IHG Rewards has extended its Fast Track to Gold or Platinum status promotion. Registration will remain open until November 30th, 2021.
Once you have registered, you have 90 days to complete:
- 2 paid nights for Gold status
- 5 paid nights for Platinum status (i.e. 3 more)
Your new level of status will be valid until December 2022.
The only potential stumbling block is that those paid nights must cost more than $30 per night. Award nights definitely do NOT count (including Points + Cash nights where you are actually buying points as part of the reservation).
Click here to register. (or to read the full terms & conditions)
An Even Faster Way to IHG Platinum Status
If you have five paid nights planned at an IHG hotel, then you certainly might want to consider the fast track. But if you think that you might visit an Intercontinental hotel in 2021 or 2022, then you will actually want to sign up to Ambassador.
To become an Ambassador member, you simply pay $200 or 40,000 IHG points at any time and your Ambassador status will be valid for a year. Ambassador is only useful at Intercontinental branded hotels, but it comes with instant Platinum status in IHG Rewards valid for the rest of the calendar year and all of the next.
The Ambassador program also comes with a certificate valid for one free weekend night when booking a 2+ night stay – this can be quite valuable if used strategically!
A Possible Travel Hack
Now that this fast track promotion allows you to register until November 30th, your 90-day window could potentially stretch into early 2022.
I know that the Terms & Conditions make clear that your new Platinum status will only be valid until December 2022. BUT, I have a feeling that… IF you complete that 5th night in early 2022, there is every chance that your status will become valid for the rest of 2022 and ALL of 2023.
I’m just guessing though… but unless you already have all five nights planned for this fall, there’s no harm in taking a very strategic view of completing the five night requirement. You might get lucky!
Is Gold or Platinum Status Worthwhile?
Not really… some hotels choose to be generous with Platinum members but you will NOT receive any valuable guaranteed benefits (such as breakfast or lounge access).
The best benefit of Platinum status is the 50% bonus points on paid stays. These can definitely add up, especially if you don’t care much about elite perks (many business travellers already have an employer or client paying for meals and/or lounge access.)
Nonetheless, it’s still better to be Platinum than a nobody when staying at an IHG hotel…