Ric Garrido of the Loyalty Travel Blog has done a three part series on how he determines when to use his Hilton points and when to pay cash. Ric is a specialist in hotel redemption’s and especially in the higher end hotels, and he knows a decent value for his points.
Ric’s basic premise is: if you are receiving $7 in value for every 1,000 Hilton Honors points, you are getting an excellent value for your points. His math correlates with my feeling that Hilton Honors points are worth .7 cents each to me, as that is the rate at which I will redeem my Hilton Honors points.
And if you follow his analysis further, you will see some of the best redemption values are at the lower end of the category scale.
If there is a way you can bookmark this page or better yet, Ric’s 3 page spread, it will serve you well in the future when deciding: Do I pay Cash? or Use my Points?
IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card
- Annual Fee: $49 fee waived for the first year
- Foreign Fees: No
- Card Type: Hotel
The IHG Rewards Club Visa is often cited as one of the most underrated hotel credit cards, with good reason. The official offer is for 70,000 points after $1,000 spent within three months, with the first year’s fee waived. The card comes with an annual free night certificate that can be used at any IHG property, including Intercontinental hotels - making this certificate worth upwards of 50,000 points. This is far more generous than some other hotel cards, which limit the categories in which free night certificates can be redeemed.
Cardholders earn 5 points per dollar at IHG hotels; 2 points per dollar at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants; 1 point per dollar everywhere else. Moreover, you’ll get a 10% rebate on award redemptions, up to 100,000 points per year. The card also comes with Platinum status, though that doesn’t get you much with IHG. Still, this is a fantastic card to have in your wallet, with benefits that far outweigh the already low $49 annual fee.
- Earn 70,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months of account opening
- Enjoy a free night of card membership at over 4,700 hotels worldwide
- Earn 5 points for each $1 spent at our hotels
- Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants
- Bonus points redeemable at hotels such as Intercontinental® Hotels & Resorts, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts and Holiday Inn®
- Automatic platinum elite status, as long as you remain a cardmember
- $0 introductory annual fee the first year, then $49