IHG has come out with the most interesting promotion for this last quarter, Sept 1 – December 31. It’s called “The Big Win” and each person has a different promotion with tasks, if you will. If you complete a goal, like stay two saturdays or book online, you get a bonus. And if you complete all of your tasks, you get a Big Win bonus amount of points.
The Big Win bonus usually matches the combination of small bonuses you get. For example I get 106,000 points for completing all my tasks, but 53,000 (half) of them are from the Big Win bonus, which comes from completing all of the tasks.
Here is how to analyze if this is a good deal for you.
- Add up all of your bonuses. If you complete all of your tasks, how much are you going to come out with. For me it’s 106,000 points.
- How many nights can you complete it in?I have one goal of 5 nights total, another for two saturdays, and another for staying at different brands. The reality is that I can knock out multiple of these at once. I can stay one saturday at one brand and the other at a different brand. This gets me down to 3 nights.The point is that I can do this in 5 nights.
- Rake in more bonuses. Say 5,000 more points a night.If you haven’t read my post on earning IHG Rewards points on steroids, well you should. Because staying at IHG is already profitable with a good rate. I got over 15,000 points on my last paid stay without any big promotion. You just have to register for as many little promotions as you can and they seriously add up.Maybe you already know how much you earn per night, but if you follow my guide mentioned above, you’ll earn at least another 5,000 points per night.
- Take the number of nights required and multiply that number by 5,000 and add your total. Then divide expected dollar by points.Okay so I can do this in 5 nights, and I’ll get at least an extra 5,000 points per night from little bonuses. So that’s 25,000 points.Then I add the 25,000 to my total from completing the Big Win promotion – 106,000. Which gives me 131,000 points.Then I divide what I pay for a night by 131,000. This is easy to judge if you have some stays coming up. Just go to IHG.com and look at the prices of hotels. I’ll say that I can do each stay for under $100, for sure. So it will be at most $100 for 5 nights to do this thing.$500 / 131,000 = $0.38.
- Take that cents per dollar and multiply it by the number of points for your desired redemption.I spend all my points on PointBreaks hotel usually which costs 5,000 points per night. Actually with 10% rebate of the credit card I think of it as 4,500 points. So for me I’ll multiply .0038 by 4,500. This tells me that a room with PointBreaks will cost me about $17.If your desired stay is somewhere more expensive, like Bora Bora. You’ll need 50,000 points. At this rate, it would be $190.
- Is it doable?One of my stipulations is to complete stays in two of the listed cities (like NYC and DC). Will I be in the area in the next 3 months?
- Is it convenient?Have you factored in that you were going to stay in these hotels anyways?
Reality check – This isn’t buying points this is getting rewarded for stays.
I was going to stay at hotels anyways. It just happens to be that my paid stays lead to cheap points.
I think I can get even better margins.
With AAA, weekend rates and cheap cities I can do this for less than $100 a night.
Heck, I think I can earn more than 5,000 from the tiny bonuses too. More like 10,000 a night.
I think I can get this down to $10 per 5,000 points.
Go ye forth and do likewise. But really, did you get a good offer? Let me know below.