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For years, one of the absolute best deals in travel has been the 5,000 points per night IHG PointsBreak hotel award. These quarterly PointBreaks lists would be met with anticipation and then scoured over by travel deal hunters the world over looking to see where they could stretch their points to the fullest. Sometimes you got lucky and a hotel you needed was on the list for tens of thousands fewer points than normal, but more and more the list wasn’t really all that exciting for 99% of us. It started to look a little bit like the VHS cassette of travel deals. It still worked, sort of, but its peak had passed.
While sad in a nostalgic sort of way, it is in no way surprising that IHG is changing how PointsBreaks operates. Beginning on January 29th, you will be able to select from more than 200 PointBreaks properties that “will include some of the best IHG hotels around the world, including upscale brands InterContinental, Hotel Indigo and Crowne Plaza.” IHG said that they know their customers want PointBreaks available in more cities and in more hotels, so they are nearly doubling the number of hotels available.
The catch? Oh there’s a catch, as PointBreaks will no longer be a flat 5,000 IHG points per night, but instead will be 5,000, 10,000, or 15,000 points per night, depending on the property. You will also be able to use a combination of points and cash to secure a PointBreaks room.
We don’t yet know how good (or not good) their new list will really be, but here’s a sampling of what is coming:
- Holiday Inn® Kuala Lumpur Glenmarie (Malaysia) (5,000 points)
- InterContinental® Nairobi (Kenya) (10,000 points)
- Holiday Inn® San Antonio Northwest (US) (10,000 points)
- InterContinental® Cali (Colombia) (10,000 points)
- Holiday Inn Express® London – Newbury Park (UK) (10,000 points)
- InterContinental® Sao Paolo (Brazil) (15,000 points)
- Holiday Inn® Helsinki City Centre (Finland) (15,000 points)
- Crowne Plaza Berlin – Potsdamer Platz (Germany) (15,000 points)
Booking the Intercontinental Sao Paulo in Brazil for just 5,000 points per night would be way cooler than having to spend 15,000 points per night, but let’s be real… hotels like this haven’t really been on recent PointsBreaks lists. So, while spending 5,000 points is better than spending 15,000 points; 15,000 is still way better than the regular 35,000 points per night rate.
If this new version of IHG PointBreaks makes it possible to book hotels more of us actually want to stay in for less, then I suppose that’s a good thing. There will still be some 5,000 points per night hotels available, though my money is on most of the options being on the higher end of the scale.
A sneak peak of the list will be posted on the IHG blog on tomorrow, Friday, January 26, 2018. Then on Monday, January 29, 2018, at 12PM EST, IHG will post the full PointBreaks list for bookings and stays from January 29, 2018, through April 30, 2018. Of course, I will update all of this here as well.
One thing not covered in the information I received today from IHG is whether any of the Kimpton properties may eventually make it to a PointBreaks list, but I have already sent that question in as I know you must be curious, too.
What do you think about these big IHG PointBreaks changes? Totally horrible news, or a potentially solid adjustment?
Editorial Note: The opinions expressed here are mine and not provided, reviewed, by any bank, card issuer, or other company unless otherwise stated.