This week’s Deal Dispatch brings you an update on IHG Rewards Club’s latest devaluation – you have a few days to book hotels at the old rates, so be quick. There are also fare sales at Alitalia for global travel and at Singapore Airlines for flights from the Philippines, so lots of ways to save money this week!
Hotels: Every year, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) changes the award categories of their hotels in the IHG Rewards Club program to adjust for changes in prices and occupation rates. While that is not so different from market price changes for cash rates and only affects less than 10% of properties, this year’s change includes the introduction of two new reward categories at the top end and raises of up to 20% for some of the most desirable properties! In total, 400 hotels are changing category, with 200 hotels getting cheaper or going down in category and 200 hotels going up in category. While that sounds like a pretty even change, it’s mostly cheap hotels going down and very nice, desirable hotels for awards going up. Some of the best hotels, like the InterContinental Thalasso Bora Bora, the InterConti Hong Kong, InterConti New York Times Square and InterConti San Francisco, are going up from 50,000 to 60,000 points. A number of others (Rome, Sydney, Washington DC) go from 50,000 to 55,000. That makes it a lot harder to redeem at these properties. Fortunately, you have till February, 17th 2016 to make reservations at the old rates. If you have plans for a redemption, you should check out the full list now to see if you should book or wait! I will re-evaluate the value of IHG Rewards Club points shortly and update my program review – they are certainly worth less to me now and it reinforces the recommendation, to “earn and burn” your points and miles and not to horde them!
Flights: Singapore Airlines (SQ) has been in the Philippines for 50 years and is celebrating the anniversary with a great fare sale. SQ is usually pretty stingy with fare sales – their fare prices are usually still higher than other airlines’ regular fares – but this sale is different and you should jump on it while it lasts! From February 1-29 you can book flights for travel until December 31, 2016 at much reduced prices in Economy, Premium Economy and Business Class! I have checked for a few fares across Asia and to Australia, and the fares ARE often the lowest in the market! Getting one of the best airlines at the lowest price is a rare opportunity, so you should book now! Find all the sales fares here!
Alitalia is also launching a fare sale for departures from Europe. With fares like Frankfurt – Sao Paulo from EUR545 or Frankfurt – Buenos Aires from EUR645, you get some good fares for routes that are typically very expensive – be quick, the sale is ending soon, book here!