Chase IHG credit card annual free night certificate devaluation

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Old Apr 2, 18, 10:27 am
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Chase IHG credit card annual free night certificate devaluation

According to OMAAT, the Chase IHG credit card annual free night certificate benefit is getting devalued big time:
Ouch: IHG To Devalue Anniversary Nights - One Mile at a Time

According to the post, all free night certs issued after May 1 2018 will be usable only for hotels that require 40K or fewer points per night.
I opened my card in September last year so I don't get to use the no-cap free night cert not even once...
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Old Apr 2, 18, 10:49 am
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Well that's unfortunate. Still, even with this the card is a good value. Platinum status for $49 plus the bonus points on spend. I was hoping they would just raise the annual fee but this card has been far too generous for a long time so this, while disappointing, is not surprising. I'm still keeping my card though.
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Old Apr 2, 18, 11:03 am
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No more free nights at the Willard. The Holiday Inn @ 40,000 points is $300 per night. Quite a bargain, devaluation or not. The points and miles game is a moving target.
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Old Apr 2, 18, 11:06 am
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Kinda bummed about this as I only got to use it once and I am not sure it was a top notch property. I have on certificate that has been issued I will go ahead and splurge on a nice stay but I will still be keeping the card after this because any IHG hotel is usually $150 or more where I go so $49 bucks a year is still a steal.
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Old Apr 2, 18, 12:10 pm
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Originally Posted by CMK10 View Post
Well that's unfortunate. Still, even with this the card is a good value. Platinum status for $49 plus the bonus points on spend. I was hoping they would just raise the annual fee but this card has been far too generous for a long time so this, while disappointing, is not surprising. I'm still keeping my card though.
I agree and think the new "Top Tier" card will be even a better value given the perks! I'm about to churn this IHG card in Sept AFTER my anniversary night posts.

New $89 annual fee card:
*80,000 IHG Rewards points for a sign-up bonus
*10X points per dollar spent at IHG properties
*10,000 bonus points after spending $20,000 on the card annually
*4th night free on award stays
*Anniversary free night at eligible hotels
*Platinum Elite status
*Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit every four years
*20% discount on point purchases

https://thepointsguy.com/news/ihg-fr...00000206867312

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Old Apr 2, 18, 12:27 pm
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Sigh... I literally just signed up for the card for me and my husband, following the advise of that very same blogger that the chances of this benefit being grandfathered is very high. Maybe in future, I'll think twice before jumping in the bandwagon and listen to these aggressive bloggers trying to push for quotas/commission for these CC referrals.
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Old Apr 2, 18, 12:56 pm
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Legally, I think Chase/IHG is actually on shaky ground not allowing those who applied for the card and received it before the change at least the first anniversary night at any IHG that has standard room availability. Even now, the Chase website has the following language: "After your account anniversary date, you’ll receive an Anniversary Free Night at any of the over 5,000 IHG® hotels worldwide.1 There are no blackout dates and no restrictions. Look for your free night on your IHG Rewards Club account."

The footnote has some reservation language but nowhere suggests that "any of of the over 5,000 IHG hotels worldwide" means "only those at 40,000 points," and I'm not immediately seeing anything that says they can take away the benefit at any time.

Maybe because there is no spend requirement, they can get away with it. But this is a pretty shady business practice to take the first annual fee and not provide the anniversary free night under the terms used to induce people to apply. I applied in October and think this is pretty lame. I actually might consider a CFPB complaint just to see what happens.
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Old Apr 2, 18, 1:02 pm
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So, Hubby and I have two free nights that should be good for any IHG property - Yay! My question is, Should we cancel the old card after redeeming the free nights so we can apply for the newer version and get the bonus? Or, is it safe to keep the current card and apply for the new version when it comes out? Four free nights between two cards for both of us would be great I'm concerned we will not be able to apply for the new one if we currently hold the current card. Anybody know for sure? Thanks!
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Old Apr 2, 18, 1:17 pm
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Originally Posted by lkar View Post
Legally, I think Chase/IHG is actually on shaky ground not allowing those who applied for the card and received it before the change at least the first anniversary night at any IHG that has standard room availability. Even now, the Chase website has the following language: "After your account anniversary date, you’ll receive an Anniversary Free Night at any of the over 5,000 IHG® hotels worldwide.1 There are no blackout dates and no restrictions. Look for your free night on your IHG Rewards Club account."

The footnote has some reservation language but nowhere suggests that "any of of the over 5,000 IHG hotels worldwide" means "only those at 40,000 points," and I'm not immediately seeing anything that says they can take away the benefit at any time.

Maybe because there is no spend requirement, they can get away with it. But this is a pretty shady business practice to take the first annual fee and not provide the anniversary free night under the terms used to induce people to apply. I applied in October and think this is pretty lame. I actually might consider a CFPB complaint just to see what happens.
I'll be curious to see if that is a good argument. I just applied in February since Hilton raised the spend requirement from $10k to $15k (and I can get better value on a cashback card), so I liked the fact I could use this certificate at a Kimpton or any other IHG property. Guess it will be closed at its first anniversary otherwise. Hard to find any good hotels in major cities charging 40k points or less.
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Old Apr 2, 18, 1:18 pm
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Figured this had to arrive at some point. I mean, there were redemptions that were insane (like $800 nights in Hong Kong) all for a $49 annual fee. That simply makes no sense. I'll still keep my card but surely disappointed (although understand).
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Old Apr 2, 18, 1:24 pm
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Originally Posted by TravelinSperry View Post
Figured this had to arrive at some point. I mean, there were redemptions that were insane (like $800 nights in Hong Kong) all for a $49 annual fee. That simply makes no sense. I'll still keep my card but surely disappointed (although understand).
Yeah, but who travels to HK for one free hotel night? If the free night induces someone to book several additional rates at the going rate, the hotel still wins. [Yes, people on FT would indeed do a MR to HK for one night or do mattress runs, but even those mattress runs tend to be at closer and cheaper cities.
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Old Apr 2, 18, 1:31 pm
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Originally Posted by lkar View Post
Legally, I think Chase/IHG is actually on shaky ground not allowing those who applied for the card and received it before the change at least the first anniversary night at any IHG that has standard room availability. Even now, the Chase website has the following language: "After your account anniversary date, you’ll receive an Anniversary Free Night at any of the over 5,000 IHG® hotels worldwide.1 There are no blackout dates and no restrictions. Look for your free night on your IHG Rewards Club account."

