Travel Credit Cards

IHG Traveler Card Review (2021) – 80K Bonus Offer + Gold Elite Status Boost

Last updated: December 14,2021
Originally Published: December 13,2021
by Jestan Mendame

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The IHG Traveler Card is an entry-level card in the Chase/IHG co-branded lineup which comes with a solid rewards rate and a big welcome bonus.

With zero annual and foreign transaction fees, the IHG Rewards Club Traveler Credit Card is perfect for casual travelers who want earn points and redeem IHG-related benefits on the IHG Rewards loyalty program.

Who’s eligible for the card?

Anyone who doesn’t have an existing IHG Traveler card is eligible but just be mindful of the Chase 5/24 rule since the card is under the Chase lineup. It’s an unspoken rule within the points and credit card community wherein Chase would reject credit card applications from applicants who have had 5 credit card accounts in the past 24 months.

You also need to take note that the IHG Traveler card credit score requirement ranges from good to excellent so even though it’s an entry level card, you can’t easily get approved for it if you have poor credit.

Before you sign up for the card, let’s find out more about its benefits and possible drawbacks.


Read More: Free Night Certificate And IHG Elite Status Extension Now Offered To Members


Explore the stunning beaches of Maldives when you stay at the InterContinental Maldives Maamunagau Resort.
Image courtesy of Envato.com

Key Information:

Being a no-annual-fee card, the IHG travel card is packed with decent travel perks! Here’s what cardholders should expect:

  • Get an IHG traveler card bonus offer of 80,000 points after spending $2,000 within 3 months of card membership
  • Earn up to 15X points per $1 at IHG® Hotels & Resorts
  • Earn 2X points per $1 at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants
  • Get your Fourth Reward Night for free when staying at any IHG hotel or affiliate for four or more nights
  • 20% bonus for points purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Gold Elite Status when you spend $10,000 on purchases with your Card each calendar year

IHG Traveler Card Bonus Offer

New cardholders can earn an IHG traveler card bonus offer of 80,000 IHG points after spending $2,000 within three months of account opening.

You can then use these points to redeem award nights at more than 5,000 hotels worldwide. Here are other brands that the IHG group operates:

  • Staybridge Suites
  • Hotel Indigo
  • Holiday Inn
  • Holiday Inn Resort
  • Candlewood Suites
  • Even Hotels
  • Holiday Inn Club Vacations
  • Holiday Inn Express
  • InterContinental Hotels & Resorts
  • HUALUXE
  • Crowne Plaza
  • Kimpton Hotels

Apart from award nights, you can also redeem your points towards products on the IHG rewards portal, gift cards, and airline partners. Here is IHG’s current list of airline partners:

You can transfer your IHG points to any of these airline partners at different transfer ratios.
(Image courtesy of IHG.com)

However, transferring your IHG points to airline partners may not be the best idea – some transfer ratios cost 5 IHG points in exchange to 1 point of an airline partner. IHG points get the best value at 6 cents apiece when redeemed towards hotel nights.

Earning Points

Apart from the IHG traveler card bonus offer, cardholders can also earn points when they spend on certain categories using their card.

  • Earn a total of 15x points per dollar towards IHG purchases
    • 5X points per dollar at IHG hotels and resorts using your IHG Traveler Card
    • 10X bonus points per dollar for being an IHG Rewards Club Member
  • 2x points per dollar at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants
  • 1x points on all other purchases

Fourth Reward Night

You’ll get your fourth night for free whenever you redeem an award stay of four nights or more. For example, if you redeem your points for an eight-night stay at an IHG hotel, you’ll pay zero points for your fourth and eight night. The discount will apply automatically after redemption.

Save 20% On Point Purchases

Apart from earning points through credit card purchases, you can also get more points by purchasing them with cash. The IHG Traveler Card currently offers a 20% discount whenever you buy IHG points.

No Foreign Transaction Fees

Most credit cards have a foreign transaction of fee of up to 3% per transaction. The IHG Travel Card doesn’t have foreign transaction fees so it’s the perfect companion whenever you go on a shopping spree abroad.

Fast Track Your Way To Gold Elite Status

Spend at least $10,000 in purchases within a calendar year and you can become eligible for Gold Elite status for the following year.

Having Gold Elite status can give you exclusive IHG perks such as:

  • 10% bonus points when you use your card on IHG stays. This means that you’ll earn a total of 16x points per dollar).
  • Late checkout (subject to availability)
  • Priority check-in
  • Welcome amenity on each stay (could be welcome points or a snack)

Who Can Benefit From The Card?

The IHG Traveler card can be for any frequent flyer or traveler but it’s best for people who are:

  • Frequently staying at IHG hotels
  • Booking at least 4 award nights every year
  • Earning IHG points but don’t want to pay for annual fees

However, if you want to get elite status right away, you might want the IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card. It does come with an $89 annual fee but it can give you solid perks such as the annual free night away.

IHG Travelers VS Premier Card

The IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card is far more superior than the IHG Traveler Card. Here are some of its benefits:

  • 125,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 within the first three months of account opening
  • Free anniversary award night at eligible IHG hotels worldwide (valued around $250)
  • Free award night on your fourth night when you redeem your points for at least 4 award nights
  • Earn up to 25 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants.
  • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get instant Platinum Elite status
  • Global Entry or TSA Pre✔® application fee statement credit o

When comparing the cards, IHG Traveler VS Premier, the IHG Premier Card is a better option but if you’re just looking for a card that can earn IHG points, the IHG Traveler card would suffice.

IHG Traveler Card Pros & Cons

  • Zero annual fees
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Low spending threshold for the welcome bonus
  • Not much in the way of perks beyond earning points
  • Really only a good option for earning points on IHG stays

Read More: Is Hotel Or Airline Status Worth It?


Bottomline

Overall, the IHG Traveler Card is a great option for frequent visitors at IHG hotels but even if you’re not an IHG loyalist, you can still get the card because it doesn’t have an annual fee.

The card won’t do much in terms of travel benefits but it’s a great entry level card for those who want to earn IHG points and redeem award nights at IHG hotels.

Welcome Offer: 100,000 Membership Reward Points after spending $6,000 in the first 6 months of your membership when you sign up for the New American Express Platinum

Special Bonus: Earn 10x on restaurant spend worldwide in the first 6 months of your membership, up to 225,000 additional points, this is in additional to the record high welcome bonus.

Every traveler should have this card in their wallet, and the welcome offer of 100k is the highest offer Points Panda has seen in many years!

Annual Fee: $695

Learn More

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