IHG Elite Status

Benefits & How To Qualify

List of IHG Elite Status benefits. Also covers Kimpton Inner Circle and IHG Ambassador Status. Earn bonus points, room upgrades, and more.


The IHG Rewards Club has a 5-tier program consisting of Club, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, Spire Elite, and Kimpton Inner Circle. Each tier offers various benefits including bonus points, check-in/out privileges, room upgrades, and lots more.

If you're a fan of staying at the InterContinental brand, you can purchase an IHG Ambassador Membership. This membership grants you a bunch of special benefits when staying at InterContinental brand hotels and it also gives you complimentary IHG Platinum Elite Status.

How To Qualify

Each tier in the IHG Rewards Club program requires you to have either a certain amount of nights spent at IHG brand hotels or Elite Qualifying Points earned during the calendar year. Once you qualify for a tier, you will be given the benefits of that tier for the remainder of the calendar year and the subsequent year. You will need to re-qualify for elite status every year just like other hotel rewards programs.

Nights

A night at an IHG brand hotel is considered to be one overnight stay. So if you were to check-in on Monday and check-out on Friday, you would earn 4 nights since you stayed overnight Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Friday would not count because you did not stay overnight.

Elite Qualifying Points

Elite Qualifying Points with IHG are earned in several ways:

  • Qualifying Rates paid for hotel says
  • Spend on IHG Rewards Club credit cards
  • Spend on select partner activity
  • IHG Rewards Club Bonus Points or Miles Packages
  • Qualified Spend through IHG Business Rewards

IHG Points earned from Elite Status, IHG promotions, partner promotions, point vouchers, and buying/transferring points does not count as Elite Qualifying Points. Earning IHG Status via Elite Qualifying Points is great for those who don't spend lots of nights at IHG, but tend to spend a lot of money with IHG.

IHG Club Members

When you sign up for an IHG Rewards Club account, you will automatically become an IHG Club member. This will grant you to a few useful benefits that makes it worth signing up for a free account.

IHG Club Member Benefits

  • Earn & Redeem IHG Points
  • Earn Airline Miles
  • IHG Member Rates
  • Complimentary WiFi

Earn & Redeem IHG Points

You'll be able to earn IHG Points once you sign up for an account. You can earn IHG Points in a number of ways including:

You'll also be able to redeem your IHG Points. You'll get the best value out of your points using them for reward nights at IHG hotels, but you can also use them for a bunch of other things.

Earn Airline Miles

If you're not fond of earning IHG Points, you can set your earning preferences to earn airline miles with your favorite airline. I recommend earning IHG Points the normal way and then transferring them to any of their 35+ transfer partners when you need to. This gives you a wider option in the case that you may want to fly a different airline.

IHG Member Rates

Keep a little bit of money in your pocket with IHG's member rates. As a member, you'll save a few dollars off the room rate. Depending on how often you stay at IHG hotels, this can add up really fast.

Complimentary WiFi

No one wants to pay for WiFi. So avoid the fee when you sign up for a free IHG account and stay connected with the world!

Earn up to 8x IHG Points dining out at your favorite restaurants with the IHG Rewards Club Dining Program.

IHG Gold Elite

IHG Gold Elite status is the second tier in the IHG Rewards Club Program. This tier offers bonus points, check-out/check-in benefits, and a welcome amenity.

How To Qualify For IHG Gold Elite

You can qualify for IHG Gold Elite status by meeting one of the following requirements:

  • 10 Qualifying Nights at IHG Properties
  • 10,000 Elite Qualifying Points
  • Be A IHG Traveler Card member

You'll receive complimentary IHG Gold Elite status by just being an IHG Traveler Card member. The card has no annual fee which makes it a great way to easily maintain status in the IHG Rewards Club program.

IHG Gold Elite Benefits

  • 10% Bonus Points
  • Welcome Amenity/Raid the Bar at Kimpton Hotels
  • Priority Check-in
  • Extended Check-Out
  • Points Don't Expire
  • Benefits of IHG Club member

10% Bonus Points

You'll earn an additional 10% bonus points on top of the base points you earn staying at IHG hotels. This gives you to an additional 1 point per $1 spent staying at most IHG hotels.

Welcome Amenity/Raid The Bar

When staying at IHG brand hotels that aren't under the Kimpton brand, you will receive a welcome amenity when you arrive at the hotel. This will typically be something specific to the area of the hotel or some type of beverage, food, or spa credit.

