of rank for upgrades / late checkout

1 Diamond
2 Platinum

Diamond / Platinum:
- upgrade subject to availability at hotel's discretion
- late checkout subject to availability at hotel's discretion
! Pro TIP: mail reservations in advance to ask about the posibilities % chance to set expectations



Lounge Access

Diamonds only
(= only at 40/70 nights milestone rewards selection, must pick & choose in IHG account)




Breakfast complimentary

Diamond only

NOTE: both must inform reservations / reception at checkin that breakfast is chosen as Diamond welcome amenity


---------------------------------------------


I cannot speak for Six Senses or for Regent, other regulars may wish to chime in....
I trust their experience and wisdom to add and improve where needed.


Moderators:
I would appreciate it if this could be made into a sticky,
Would make an easy reference for regulars to point out to members.
Would provide newbies with a first non stop source of explaination about status & rank at IHG-hotels
- i admit it is confusion that reigns


Bloggers:
If you wish to blatantly copy this information because you all seem to forget to post these important details to

inform the newbies
I prefer FT and all my wise friends here to get a honorable mention or at least a hat tip!
You may wish to thank me personally for having saved the uninformed of disappointment and unrealistic expectations

Lounge access is a mile stone award not necessarily a Diamond related benefit as a platinum member can choose it at 40 nights

Just pointing it out as you say" Lounge Access Diamonds only(= only at 40/70 nights milestone rewards selection, must pick & choose in IHG account)"
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Old Nov 14, 22, 7:24 am
  #1038  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Programs: B6 Mosaic, Bonvoy LT Titanium (x SPG LT), IHG Spire, UA Silver
Posts: 5,374
Which begs the question why must IHG make things so complicated? Streamline the programs and be done with it.
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Old Nov 14, 22, 7:41 am
  #1039  
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: PHL
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Posts: 234
Originally Posted by sfozrhfco View Post
Which begs the question why must IHG make things so complicated? Streamline the programs and be done with it.
I agree Inner Circle is a vestige of Kimpton that should be phased out by now.

Ambassador has been around a long time, and IHG seems to embrace it. Yes, it's a quirk that none of the other super-chains have, but I would rather IHG have it than not.
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Old Nov 14, 22, 7:47 am
  #1040  
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Originally Posted by kauppias View Post
Lounge access is a mile stone award not necessarily a Diamond related benefit as a platinum member can choose it at 40 nights

Just pointing it out as you say" Lounge Access Diamonds only(= only at 40/70 nights milestone rewards selection, must pick & choose in IHG account)"
Thanks for pointing that out!
Will EDIT my post!


Updated to reflect the add on = done

Last edited by HadesNL; Nov 14, 22 at 7:57 am Reason: Hat tip to kauppias
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Old Nov 14, 22, 8:06 am
  #1041  
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Originally Posted by sfozrhfco View Post
Which begs the question why must IHG make things so complicated? Streamline the programs and be done with it.
Been using the program for 2 years now, don't really see what is complicated about it to be honest (especially compared to airline programs!)
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Old Nov 14, 22, 8:46 am
  #1042  
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Originally Posted by sfozrhfco View Post
Which begs the question why must IHG make things so complicated? Streamline the programs and be done with it.
I don't think it's complicated. If there are any aspects you feel are then please tell us what they are and we'll try and make it simpler.

What is making it complicated is people who think they know better and then write articiles that are either incorrect or give the impression that benfits apply when they don't or they are better than they are.
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Old Nov 14, 22, 8:49 am
  #1043  
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It is because of IHG1-rewards programme updates now going on mainline (US-titans) blogs that the general public gets told that Diamond is the next best thing created by G-D like the wheel and sliced bread.

No blogs i came across - up until now - has taken the duty to properly prepare their readers
of the underlying terms / practical application / background information / insitu stay experience

All because those blogs have had ties with Marriot / Hilton / Hyatt:
examples:
- reaching out to corporate /
- room was provided by ... but my opnions are my own,
- ..... put me up in their hotel,
- media/press event invitation
- free room but unbiased review
- kindly provided us a room
- not self funded but with creditcard promo
- sponsored by
- may earn an affiliate
- booked as a TA
- using preferred parter luxury travel advisory
* need i go on.....

