Annual Free Night Cert from IHG (Rewards Club) Visa / Mastercard

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Old Feb 13, 19, 12:49 pm   -   Wikipost
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Where can I use the annual free-night certificate?

For certificates issued before May 1, 2019, any IHG hotel with Chase free night space available. Chase free night certificates issued on or after May 1, 2019 are limited to any IHG hotel costing 40000 points or less.

Where do I find the free-night cert in my IHG online account?

On the My Account page, look at the navigation menu on the left side of the screen. If you have a cert -- either unused or used -- you will see a "Free Night" link below "My Offer Status" and above "Upcoming Reservations". If the link does not appear, try using this direct link after you have logged into your IHG account.

Is the annual free-night certificate revoked if I cancel my Chase card?

No.

If I make a reservation using my free-night certificate and then need to cancel, are there any special procedures? Do I have to call IHG?

You may cancel your reservation online using the same process as for any other reservation. The certificate is normally returned to your account immediately and available for re-use with no wait and no need to call IHG. For unknown reasons, on rare occasions a cert will not instantly reappear; in such cases, call IHG customer service to have the cert redeposited manually.

Can I use my free-night certificate for a date past the certificate's expiration, provided that I make the reservation prior to that expiration date?

As of January 2019, members are reporting that they are unable to do this.
Formerly, some members reported success in doing this. (See, for example, the discussion at post #516.) Two basic recommendations:
  • It is advisable to obtain advance written confirmation, ideally from the hotel itself, that your certificate will be honored under these circumstances.
    • At least one FTer reports having successfully booked post-expiration stays without confirming with the property in advance; see posts 719 & 723. YMMV.
  • Once the certificate expiration date passes, you will not be able to make any changes to the reservation (occupancy, date, room type, etc).
Can I trade/gift my Free-Night Certificate?

No. Anniversary Free-Night Certificates are non-transferable.
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Old Jan 28, 18, 12:18 am
  #871  
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Originally Posted by philemer View Post
1. Anniversary means anniversary, about 12 months after you get your card. What other card gives you a "free anniversary night" after you first get your card?

2. Answer is in the wiki. Results vary.

It's a valuable benefit. Get the card.
thanks bud. but 1) iirc, for the marriott premier biz card I think the free night showed up right after I got approved. however that did require paying an AF for the first year. not sure if thats related.

2) it isnt, which is why I asked. perhaps I wasnt clear. I'm specifically asking about extending the FN cert (without a specific use in mind), say for example sake it recently expired. once again marriott I think will many times extend it even after it has recently expired. however the wiki just talks about folks experiencing using it for a date past its expiry (rather than getting it back after its expired) but for a property they've already booked.

Last edited by FTR 787; Jan 28, 18 at 12:31 am
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Old Jan 28, 18, 4:48 pm
  #872  
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Originally Posted by FTR 787 View Post
thanks bud. but 1) iirc, for the marriott premier biz card I think the free night showed up right after I got approved. however that did require paying an AF for the first year. not sure if thats related.

2) it isnt, which is why I asked. perhaps I wasnt clear. I'm specifically asking about extending the FN cert (without a specific use in mind), say for example sake it recently expired. once again marriott I think will many times extend it even after it has recently expired. however the wiki just talks about folks experiencing using it for a date past its expiry (rather than getting it back after its expired) but for a property they've already booked.
1) For Marriott cards - it DEPENDS on the flavor of the offer. So if THAT particular version has such reward, that is how you get. IHG card is ANNIVERSARY which is very self-explanatory.

2) If it is not mentioned in Wiki, it means it is not a possibility.
IHG allows you book after the FN expiration but any change on that if done after expiry, you LOSE the cert. No if or but. That is EXACTLY what the Wiki tells you. This actually is far better than Marriott or Hyatt regarding to the normal rules of their certs. Though Marriott occasionally would extend the cert for a few months if you are elites. And that is highly YMMV. Hyatt would just tell you to use it or lose it.

Think about it, if an expiring cert could be "extended" by booking a dummy night then canceled it later so you got the cert back - this would mean the cert could be valid perpetually. Do you really think such a loophole would ever exist?
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Old Jan 29, 18, 6:37 am
  #873  
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Originally Posted by Happy View Post
1) 2) If it is not mentioned in Wiki, it means it is not a possibility.
IHG allows you book after the FN expiration but any change on that if done after expiry, you LOSE the cert. No if or but. That is EXACTLY what the Wiki tells you.
Please note the following language, taken not from the Wiki but directly from Chase (my emphasis is added) https://www.chase.com/personal/credi...ary-free-night :
Anniversary Free Night is valid at hotels in the IHG® Rewards Club Family of Brands and must be redeemed, and stay must be completed, within 12 months from date of issue....Anniversary Free Night may not be transferred, extended beyond the expiration date, redeemed for cash, or re-credited for points.

I read that as a very clear statement that you should not be able to use the FN cert beyond the expiration, no matter when it was booked. I have a feeling this is a change that was made after the info in the Wiki was published, and the Wiki has not been updated. I have no first-hand experience in trying to book or complete a stay after the expiration date, so I can't address whether this is an enforced rule.
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Old Jan 29, 18, 11:13 am
  #874  
 
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Last year I booked my free night cert one month before expiration for a stay four months after expiration. No issues whatsoever.
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Old Jan 29, 18, 11:31 am
  #875  
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Originally Posted by ChiefNWA View Post
Last year I booked my free night cert one month before expiration for a stay four months after expiration. No issues whatsoever.
you got lucky....i was unable to use mine a week after it expired & my friend couldn't use his as well about a month or so after his expired....we both booked before the expiration date....
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Old Jan 29, 18, 1:46 pm
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Originally Posted by Keyser View Post
you got lucky....i was unable to use mine a week after it expired & my friend couldn't use his as well about a month or so after his expired....we both booked before the expiration date....
wonder if it is hotel-specific? if you dont mind, can you reveal which hotel didnt work for applying the expired cert? so i guess you end up just having to pay up whatever the nightly rate is at the time you check in?
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Old Jan 29, 18, 5:46 pm
  #877  
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Originally Posted by FTR 787 View Post
...

