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There’s one credit card I had to cancel that still haunts me today – the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card. In general, I don’t like canceling credit cards, but prefer to downgrade them to a no annual fee credit card or receive a retention to keep them open.
But when I do cancel a card, I will move over my existing credit limit to another card (if possible) so that my credit utilization stays the same. That way, I keep my existing credit as a bargaining chip during the reconsideration process if I need it. Also, canceling a credit card won’t hurt your average age of account as long as it’s not your oldest card. A canceled credit card will stay on your credit report for 10 years.
I canceled my IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card because I had applied for the Ink card from Chase when there was a limited time offer, and they didn’t want to open up another credit card account for me without having me close a current one first. They wouldn’t even let me move around some existing credit. I respect that, but in hindsight, I would’ve closed a different card. But this was a few years back, and we all make mistakes…
Why I’m bummed that I closed my IHG card
Annual free night certificate
I’m mainly bummed that I canceled my IHG because it comes with a free annual certificate, and the annual fee is only $49. I was basically paying $49 a year for a nice stay at an Intercontinental property.
Yup, the annual certificate would’ve enabled me to stay at some awesome properties, like the Mark Hopkins in San Francisco that I stayed at a couple of years ago. There’s also the Venetian or Palazzo in Las Vegas, Intercontinental in Paris, and the ever-popular Intercontinental in Bora Bora.
Of course, you can always use your IHG free award certificate at a Holiday Inn, and it will still offset the $49 annual fee. I know a lot of families that spread our their IHG points by staying at lower level Holiday Inn, Staybridge, or Candlewood properties.
It’s also worth mentioning that the IHG Rewards Club program is a transfer partner of Chase’s Ultimate Rewards. So you can top off your IHG account if you hold an Ink card or Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.
Platinum status with the IHG isn’t the best elite status, but it’s free with the IHG Rewards Club card. I like free status. Platinum status with the IHG card also allowed me to get a status match trial a couple of years ago with Hyatt.
IHG Platinum status benefits are:
- Free internet
- Rollover your extra nights towards next year’s qualification
- Priority Check-in on guaranteed reservations
- Complimentary room upgrades (Subject to availability)
- Guaranteed room availability (72 hours in advance)
- 50% bonus on base points
- Access to exclusive Platinum Elite Phone Number
As you can see, nothing too sexy, but I have received room upgrades on all my IHG hotel stays with Platinum status. And I always enjoy a priority check-in, and free internet.
10% Redemption bonus
I love an award rebate! And you receive 10% back on all IHG award redemptions if you hold the IHG hotel card. Score.
There are also no foreign transaction fees, and you earn 2x points per $1 on gas, groceries, and restaurants. That said, I would rather earn 2x Ultimate Rewards points on dining with my Sapphire Preferred, which earns Ultimate Rewards points that transfer to IHG at 1:1. I would most likely rather save my UR points for other redemptions, but if I needed to top off my IHG account for an award, it’s nice to have the option.
And it’s definitely worth noting that there’s a limited time offer on the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card.
Conclusion on Regretting Canceling My IHG Rewards Credit Card
I’m still bummed that I let this card get away from me, but I’m eligible to apply for the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card again since it’s been over 24 months since I last received a bonus for my previous card. So, the IHG is definitely on my radar. And it also appears that the IHG card doesn’t fall under Chase’s 5/24 rule.
Remember to think before canceling a credit card. What are the perks that you will be losing? And do the benefits justify the annual fee? Also, don’t forget about the options of downgrading your card or receiving a retention bonus to keep it.
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