IHG Ambassador program - being offered 10,000 IHG points instead of a room upgrade - should I take it?

Hi all,

After reading up on this site and other sites of the benefits of IHG Ambassador program, I took the plunge and joined up. I booked a 1 bedroom Deluxe Residence at Intercontinental Osaka and was hoping I would be upgraded to a 2 bedroom Superior Residence as according to another forum that was the “upgrade path”. I understand that upgrade path is not official from IHG but the terms of the program also states the guaranteed room upgrade is “A room one category higher than purchased will be assigned upon check-in”. Is the 2 bedroom not “a room one category higher”?

When I emailed the hotel about another issue, they came back and told me “oh, by the way, regarding the room upgrade, there’s no room category higher” than the one I booked so they offer all Ambassadors who book the 1 bedroom deluxe residence with 10k IHG points. I’m travelling with a friend and a 2 bedroom is “preferable” but not “critical” however, one of us might be sleeping in the couch in the lounge room. If I knew there was no upgrade, I would’ve booked a twin bed which is roughly $120 cheaper so in a sense, I’m buying the points – at a lower rate than the recent 100% bonus. Maybe my expectations for the upgrade were too much? haha

My question is, should I take the 10k points or try my luck and go back and ask for an upgrade? Do they allow a bit of negotiation, say if I ask for 20k points instead? :slight_smile:

Thank you!


Being a rather new IHG Ambassador myself, I am under the impression that one of the benefits (that I value) is “guaranteed” upgrades of at least “1 level up”.

I had a quick look for a random date, I believe what you have booked is a 1 bedroom superior suite? (I personally dislike the inconsistent naming on hotel websites and websites like hotels.com) There seems to be a 2 bedroom suite available on the date.

My personal advice is:

Check the room availabilities for the night(s) you are booked in. If you find a 2 bedroom availability, consider booking the fully refundable room to prove that there is such a thing available. Contact IHG Ambassador Customer Service and voice your concerns. Saying you booked the 1 bedroom suite and enrolled in Ambassador program to get upgraded. Was told no upgrades but still was able to book.

Other things to be mindful of is whether you have booked directly from IHG website, which I think you did because you mentioned booking with IHG pts. Some websites suggest checking with hotel about what the next room up is before booking.

If they are really fully booked, points, vouchers, apologies, etc. is probably all they can throw at you.

Good luck and keep us updated on how you go.



I’ve stayed with IHG a few times and familiar with the Ambassador program so hopefully the info below will help:

  • you will need to find out what the next room category. As mentioned all hotels are different and the next room category upgrade doesn’t always mean a bigger room, it could also be a better view (ie city view to ocean view etc)

  • you could ask for your room type to be changed to the lower room category with 2 beds, at the lower room rate and then take the points as the upgrade (if you don’t mind not having a suite). At least you get 2 beds, save some money and extra points

  • you could ask for more points, normally to have a free night using points is 50,000 for an InterContinental so it’s not unreasonable to ask for another 5,000. Buying 10000 points online normally is pricier than the price difference between room types so this option may be dependent on Osaka’s pricing structure and flexibility

I hope the above has helped you!! Good luck and enjoy your time in Japan :slight_smile:

Thanks both for your responses. I went back to them and told them I was happy with the room I booked but 10,000 points was simply not acceptable as compensation for not being upgraded.

Given that for the night I’m staying, the 1 bedroom deluxe residence was 37,000yen and the 2 bedroom superior was 87,000yen, I expected more than just 10,000 points in return. In the end, they came back and apologised and told me they would honour the upgrade. This is my first Ambassador experience and I assume normally you get upgraded at check-in (which for me is still a few months away!) but I can already see the room upgraded in my app so I guess that’s the end of that…hopefully!

Again, thanks both for your advice. Now looking forward to the stay :slight_smile: