IHG expired my loyalty points after being member since 1983 with no notification

  • Hi Guest, welcome to the help forum. You can get fast answers to your customer service questions here. We have a dedicated team of advocates who are ready to help. Just go to the section that matches your question and ask us!
  • If you've posted a question or issue for our advocates to assist with, please be sure to check back frequently for responses and requests for clarification.
  • Did you know you can get email notifications when something new posts to your favorite forum? It's easy. Just click the "watch" link right next to the "post new thread" button at the top of your favorite forum. The rest is easy. Now you'll never miss another conversation.
  • Want to become an expert user? Drop by the How to use this forum section and all will be revealed. We'll show you how to make the most of your experience.
Dec 23, 2019
2
0
1
68
I retired in late 2018 after some 40 years of frequent business/family travel. During my most recent position I even helped select IHG as the preferred hotel for our 15,000 employees. Ironically my parent corporation actually owns/manages about 100 IHG hotel properties.I have stayed at several IHG properties since retirement, but family members used third party to book so I was told those transactions do not count. Each time i checked in at hotel i verified my loyalty number and did not give it a second thought. I spoke with customer service and they said my points expired Nov 18, 2019 due to lack of activity. (my balance was about 150,000 pts) When I inquired about why no notice like I get with all other loyalty clubs they said that since I had opted out of email notification (apparently in 2013) they could not notify me. I asked nicely about reinstatement and was firmly told no by the representative and her supervisor. I am very dissatisfied since I had planned to finally use some of those points in retirement to visit my children. Help!
 
Dec 19, 2014
626
1,723
93
48
Historically, IHG points did not expire, but the policy was changed in May 2016.
Effective May 2016, points expire if there is no activity within the preceding 12 months. Since your points expired on 11/18/2019, your last qualifying activity would have been 11/18/2018.

Personally, I think IHG's position with regards to position is harsh. I would write IHG's executive contacts, but as Neil pointed out, historically IHG has not been sympathetic.

You *MAY* have some leverage if your employer has some contacts and is willing to advocate on your behalf.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jsn55 and Pixie Pie

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
9,703
10,495
113
San Francisco
I retired in late 2018 after some 40 years of frequent business/family travel. During my most recent position I even helped select IHG as the preferred hotel for our 15,000 employees. Ironically my parent corporation actually owns/manages about 100 IHG hotel properties.I have stayed at several IHG properties since retirement, but family members used third party to book so I was told those transactions do not count. Each time i checked in at hotel i verified my loyalty number and did not give it a second thought. I spoke with customer service and they said my points expired Nov 18, 2019 due to lack of activity. (my balance was about 150,000 pts) When I inquired about why no notice like I get with all other loyalty clubs they said that since I had opted out of email notification (apparently in 2013) they could not notify me. I asked nicely about reinstatement and was firmly told no by the representative and her supervisor. I am very dissatisfied since I had planned to finally use some of those points in retirement to visit my children. Help!
What a shame. We see this so often ... people count on their loyalty programs but don't keep up with their accounts. IHG is not very easy to get along with ... I split my stays between IHG and Hilton, I have top status with both. I can always count on Hilton to take care of me. With IHG, it's much more difficult to ask for something like this, they're just not very interested. I originally hung in there with IHG for the availability of points/cash bookings, but Hilton now offers that as well. I'm thinking about moving over to Marriott but am concerned about the SPG disaster which still seems to be roiling members. By all means, ask IHG if they will restore your points, but don't expect much ... I wish I could be more positive about your chances. I think IHG is missing opportunities to grow their loyalty plans by being so rigid with their members. Perhaps things will change if they realize that they're losing business to the other chains.
 
  • Like
Reactions: VoR61
Aug 9, 2017
86
77
18
77
At least one other person mention that they feel the IHG policy is harsh. I’m in a similar position since retirement and use the “dining” option to acquire points and thus keep the account active. All you have to do is register a credit card and when you use the card you acquire IHG points.
 

