Several hotel chains offer best rate guarantees on their prices. They offer benefits if you book direct and find a lower price on a competing booking site. Those benefits have been devalued over the years, but you can still get a 25% discount or 2K Starpoints with Starwood, 25% off Marriott, 25% off Hilton, 25% off Club Carlson, $50 Hyatt credit or 3,000 Wyndham points. Even Expedia offers a $50 credit if you find a cheaper price elsewhere. Choice hotels used to offer a free night if you found a better rate on another site, now US customers get a $50 credit, though international customers can still get a free night.
IHG has traditionally given a free night if you find a better rate on another site. I used to post free BRG hotel deals fairly often. That is, until a 2013 post where I wrote about using the IHG BRG for a free night at the Intercontinental New York Barclay hotel.
Hold times to speak to IHG spiked to several hours and IHG changed some BRG abuse terms. Eventually they killed the option to file a claim over the phone. The internets were highly displeased with that post and people let me know that loud and clear, from name calling to posting death threats on some forums. I pledged to stop posting BRG deals online, though the techniques to find free BRG hotel stays remained featured in DansDeals Seminars over the years.
At any rate, IHG has just killed the free night BRG offer and will instead offer 5x the normal points for the stay, up to 40K points. For most stays, that’s a big devaluation from a free night offer.
It’s been a fun run, but all good things eventually come to an end.
Have you been able to take advantage of a BRG free night?