But have always treated IHG like the ugly stepchild, unworthy of aspirational travel or denying one needs just convenient practical use,
And as such have provided a total unrealistic view on the daily practicality of Diamond status,
Omitting useful data & facts - adding untrue elements,
That is just Creating disappointment with the newbies ...
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Old Nov 14, 22, 9:44 am
  #1044  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
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Originally Posted by UKtravelbear View Post
I don't think it's complicated. If there are any aspects you feel are then please tell us what they are and we'll try and make it simpler.

What is making it complicated is people who think they know better and then write articiles that are either incorrect or give the impression that benfits apply when they don't or they are better than they are.
They are overcomplicating things by having unnecessary single brand programs. It may have made sense to offer some special encouragement to stay at IC hotels when that was the only higher level brand. That is no longer the case. What is the point of keeping Inner Circle? It is no longer a standalone company. Just get rid of it. Why not just incorporate IC/Kimpton/Regent/Six Senses and create a single higher level unpublished status?

Remember as well that the bloggers are just regurgitating the marketing of IHG. If there are claims that the new program is so much better---obviously the question "compared to what?" comes into play. For somebody that stays at Marriott thinking about moving some business to IHG, they are going to consider, will I get upgrades, will I get a 4PM check out, will I get lounge access?
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Old Dec 2, 22, 11:04 pm
  #1045  
 
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I selected milestone rewards for 20 and 30 nights when I was not at the 20 nights yet. Met the 40, 50 nights in Oct.
just hit 60 nights today

The milestone rewards now asks to me choose 20,30 nights rewards again, not only that, ask me to choose 2 sets of 40 nights in Feb 6 and another 2 sets for 40 nights by March 6. Also 2 sets at 50 nights and 1 set at 60 nights
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Old Dec 3, 22, 1:25 am
  #1046  
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Christmas come early?

it migh be slow to update the system?

It might be wise just to choose the X nights milestones you haven't chosen yet,
How tempting extra freebies seem, i think there will be soon (new calender year) some great analysis by corporate to see how the new system performs ,
You wouldn't want to be locked out of your account and lose your benefits/points

YMMV

then again all own risk if you want to cash in and score extra
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Old Dec 3, 22, 3:10 am
  #1047  
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
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Sorry to abruptly change the subject but if anyone has been wondering, it is not possible to use the confirmable suite upgrade reward on the IHG Luxury and Lifestyle or Virtuoso rates. I've just tried and been told it's only available on the best flexible rate
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Old Dec 3, 22, 3:54 am
  #1048  
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I was under assumption in order to use the Milestone Suite upgrade:
- must hook flex rate / member's flex rate
- must book direct with IHG/Site/App
- call in to get upgrade

As mentioned
https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/cu...er-tc/2nd-page
  • Confirmable Suite Upgrade can only be applied to stays that are on an eligible rate, e.g., Best Flexible, Member Discount, Government, and select Corporate and package rates
  • Confirmable Suite Upgrades cannot be used with the following rate types:
    • Group rates, package tour or convention where charges are being paid by a third party
    • Reward Night/Free Night (eligible at a future date)
    • Non-Qualified rate like Wholesale, OTA, and Employee rate
    • Prepaid rates if deposit is already applied
    • Some hotel defined packages
Maybe in your case "select package rate" is not valid because of a certain market ?