2) it isnt, which is why I asked. perhaps I wasnt clear. I'm specifically asking about extending the FN cert (without a specific use in mind), say for example sake it recently expired. once again marriott I think will many times extend it even after it has recently expired. however the wiki just talks about folks experiencing using it for a date past its expiry (rather than getting it back after its expired) but for a property they've already booked.
The wiki says:
Can I use my free-night certificate for a date past the certificate's expiration, provided that I make the reservation prior to that expiration date?

Some members have reported success in doing this. (See, for example, the discussion at post #516 .) Two basic recommendations:

It is advisable to obtain advance written confirmation, ideally from the hotel itself, that your certificate will be honored under these circumstances.
At least one FTer reports having successfully booked post-expiration stays without confirming with the property in advance; see posts 719 & 723. YMMV.
Once the certificate expiration date passes, you will not be able to make any changes to the reservation (occupancy, date, room type, etc).


It is possible to extend (but not after it has expired) but rare. You'll have to call & see what they (IHG) say. Check posts noted above.
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Old Jan 29, 18, 10:37 pm
  #878  
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Originally Posted by gnomey View Post
wonder if it is hotel-specific? if you dont mind, can you reveal which hotel didnt work for applying the expired cert? so i guess you end up just having to pay up whatever the nightly rate is at the time you check in?
it was the crowne plaza times square....they agreed to cancel the reservation without charge or agreed to charge me the lowest pre-paid rate that was available online....i just asked them to cancel....
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Old Jan 30, 18, 11:00 pm
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Originally Posted by Keyser View Post
you got lucky....i was unable to use mine a week after it expired & my friend couldn't use his as well about a month or so after his expired....we both booked before the expiration date....
Did you check in and they wouldn’t take certificate or did you ask hotel in advance of your stay and they said it wouldn’t work? I used two expired certificates at Intercontinental SF by just checking in with the expired certificate and it worked fine. It was a month after expiration.
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Old Jan 31, 18, 1:32 am
  #880  
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Originally Posted by AICML View Post
Did you check in and they wouldn’t take certificate or did you ask hotel in advance of your stay and they said it wouldn’t work? I used two expired certificates at Intercontinental SF by just checking in with the expired certificate and it worked fine. It was a month after expiration.
at check-in they informed me that the certificate had expired & they couldn't allow me to use it....they were pretty nice about the whole thing & immediately offered to cancel without any charge even though it was beyond the cancellation deadline....
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Old Jan 31, 18, 10:12 am
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I have a similar situation, my cert expires in May with a stay in June at an Indigo. The system allowed me to make the reservation. Now I wonder what will happen at check in (It's a 3 night stay, the third night using the certificate). If they don't honor the certificate, I wonder if I can substitute the certificate for the following year, which should be available to use by then. I'm going to roll the dice.
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Old Jan 31, 18, 11:39 am
  #882  
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great value

We have previously used the certs for IC Bora Bora Thalasso, Le Moana and IC Moorea.

Now that Kimpton has come in under the umbrella and is bookable, we just booked the Kimptom Grand Cayman Seafire resort and spa and the free night certs allowed us to book into the King suite. With 3 in our family with the Chase IHG card, we have 3 nights by certs and then 4 nights by points (ouch at 70k each).
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Old Jan 31, 18, 12:22 pm
  #883  
 
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Originally Posted by Keyser View Post
at check-in they informed me that the certificate had expired & they couldn't allow me to use it....they were pretty nice about the whole thing & immediately offered to cancel without any charge even though it was beyond the cancellation deadline....
i wonder if properties in the US are more strict / vigilant on this...

would be curious to know if any international properties clamp down on this
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Old Feb 14, 18, 9:57 am
  #884  
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Recently completed a stay at a Kimpton property, using the Chase Annual Free Night Cert. Reservation was made when system first went live, had all kinds of issues, required reservations phone call to resolve. Upon check-in, the front desk agent claimed there were 2 identical reservations, manager cancelled one, apologized for the mix-up in their system.
My IHG account shows a "Non-Qualifying Stay: Discounted Rate" billing, equivalent to bar charges and parking/resort fee, free night certificate is back in my account. Any chance that someone with audit the record, take back the free night? At what point can I use it again?
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Old Feb 14, 18, 1:30 pm
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Originally Posted by Carl Christensen View Post
We have previously used the certs for IC Bora Bora Thalasso, Le Moana and IC Moorea.

Now that Kimpton has come in under the umbrella and is bookable, we just booked the Kimptom Grand Cayman Seafire resort and spa and the free night certs allowed us to book into the King suite. With 3 in our family with the Chase IHG card, we have 3 nights by certs and then 4 nights by points (ouch at 70k each).
Was the certificate expired at the time of the check-in at IC Bora Bora? If so, were you able to use it?
I booked reward stay using the certificate last year for the stay in March 2018 but the expiration date of the certificate was February 2018. So I am wondering if I can still use my old certificate.
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