Raid The Bar, at Kimpton Hotels, is a $10 USD credit to spend at a restaurant bar or on the in-room bar during qualified stays.

Priority Check-In

Check-in faster with Priority check-in as an IHG Gold Elite member. This can be a useful benefit for skipping the line during busy times.

Extended Check-Out

As an IHG Gold Elite member, you will be able to push back your check-out time. Do note that this benefit may not be available in all regions and that it is subject to availability, so be aware of that.

Points Don't Expire

Your IHG Points will be safe in your account once you obtain IHG Gold Elite as they will not expire. This is another great reason for having an IHG Credit Card as it can keep your account opened without you worrying about losing IHG Points.

IHG Platinum Elite

IHG Platinum Elite is the third tier in the IHG Rewards Club Program. It bumps up the bonus points significantly, adds in complimentary room upgrades, and guaranteed room availability.

How To Qualify For IHG Platinum Elite

You can qualify for IHG Platinum Elite status by meeting one of the following requirements:

The IHG Premier Card will grant you complimentary Platinum Elite status which takes the pressure off you having to stay for 40 nights or earn 40,000 Elite Qualifying Points. The card itself offers an annual free night which, in my opinion, makes the card worth picking up.

IHG Platinum Elite Benefits

  • 50% Bonus Points
  • Elite Rollover Nights
  • Complimentary Room Upgrades
  • Guaranteed Room Availability

50% Bonus Points

As an IHG Platinum Elite member, you'll earn a 50% bonus on top of your base points. This gives you up to an additional 5 IHG Points per $1 spent at most IHG brand hotels for a total of up to 15 IHG Points.

Elite Rollover Nights

Once you obtain IHG Platinum Elite, you'll be able to use the Elite Rollover Nights perk. This perk rolls over your unused nights. So if you ended the year with 50 qualifying nights at IHG, you would earn IHG Platinum Elite status due to making it past 40 and you would start the next year with the 10 nights left over. This is a great benefit offered by many hotel programs and it allows you to reach status a little easier the following year.

Complimentary Room Upgrade

Everyone enjoys getting bumped up to a better room. As an IHG Platinum Elite, you'll receive complimentary room upgrades when staying at IHG brand hotels (non-Kimpton). Upgrades are determined by the hotel and will usually be:

  • On Higher Floors
  • Corner Rooms
  • Newly Renovated Rooms
  • Rooms With Preferred Views

When staying at Kimpton brand hotels, you'll be guaranteed a one category upgrade.

Guaranteed Room Availability

As an IHG Platinum Elite or higher, you will be guaranteed a room for reservations made at least 72 hours prior to the date of arrival. There are a few caveats to this benefit such as reward nights not applying and extraordinary room demand as determined by the hotel.

IHG Spire Elite

The fourth tier in the IHG Rewards Club program is IHG Spire Elite. Spire offers the maximum amount of bonus points, early check-in, and even complimentary elite status with Hertz.

How To Qualify For IHG Spire Elite

You can qualify for IHG Spire Elite status by meeting one of the following requirements:

  • 75 Qualifying Nights at IHG Properties
  • 75,000 Elite Qualifying Points

There's no shortcuts to obtaining IHG Spire Elite with credit cards. There has been times in which IHG has randomly given out IHG Spire status which I received at the end of 2019 after only having one IHG stay for the year. So IHG can be pretty giving at times.

IHG Spire Elite Benefits

  • 100% Bonus Points
  • Early Check-In
  • Choice Benefit Upon Receiving Status
  • Hertz Gold Plus Rewards Five Star

100% Bonus Points

You'll be swimming in points as an IHG Spire Elite because you'll earn 100% bonus points on top of the base points you would normally earn. This means you can earn up to 20x IHG Points at most IHG brand hotels. Pair this with the IHG Premier Credit Card and you're looking at 30 IHG Points per $1 spent which is superb.

Early Check-In

As an IHG Spire Elite member, you'll be able to check-in as early as 10am. This can be a great benefit if you end up in town early.

I selected the 25,000 IHG Points for my Spire Elite Choice Benefit.

Choice Benefit

Once you obtain IHG Spire Elite status, you'll be given the chance to either select 25,000 bonus points or gift Platinum Elite to a family member or friend. Personally, I would opt for the 25,000 bonus points. A friend or family member can pick up IHG Platinum Elite by grabbing up the IHG Premier Card.

