Chase & IHG Honor Uncapped Free Night Through May 2019

IHG Free Night Uncapped
The InterContinental Cali hotel

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Back in April, IHG announced major changes to the free anniversary night certificate offered on their co-branded credit card. Before this change, the free anniversary night had no cap which meant you could use it at any property in the IHG portfolio. Considering the credit card has an annual fee of just $49 that is a great deal.

With the change, you can now only redeem your free night certificate at properties retailing for up to 40,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night. This is still a good deal, but considering IHG has properties in their portfolio going for 70,000 points, it is a devaluation nonetheless.

When they first made the announcement of the devaluation, they indicated they would honor the uncapped anniversary free night certificate for the first year for those who opened the card between January 1st and April 5th, 2018.

Chase and IHG took a lot of heat for this as it didn’t particularly make sense. Essentially, anybody who opened the IHG co-branded credit card between April 2017 and December of 2017 wouldn’t ever get an uncapped free night certificate which was clearly stated on the application for the credit card product. Not honoring a benefit you are offering at the time of card application isn’t right.


Chase and IHG Do the Right Thing

Confirmed via Twitter on Friday afternoon, Chase & IHG are indeed straightening this out and doing the right thing. Free night certificates issued before May 1st, 2019 will, in fact, be uncapped and thus can be used at any IHG property in their portfolio. 

I am glad to see Chase & IHG backtracking on this. As stated above, the previous ruling didn’t make any sense and likely upset a lot of people who opened the IHG Rewards Club Select credit card for this reason alone.

Thrifty Tip: Need some advice on the best ways to use your free night certificate before 2019? See our post on the best uses of the IHG Free Anniversary Night.


IHG Free Night Uncapped


Bottom Line

This is a great development, and one that I think is the right thing to do on Chase’s side. Taking away benefits from consumers they think they are getting when applying for a card before they ever receive it is a questionable decision. It would now appear that Chase agrees.


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H/T: One Mile at a Time

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews, or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

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