GAT

Apr 23, 2018
200
220
43
80
IHG did the same thing to me a few years ago, and I didn't find out until I tried to book a Paris hotel; and it was only 11 or so days after the points had expired. Polite requests got me nowhere, although I wasn't familiar with Elliott Advocacy at that time. They offered the same excuse - I had opted out of email notifications. They had no answer when I asked how it was that since they continued to send publicity and advertising promotions via snail mail, they couldn't send important notifications about my account that way. I never got my points back, but if I had, I would have immediately transferred them to some other program.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jsn55 and VoR61

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
22,919
22,883
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
If your email address has not changed since you signed up, and you checked your junk mail for an email advising that your points were expiring, you can go to arbitration if using our company contacts doesn’t work.

Points expire after no activity in a year.
Point Expiration. CLUB LEVEL MEMBERSHIP POINTS (SEE MEMBER BENEFITS, INCLUDING LEVELS OF MEMBERSHIP, HERE) WILL EXPIRE IF YOUR MEMBERSHIP ACCOUNT BECOMES INACTIVE FOR ANY PERIOD OF TWELVE (12) MONTHS OR LONGER, WHICH MEANS YOUR POINTS WILL BE REMOVED FROM YOUR ACCOUNT AND WILL NO LONGER BE AVAILABLE FOR REDEMPTION. To maintain the Points in your membership account, you must have at least one “earn” or “redeem” transaction posted to your account every twelve (12) months

There is information about arbitration in the terms and conditions.
https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/customer-care/member-tc
 
  • Like
Reactions: VoR61

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
9,703
10,495
113
San Francisco
If your email address has not changed since you signed up, and you checked your junk mail for an email advising that your points were expiring, you can go to arbitration if using our company contacts doesn’t work.

Points expire after no activity in a year.
Point Expiration. CLUB LEVEL MEMBERSHIP POINTS (SEE MEMBER BENEFITS, INCLUDING LEVELS OF MEMBERSHIP, HERE) WILL EXPIRE IF YOUR MEMBERSHIP ACCOUNT BECOMES INACTIVE FOR ANY PERIOD OF TWELVE (12) MONTHS OR LONGER, WHICH MEANS YOUR POINTS WILL BE REMOVED FROM YOUR ACCOUNT AND WILL NO LONGER BE AVAILABLE FOR REDEMPTION. To maintain the Points in your membership account, you must have at least one “earn” or “redeem” transaction posted to your account every twelve (12) months

There is information about arbitration in the terms and conditions.
https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/customer-care/member-tc
I don't understand this reference to arbitration. Michael's points expired for inactivity. He's looking for an exception to IHG's rules. Even with Platinum status, IHG doesn't seem to care. I'm being hung out to dry by a Holiday Inn Express right now and IHG will not help me. I don't know about the other big chains, but I am confident that Hilton would have jumped in to protect me the minute I asked them.

Michael, I'd see if you can come up with a contact person from your old job who might be able to nudge this along in your favor.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • Like
Reactions: BittyBoo

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
22,919
22,883
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
The terms state of they feel that they were unfairly closed, they can ask for arbitration. If the OP claims he or she did not receive and notice of the expiration of the points and it did not go to spam- he or she can request arbitration. Doesn’t mean they will win.

There was no activity but that doesn’t mean they can’t try arbitration to make a case that IHG didn’t notify him.

These point systems are for frequent users - and we know that these companies are very strict about the programs. But if the OP thinks he has a case, he is free to try arbitration.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jsn55 and BittyBoo

smd

Mar 14, 2018
577
934
93
The terms state of they feel that they were unfairly closed, they can ask for arbitration. If the OP claims he or she did not receive and notice of the expiration of the points and it did not go to spam- he or she can request arbitration. Doesn’t mean they will win.
The AAA charges $925 just to file an arbitration claim and will charge another $800 + mediation fees if the case proceeds to a hearing. If the OP wins, he may be awarded his costs, but it seems like a big risk given that terms don't require IHG to provide any notice.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jsn55 and BittyBoo
Aug 13, 2016
36
38
18
69
I had the same situation with IHG last year. They removed my points with no notification. I emailed the IHG executive office and they initially blew me off. They claim that they notified me but I told them I never received any notifications and am pretty confident of that. I pressed the point that without being notified it was inappropriate to simply remove the points from my account. They relented and restored the points. I used them for a free night and haven't stayed with IHG since. It left me with a bad feeling.
 
Nov 10, 2018
11
5
3
82
Interesting case - to Chris in NC - is it true that all points expire after 12 months or is that just for Club members. I am Platinum Elite and understood (maybe incorrectly) that points don't expire.
Thank you
Pat