Update: Reader AF shared a link to a Deals We Like post on how to earn a minimum of 47,000 IHG points for $46 during the Priceless Surprises promotion – without actually booking any hotel stays! As reader Graydon points you, you can reduce the cost further by signing up for a Stamps.com account and getting $5 worth of free stamps.
You have to give IHG Rewards Club credit for coming up with fun and engaging promotions. The latest one, called Priceless Surprises, is pretty interesting. Registered members who use a MasterCard to book and stayed at an IHG hotel between November 15, 2015 – February 15, 2016 receive 1,000 bonus points on their first stay and one of the following “surprises” on their second stay:
- Priceless trips to New York City, Orlando or Paris
- One million IHG Rewards Club Points
- $50 prepaid MasterCard gift card
- A free night at any IHG hotel in the world … and more
You’ll continue to earn surprise up until your sixth stay. It’s worth noting that guests can check out up to February 29, as long as they have checked in for their stay by February 15, 2016. The great thing is that this promotion can be stacked with IHG’s Accelerate promotion, which lets registered members earn an easy 41,800 points and free nights through the end of the year.
I’m kind of tempted to set up a mattress run just to find out what type of surprise I might get. Even if it’s just a $50 MasterCard, that can actually work out well since hotels like the Candlewood Suites Dallas Park Central have rates under $50 per night (including tax) on some weekends. If I were to book two nights at under $100, that $50 MasterCard gift card (assuming that’s the minimum “surprise”) would cover the cost of the second night and I’d only be out $50 for this experiment. The obvious choice of MasterCard would be the Barclay Arrival Plus World Elite credit card, since I could cover the cost of the mattress run with Arrival Miles. Two trips to my local grocery store, $4,500 worth of Visa gift card purchases, $53.55 in gift card purchase fees and I’d have enough miles to cover both nights for half the cost of a paid stay.
If you’re going to participate in this promotion, it’s important to note the terms, which state:
“ Open only to MasterCard® individual and small business cardholders whose account was opened by a MasterCard customer financial institution before November 15, 2015 and is still active, who are legal permanent residents of the 50 United States (D.C) who are at least 21 years old and the age of majority at the time of entry, and who register for the Instant Win Game, and are enrolled in the IHG® Rewards Club program.
So if you don’t have an eligible MasterCard and decide to pick one up some time between now and February, keep in mind that it will have to be before November 15 to ensure you’re eligible for the Priceless Surprises promotion. That gives you roughly two weeks, which is plenty of time to pick up a Barclay Arrival Plus card.
Do I think IHG’s Priceless Surprises promotion is mattress run worthy? I definitely think it’s fun and intriguing. I’m not earning Arrival miles at the rate I used to, but it might be worth a couple of extra trips to Safeway to get 50% off the cost of mattress running for this promotion. Besides, it’s just two nights.
Are you considering a quick mattress run for IHG’s Priceless Surprises promotion?
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