Hertz Gold Plus Rewards Five Star

You will receive complimentary Hertz Gold Plus Rewards Five Star Status once you obtain IHG Spire Elite status. Five Star Status comes with bonus Hertz Points, car upgrades, the ability to transfer Hertz Points to partners, and more.

Kimpton Inner Circle

The highest tier in the IHG Rewards Club program is Kimpton Inner Circle. This tier offers all the benefits of IHG Spire along with additional benefits when staying at Kimpton Hotels.

How To Qualify For Kimpton Inner Circle

Kimpton Inner Circle is extended by invitation only and is only given to the most loyal of Kimpton guests. You'll need to at have IHG Spire Elite and stay frequently at Kimpton hotels to qualify. There's no exact qualifications.

Kimpton Inner Circle Benefits

  • Inner Circle Amenity
  • Chef's Taste
  • New Hotel Night
  • Premium Internet
  • VIP Phone Line
  • Room Upgrade
  • Check-In/Out Privileges
  • Waived Amenity Fee
  • Benefits of IHG Spire Elite

Inner Circle Amenity

As a Kimpton Inner Circle member, you'll receive a customized amenity that includes a favorite snack and beverage during each qualifying stay. You can set your preferences when you log into your IHG Rewards Club account.

Chef's Taste

You'll be able to enjoy a small complimentary taste from the chef when dining at a Kimpton Restaurant as an Inner Circle member. You don't need to be staying at the hotel to receive the benefit and it's only available during dinner hours. Do note that a few hotels do not participate.

New Hotel Night

Everyone enjoy new hotel smell! You'll be able to book a free night at a new Kimpton Hotel assuming you're a current Inner Circle member with at least 3 qualified nights completed within the last 12 months. This will apply to locations in North America and your IHG Spire Elite status will make you eligible for a room upgrade too!

kimpton restaurants
Kimpton has restaurants scattered around the world.

Premium Internet

You'll receive the fastest and best internet available at the hotel as a Kimpton Inner Circle member.

VIP Phone Line

If you have questions about the hotel, reservations, Spire Elite or Inner Circle benefits, and anything else IHG or Kimpton, you can call the VIP Phone Line.

Room Upgrade

As a Kimpton Inner Circle member, you'll receive a one category room upgrade higher than what you booked. This benefit is not subject to availability, it is a guaranteed benefit. These upgrades exclude Presidential, Specialty Suites and all suites with two bedrooms or more.

Check-In/Out Privileges

Check-in early and check-out late as a Kimpton Inner Circle member. You'll receive guaranteed 10am early check-in as well as 4pm guaranteed check-out at no extra charge.

Waived Amenity Fee

The guest amenity and destination fees will be waived as a Kimpton Inner Circle member. Do note that this does not include resort fees.

IHG Ambassador Membership

IHG Ambassador Membership is a special tier that is best for those who spend a lot of their time at the InterContinental brand hotels. It offers room upgrades, late check-out, credits, and lots more.

How To Get IHG Ambassador Membership

IHG Ambassador Membership costs $200 USD. It cannot be obtained with nights or Elite Qualifying Points. This membership is in addition to your IHG Elite Status or Kimpton Inner Circle status. It is possible to have all three to receive the ultimate in benefits.

IHG Ambassador Benefits

  • Guaranteed Room Upgrade
  • Guaranteed Extended 4pm Check-Out
  • Complimentary Weekend Night
  • Complimentary Platinum Elite Status
  • Restaurant & Bar Credits
  • Complimentary Water
  • Dedicated Check-In Area
  • Single Room Rate for Double Occupancy
  • China-Specific Benefits

Guaranteed Room Upgrade

As an IHG Ambassador member, you will receive a guaranteed one category room upgrade upon check-in. Depending on the hotels you're staying at, this benefit can be worth the membership price if you pick your rooms with respect to this upgrade benefit.

Guaranteed Extended 4pm Check-Out

You'll be able to check out as late as 4pm when staying at InterContinental brands as an IHG Ambassador member.

Weekend Night

You'll receive a complimentary weekend night as an IHG Ambassador member. The weekend night is valid on the second night of a paid weekend stay. This is another benefit that can easily be worth more than the membership fee if you stay even a few times at InterContinental hotels.

Platinum Elite Status

You'll receive complimentary IHG Platinum Elite Status when you obtain IHG Ambassador membership which gives you a bunch of other useful benefits that stacks on top of your membership.