The footnote has some reservation language but nowhere suggests that "any of of the over 5,000 IHG hotels worldwide" means "only those at 40,000 points," and I'm not immediately seeing anything that says they can take away the benefit at any time.

Maybe because there is no spend requirement, they can get away with it. But this is a pretty shady business practice to take the first annual fee and not provide the anniversary free night under the terms used to induce people to apply. I applied in October and think this is pretty lame. I actually might consider a CFPB complaint just to see what happens.
If you do send a complaint, I would be glad to joinas I am in the same position (applied in October)
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Old Apr 2, 18, 2:15 pm
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My wife signed up for this card 5 days ago. Can you say "bait & switch"?

EDIT: We sent a complaint through the secure message center online. At the very least, we should flood them with complaints and demand an explanation.

Last edited by OhDoctor; Apr 2, 18 at 2:29 pm
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Old Apr 2, 18, 3:16 pm
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Originally Posted by lkar View Post
Legally, I think Chase/IHG is actually on shaky ground not allowing those who applied for the card and received it before the change at least the first anniversary night at any IHG that has standard room availability. Even now, the Chase website has the following language: "After your account anniversary date, you’ll receive an Anniversary Free Night at any of the over 5,000 IHG® hotels worldwide.1 There are no blackout dates and no restrictions. Look for your free night on your IHG Rewards Club account."

The footnote has some reservation language but nowhere suggests that "any of of the over 5,000 IHG hotels worldwide" means "only those at 40,000 points," and I'm not immediately seeing anything that says they can take away the benefit at any time.

Maybe because there is no spend requirement, they can get away with it. But this is a pretty shady business practice to take the first annual fee and not provide the anniversary free night under the terms used to induce people to apply. I applied in October and think this is pretty lame. I actually might consider a CFPB complaint just to see what happens.
I'm on the same page as you here. But if you look into the terms and condition clauses. Chase did have this line written. So technically they are covered legally, and are not obliged to comply against your case. Maybe they might provide a 1 off redemption out of goodwill if we complaint, but the policy definitely can't be grandfathered. But let me know your outcome of their resolution when they respond back to you on secure messages.

Anniversary Free Night will be available for redemption on your account renewal anniversary date each year. (“Anniversary” is the date that is twelve months after your enrollment date, and the same date each twelve months thereafter.) Chase may close your credit card account or suspend your right to use your credit card account, at any time for any reason, including account inactivity. You must maintain a current, valid email address in your Member Profile and opt in to receive IHG® Rewards Club Credit Card Offers and Promotions e-communications in order to receive communications regarding your Anniversary 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 is valid for one standard room night rate and applicable taxes only. Rooms are limited, subject to prior sale and availability of allocated resources and may be unavailable during high demand periods. All reservations that will utilize the Anniversary Free Night can be booked online at ihgrewardsclub.com or by calling the IHG® Rewards Club Service center at 1-877-318-5890. Anniversary Free Night may not be transferred, extended beyond the expiration date, redeemed for cash, or re-credited for points. Individual hotel’s cancellation policy applies to the use of the Anniversary Free Night. Cancellation fees apply if cancellation is made outside of the hotel’s cancellation time period.Anniversary Free Night rules and regulations are subject to change.Chase is not responsible for offer fulfillment.
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Old Apr 2, 18, 3:24 pm
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Originally Posted by bluestrudels View Post
I'm on the same page as you here. But if you look into the terms and condition clauses. Chase did have this line written. So technically they are covered legally, and are not obliged to comply against your case. Maybe they might provide a 1 off redemption out of goodwill if we complaint, but the policy definitely can't be grandfathered. But let me know your outcome of their resolution when they respond back to you on secure messages.

Anniversary Free Night will be available for redemption on your account renewal anniversary date each year. (“Anniversary” is the date that is twelve months after your enrollment date, and the same date each twelve months thereafter.) Chase may close your credit card account or suspend your right to use your credit card account, at any time for any reason, including account inactivity. You must maintain a current, valid email address in your Member Profile and opt in to receive IHG® Rewards Club Credit Card Offers and Promotions e-communications in order to receive communications regarding your Anniversary 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 is valid for one standard room night rate and applicable taxes only. Rooms are limited, subject to prior sale and availability of allocated resources and may be unavailable during high demand periods. All reservations that will utilize the Anniversary Free Night can be booked online at ihgrewardsclub.com or by calling the IHG® Rewards Club Service center at 1-877-318-5890. Anniversary Free Night may not be transferred, extended beyond the expiration date, redeemed for cash, or re-credited for points. Individual hotel’s cancellation policy applies to the use of the Anniversary Free Night. Cancellation fees apply if cancellation is made outside of the hotel’s cancellation time period.Anniversary Free Night rules and regulations are subject to change.Chase is not responsible for offer fulfillment.
Ahh, I didn't see that. I'm not looking to be a trailblazer on this one. I'll probably just sit back and see what happens. I can probably still do well with a 40,000 point hotel at $49, but this is sort of a lame thing to do for those who applied in the last year and paid the annual feel with a certain understanding.
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