Analysis: IHG Accelerate promo vs Buying points outright

by Anshul
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IHG Accelerate Fall 2016 promotion was recently launched and there has been a flurry of offer comparisons on various platforms. Since each account is targeted with a personalized offer, its hard to make an absolute judgement on the promotion but by and large the sentiment seems to be ‘its not as good as last year’. You can check your personalized offer by clicking here.

IHG Accelerate Fall 2016 Offer

My account was targeted with 67,200 bonus points.

My offer: 67200 bonus

My offer: 67200 bonus

I would need 6 nights across 3 brands with one stay in September to achieve the maximum bonus. 6 nights is a lot of $$! Alternatively, I could stay at 3 IHG brands (3 nights) and potentially earn 58,200 points. That seems reasonable.

My wife’s account was targeted for 36K bonus points with a simple requirement of 2 stays. Very doable.

Wife's account targeted for 36K with 2 stays

Wife’s account targeted for 36K with 2 stays


IHG points purchase Sale

Simultaneously, IHG is running a points purchase sale which offers up to 80% bonus until September 9, 2016.

Case 1: If I buy the 67,200 miles outright via this promotion, it would cost me $437 US (68,400 points @ 0.63 CPM) which will likely be cheaper than staying 6 nights (assuming avg. $90/night, 0.8 CPM) at a lower end IHG property. Buying points is better.

Case 2: However, if I choose to stay 3 nights across 3 brands and earn 58,200 bonus points via accelerate promo, its likely cheaper (assuming avg. $90/night, 0.46 CPM) than purchasing them at $379.50 US (59,400 points @ 0.63 CPM). Participating in accelerate promo is better. 

Points purchase sale, 80% bonus

Points purchase sale, 80% bonus

Case 3: Through my wife’s account, we can earn 36K with 2 stays (2 nights). 36K via points sale would cost $250 US. Assuming avg. rate of  $90/night, @0.5 CPM, we are better off with the accelerate promotion. 

Points purchase sale, 80% bonus

Points purchase sale, 80% bonus


Take Away:

Depending on the promotion your account has been targeted for, and with specific use in mind, both promotions have merit. Golden rule is to not purchase points unless you plan to use it within 6-8 months. Likewise, IHG accelerate program is useful if you have stays coming up that can satisfy the requirements for the bonus points. I value IHG points at 0.6 US CPM and have a few stays coming up which can fetch my account 58,200 and my wife’s account another 36,000 via the IHG accelerate promotion.

How do you evaluate your participation in a promotion like this? Share with a comment below. 

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