By Paul Brady
January 29, 2020
Advertisement
Credit: Courtesy of IHG

The IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card may not have the name recognition as big-time travel rewards cards like the American Express Platinum or Chase Sapphire Reserve, but it’s suddenly worth careful consideration if you’re a fan of IHG hotels. This card’s new 140,000-point sign-up bonus is one of the biggest offers we’ve seen in recent memory, and it’s rich enough to score you multiple free nights at hotels you’d actually want to stay at.

It’s also the biggest sign-up bonus that Chase has ever offered on the card, which is aimed at fans of IHG brands, including Holiday Inn, Hotel Indigo, InterContinental, and Kimpton. Since 2019, Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas has also been part of IHG, meaning you should soon be able to redeem those 140,000 points at the hospitality brand that Travel + Leisure readers voted the best in the world in 2019.

To get the massive bonus, new cardholders will need to spend $3,000 in the first three months after opening the account. The card also comes with an $89 annual fee, which is a middle-of-the-road price for a valuable rewards card. (Some have no fee at all, while others, like the Chase Sapphire Reserve, charge as much as $550 a year.) Still, earning a six-figure stash of points for less than $100 is something that rarely happens in the world of rewards cards, where, in recent years, typical bonuses were in the 25,000 to 75,000 range, according to an analysis from CreditCards.com.

Redeeming the points is fairly straightforward. IHG doesn’t have blackout dates, and free stays start at 10,000 points. (Obviously, nicer hotels cost a fair bit more — as much as 70,000 points per night or even higher in certain locations or seasons.) Still, a savvy shopper should be able to score three, four, or even five free nights with that 140,000-point bonus.

The IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card is also handy for those who frequently pay their way at the company’s portfolio of hotels. Guests can earn 10 points for every dollar spent on the card at IHG hotels, plus another 15 points for every dollar as a member holding Platinum Elite status (something that’s included when you have this card). Altogether, that means you’d rack up 2,500 points for every $100 you spend on IHG stays.

However, if you’re not a frequent IHG guest, there might be a better, more universal rewards card out there for you. Cards like the American Express Platinum and Chase Sapphire Reserve do cost more, but both come with more flexible points that can be spent on a variety of hotels and air travel. And while cash-back cards may not come with monster sign-up bonuses, they do deliver something you’ll have no problem redeeming: cold hard cash.