Crazy Expensive IHG Anniversary Free Night We’re Not Booking

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With Kim’s IHG Chase credit card Anniversary Free Night expiring at the end of 2014, I’ve been trying to figure out how we should redeem it.

Each year one Anniversary Free Night is earned on your card’s renewal anniversary. The free night is good for one year and is a relative bargain since all you are paying is the $49 annual fee.

In the recent years we’ve used our Chase free nights in Singapore and Japan. With one night pricing in the $200+ range, this makes keeping the IHG card a great deal and a card that I don’t see myself cancelling.

Chase IHG Credit CardSince we only have one more trip coming up in 2014 I wasn’t sure what to do with Kim’s free night. We’re not going to fly somewhere just to redeem our free hotel night (although the idea was briefly talked about).

In order for us to consider the Chase Anniversary Free Night a great deal, we have to feel like we are truly coming out ahead.

This could mean for some of you, getting a room with a value of at least $49. However, nobody wants to break even and it’s highly unlikely that any of you would try to find such a cheap room.

So what about a room that goes for $100. Is that a good value for the annual fee? $300?

You get the idea.

With no availability at our final 2014 destination, I started looking into some ideas on how to use the certificate. The key was to still feel like there was some value involved.

I thought maybe a one night stay at a nice hotel in Philadelphia would work or possibly at some other close destination.

Rooms in Philadelphia didn’t seem too appealing nor did other areas within a 2 hour drive.

I then decided to check on spending a night in NYC. (Totally unnecessary but maybe a fun idea).

I plugged in a few dates and saw rooms going for between $200 to mid $300 per night. This might be a good option but then I had a better idea.

Would there be a room available with a Free Anniversary Night in NYC to book for New Years Eve? If so, what would the room be valued at.

I did a search and found availability at one IHG property.

Chase IHG Credit Card

The Hotel Indigo in Chelsea was available on New Years Eve with our Free Anniversary Night.

The Indigo usually goes for something like $250 per night. However, for NYE, our mock booking showed that rooms were selling for (from) $1,999.00!

Talk about an insane amount of money just to stay in a hotel in the city.

We’re not interested in being in New York City for New Years Eve. Being home in Brooklyn is close enough for us. However, this would’ve definitely been an interesting way to use our free night.

Imagine a $49 annual fee getting you a hotel which costs $1,999! Pretty solid return if you ask me.

Feel free to share how you usually spend your Chase Anniversary Free Night?

13 thoughts on “Crazy Expensive IHG Anniversary Free Night We’re Not Booking

  1. Missed the new year’s eve on IHG HK, have to redeem Hyatt HK for that. I reserved Jan 1st-Jan 2nd for the free night in HK, still not that bad.

  2. We actually used our 2 free nights from the Hyatt CC to book the Hyatt Times Square for NYE last year. The room was going for almost $700 per night and it wasn’t actually even 12/31. Great return. We then booked the DT on TS for 12/31 when the Hilton website messed up and put it up for 50k per night. I think those were around $7,000 per night. Best free trip ever.

  3. Ray- Sounds pretty good to me!

    FreeTravelGuys- Very nice!

    Tom- If you’re interested in spending NYE in NYC then the IHG Free Nights is definitely a great way to save a ton of $$$!

  4. There really is not a decent IHG property in Philadelphia. There a few good ones in terms of location, but nothing is very nice or aspirational.

  5. As fellow New Yorker, I highly recommend using the Intercontinental Times Square for your free night. The rooms are modern, spacious and beautiful, the bed is one of the most comfy I’ve ever slept in and the staff is top-notch. As a platinum member (via the credit card), I’ve even been offered the perk of $15 in mini-bar credit. BTW, during Christmas week, the rates are often over $500 plus tax, so you’ll still be getting great value even if it’s not New Year’s Eve.

  6. Years ago, when I lived in NYC, the last place I wanted to be on New Year’s Eve was Times Square — cold, crowds, muggers, cosbys, etc. Now when I’m living 800 miles away, it seems strangely attractive. Thanks for giving me a great idea to burn those (nasty) free nights! It really sounds like fun!

  7. Nathan- IHG’s Philly properties sure did seem to be underwhelming…

    PSL- This is great to hear! The room has been booked already and I’ll be writiing about it very soon. We’ll be out of the country Christmas week. Otherwise we would’ve used the redemption that week.

    Enjoy Fine Food- Really glad to help! I agree with your feeling about Times Square on NYE and almost any other time of year but I do think it could be fun to stay there and play tourist.

  8. I recently called IHG. They confirmed they will now let you make a non refundable redemption with the IHG Chase certificate after it’s one -year expiration. However, if a room is booked after the one-year expiration, you can’t change your plans and re-book the certificate. This new benefit lets you book two back-to-back nights with just one iHG Chase Mastercard …two nights for just $98.

  9. William Charles- Definitely an interesting idea! For Kim’s night, if it didn’t sell, we’d have to either use it or lose it otherwise an interesting option. Have you sold any reservations through Roomer?

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