Restaurant & Bar Credits

For every stay at an InterContinental hotel as an IHG Ambassador member, you will receive up to $20 USD (or equivalent in local currency) in restaurant & bar credits for every stay.

In mainland China, you will be given a 15% discount at select hotel restaurants and bars instead of the $20 USD credit. IHG Spire members will also receive an RMB120 credit in addition to the discount.

Complimentary Water

When you check into an InterContinental hotel, you'll receive a complimentary bottle of mineral water. It seems like a small perk, but it's the little things that count when you're thirsty.

Complimentary Internet

You'll receive complimentary internet as an IHG Ambassador member. All of IHG's statuses and membership offer the benefit, so this is an overlapping benefit.

Dedicated Check-In Area

You'll be able to check-in quicker as an IHG Ambassador member thanks to the dedicated check-in area.

Single Room Rate

You'll be able to enjoy the single room rate when you book a double occupancy room. This can save a decent amount of money as the single room rate is notably cheaper.

China Specific Benefits

When staying at an InterContinental Hotel in mainland China, you'll receive complimentary breakfast for one each night you stay.

  • In Greater China, Platinum Elite and Spire Elite members will receive a welcome fruit platter.
  • Summary

    The IHG Rewards Club program offers a bunch of benefits across their 5-tier rewards program. Being able to purchase additional benefits for InterContinental hotel stays can also be a big plus if you enjoy staying at the brand.

    If you're trying to shortcut your way to IHG Gold Elite or IHG Platinum Elite status, I recommend taking a look at the IHG Credit Cards. You can compare both IHG credit cards side by side based on your spend, how much each benefit is worth to you, and the annual fee to find out which card is best.

    If you're looking for more ways to earn IHG Points, you can checkout the details on the IHG Rewards Club Dining Program which allows you to earn up to 8x IHG Points dining out at your favorite restaurants.

    IHG Elite Status FAQ

    How do you get elite status with IHG?

    Elite status is obtained after earning a certain amount of nights spent or Elite Qualifying Points with IHG during the calendar year.

    What is IHG Platinum Elite status?

    IHG Platinum Elite Status is the 3rd tier in the IHG Rewards Club Program. It offers 50% bonus points, complimentary room upgrades, and much more.

    How do you get IHG Platinum Elite status?

    You can obtain IHG Platinum Elite status with 40 qualifying nights at IHG hotels or 40,000 Elite Qualifying Points during the calendar year. You can also obtain it by owning the IHG Premier Card or having IHG Ambassador Membership.

    Can you shortcut to IHG Spire Elite status?

    No. You will have to earn IHG Spire Elite status by staying 75 nights at IHG hotels or earning 75,000 Elite Qualifying Points during the calendar year.

    How do you earn Elite Qualifying Points with IHG?

    Elite Qualifying Points with IHG are earned on qualifying rates paid for hotel stays, spend on IHG credit cards, spend on select partner activity, IHG Rewards Club bonus points or miles packages, and qualified spend through IHG Business Rewards.

    How much is IHG Ambassador Membership?

    IHG Ambassador Membership is $200 USD.

    Is IHG Ambassador Membership worth the cost?

    If you stay at the InterContinental brand several times per year, yes the membership can be worth it.

    Is Kimpton part of IHG?

    Yes. Kimpton became part of IHG in early 2015.

    What is Kimpton Inner Circle?

    Kimpton Inner Circle is an invitation only status to IHG Spire Members that frequently stay at Kimpton brand hotels.

    What is Raid The Bar at IHG hotels?

    Raid the bar provides Platinum and Spire Elite members $10 credit to spend at restaurant bar or in-room bars during stays at Kimpton brand hotels.

    Is the IHG Rewards Club program free?

    Yes, the IHG Rewards Club program is free to sign up for. IHG Ambassador is the only membership that costs.

    Will I have elite status with IHG Ambassador?

    The IHG Ambassador Membership offers complimentary IHG Platinum Elite status.

    What tiers are in the IHG Rewards Club loyalty program?

    IHG has 5-tiers which are Member, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, Spire Elite, and Kimpton Inner Circle.

    Can you obtain Kimpton Inner Circle without Spire Elite status?

    No, you typically need to be an IHG Spire Elite member and frequently stay at Kimpton Hotels in order to be invited to be a Kimpton Inner Circle member.


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