*
But supposedly Virtuoso TA as preferred partners,
have such good relations & connections with their hotels
that they can pull some strings for their clients
.....
if you believe the blogs
*


with that in mind......
I am not here to defend or attack but just from mere observation

Think of IHG's reasoning concerning upgrades:

elite level is:
plat/diamond will get +1 subject to availability
AMB/Innercircle wil get +1 guaranteed
RA will get +2 guaranteed

if booking Virtuoso or L&L rate + having the appropiate elite level,
would offer all elite levels with their virtuoso/L&L booking:
VirtuosoL&L upgrade subject to availability + elite's +1 catagory upgrade

there is reason to believe:
some hotels go beyond, upgrade + upgrade
some hotels do the minimal, so upgrade but then suit to best of that upgradable category roomtype
some hotels are strict, cite the elite status transforms the virtuoso/L&L rate from subject to availability to confirmed



----------------------

and with that logic think about stacking above all with the CSU = confirmable suite upgrade
Which should mean all elite levels + virtuoso/L&L + CSU =
cause all guests bookings to change
be set to entry suite
AND
then apply the upgrade benefit of the elite member on the suite cat+1
AND
then apply the upgrade benefit of the virtuose/L&L on the suite cat +1

That would create a logistic nightmare like Marriott has with its to many ranks of elite for upgrade
and with virtuoso/MarriotStars-lumiious/AmexFH&R bookings
(whom to upgrade in what dominant rank?)
or
An inventory nightmare like Hyatt with all Globalists going auto-upgraded into standard suites + virtuoso/HyattPrivé booking upgrade benefit
(are there even enough suites of all types left to upgrade into )

Which causes ofcourse disappointment and frustration with the regulars & elite members
because the upgrade chain has become to complex by corporate and hotels can't / won't deliver

So this might reasons why IHG-hotels / reservations act/think
https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/cu...er-tc/2nd-page
as they interpret corporate's t&c
  • Confirmable Suite Upgrade cannot be stacked with guaranteed upgrades for Royal Ambassador, Ambassador, and Inner Circle Members, any additional upgrades are at the discretion of the hotel

Note: Diamond & Platinum not memtioned in above line as their upgrades where always subject to availability ......!
Note: though that hotel CAN go beyond at their own discretion
Note: if a Virtuoso TA is touted to be excellent in his relation with a certain hotel, it would suit their image to push for the upgrade & statusfy their client

with corporates's t&c
  • Confirmable Suite Upgrade can only be applied to stays that are on an eligible rate, e.g., Best Flexible, Member Discount, Government, and select Corporate and package rates
  • Confirmable Suite Upgrades cannot be used with the following rate types:
    • Group rates, package tour or convention where charges are being paid by a third party
    • Reward Night/Free Night (eligible at a future date)
    • Non-Qualified rate like Wholesale, OTA, and Employee rate
    • Prepaid rates if deposit is already applied
    • Some hotel defined packages




sorry for the long story!
but just giving my 2 cents in thought and observation
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Last edited by HadesNL; Dec 3, 22 at 4:58 am
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Old Dec 3, 22, 4:35 am
  #1049  
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
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Originally Posted by HadesNL View Post
I was under assumption in order to use the Milestone Suite upgrade:
- must hook flex rate / member's flex rate
- must book direct with IHG/Site/App
- call in to get upgrade

As mentioned
https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/cu...er-tc/2nd-page
  • Confirmable Suite Upgrade can only be applied to stays that are on an eligible rate, e.g., Best Flexible, Member Discount, Government, and select Corporate and package rates
  • Confirmable Suite Upgrades cannot be used with the following rate types:
    • Group rates, package tour or convention where charges are being paid by a third party
    • Reward Night/Free Night (eligible at a future date)
    • Non-Qualified rate like Wholesale, OTA, and Employee rate
    • Prepaid rates if deposit is already applied
    • Some hotel defined packages
Maybe in your case "select package rate" is not valid because of a certain market ?

*
But supposedly Virtuoso TA as preferred partners,
have such good relations & connections with their hotels
that they can pull some strings for their clients
.....
if you believe the blogs
*
I had emailed them a few weeks ago to ask specifically if virtuoso and lux life rates counted and got a cut and paste reply of the above.

Clearly they don't class under the select package rates.
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Old Dec 3, 22, 4:55 am
  #1050  
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Thanks for the clarification and the warning!
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