The IHG Hotels Free Night Offer Is Even Better Than We Thought!

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A few weeks ago we flagged a very generous looking promotion from IHG, offering a free night certificate after 2 stays at selected hotels. After spending a little bit of time working out how best to take advantage of the offer myself, I realised that it’s actually even more lucrative than we first thought.

Let’s just recap the offer details quickly so you know what I’m talking about:

“It’s on us. Travel in the UK and experience the best Britain has to offer. When you spend two nights at any of our stunning new properties listed, you’ll get a free* night (*room rate only) at one of over 5,000 IHG hotels worldwide.

So, whether you decide to spend a couple of nights here or two nights there, you’ll still get a free night anywhere.

The eligible properties are:

  • Kimpton Fitzroy London

  • The Met Hotel, Leeds

  • Principal York

  • Principal Manchester

  • voco™ St David’s, Cardiff

  • Principal Edinburgh Charlotte Square

  • Principal Edinburgh George Street

  • Blythswood Square Hotel, Glasgow

  • Wotton House, near Dorking, Surrey

What do I need to do to get a free night certificate?

  • Register for the offer here.

  • Book 2 nights at the selected UK properties between 17 December 2018 – 31 March 2019 (note that these DO NOT need to be consecutive nights. Booking 2 separate stays is absolutely fine).

  • Redeem your free night before 31 October 2019. Free night can be redeemed at over 5,000 hotels

At the time I noted that The Met Hotel in Leeds had some very good rates available – particularly single rooms on Fridays and Mondays, starting at ~£40. Even if you had no need to actually stay in Leeds, you could therefore potentially ‘mattress run” to earn a free night certificate for ~£80, which you could then use at any IHG hotel in the world – potentially saving you £100s.

How is the offer better now?

1) IHG has since released details of its new general promotion (due to go live on 15th January), which should stack nicely with the free night certificate offer. Everyone is targeted with different offers, but I imagine most people should at least be able to get double points (and perhaps something much better) from their stays.

2) I discovered that my favourite regular hotel discount – the IHG Mastercard Partner Rate (full details) – applies to stays at The Met Hotel, despite it being new to the IHG booking system. The partner rate is open to everyone and knocks up to 30% off the price of IHG hotels in Europe when you book 21+ days in advance.

At one point you could book Sunday nights at The Met for as little as £28, though starting rates appear to have crept up to £34.65 now:

That still means you can have a couple of staycations in Leeds and earn a free night certificate to use at any IHG hotel in the world (including expensive Intercontinentals in London, New York, Paris, Hong Kong, etc)  for under £70!

Bottom line

This is truly great offer if you fancy a trip to Leeds, or can mattress run without too much inconvenience. Anybody stayed and bumped into a fellow ‘travel hacker’ yet???


  1. Michael Jennings says

    I did this last weekend. Of course, I booked it (non-refundably) before I knew my targets for the general promotion and then did it before the general promotion started. Also, I didn’t use the IHG Mastercard rate, so clearly a non-optimal effort from me there. On the other hand, I got a perfectly nice weekend in Leeds for a totally reasonable price, and I now have a free night in an Intercontinental somewhere expensive, so I really can’t complain.

      • Michael Jennings says

        The hotel was fine. The hotel had been refurbished relatively recently, the room was a good size, everything was clean, the bed was comfortable, the bathroom was large and everything worked nicely. I don’t know whether the facilities other than the room were any good, as I did not use them, but the general state of repair and decoration of the hotel would suggest they were quite nice. (I didn’t even enter any of the restaurants or bars). The location is quite decent – very close to the railway station, but what you would probably otherwise describe as the edge of the centre of town.

        On the other hand, I didn’t get any status recognition at all – not even a “Thank you for being IHG Platinum” – when I checked in, although I did get an e-mail a day or so later stating that I had received 500 points as a welcome amenity. I would normally expect to be offered a choice of this or the points when I checked in. Also, when I checked in, I was told the times for breakfast without any mention as to what I had to do to get it. (I expect one of “You have a breakfast inclusive rate / Breakfast is complimentary – it’s served , between “. or “Your rate does not include presently include breakfast, would you like it for ?”. As my rate did not include it and I had been quoted an extra £20 for breakfast when I had booked, I simply went down the road and had a full English for a lot less than that in a chain pub, but the lack or clarity was a bit disappointing.

        Okay hotel, but the staff clearly haven’t figured out what they are supposed to do as an IHG hotel, I think. This is presumably part of why it hasn’t been rebranded yet.

        • Joe Deeney says

          Cheers Michael! – Good to hear the hotel itself is decent, even if the staff haven’t been trained re IHG yet (more or less what I expected). I’ve walked past the building hundreds of times over the years, but can’t remember ever popping in to the bar/restaurant, so am quite looking forward to it.

  2. john browell says

    My first mattress run is 13th so I’m keen to see how my experience is compared to Michael’s.
    Joe, it sounds like you might be a Leeds based member like me.
    Craig there are loads of reasons to visit Leeds; some great places for quality food and exciting nightlife, though I’m getting a bit old for the nightlife side of it now. And hopefully soon we’ll have a Premiership football team again, despite the likelihood that we lose this weekend’s game to Derby.

    • Joe Deeney says

      Yep – just 15 mins on the train away. Leeds has always had great nightlife and music, lovely pubs, plenty of sports to watch, pretty good more ‘highbrow’ culture too (WY Playhouse, Opera North, The Grand, Royal Armouries, etc), interesting (though rarely beautiful) architecture. Cools bars and good food (from streetfood to Michelin starred) are pretty much everywhere now too. A massive student population helps keep everything busy. Good shopping too I suppose, if that’s your thing. Roundhay Park is nice, heading down to the river in summer can be glorious – and of course you’re only ever minutes away from ‘proper’ countryside and lots of towns and villages worth visiting in their own right. The city is quite compact too, so you can walk everywhere quite easily.

      I would say the one area where Leeds does fall down a bit though is the relative lack of good well-located hotels, and in particular a genuine 5 star.

  3. Beathead says

    Can this offer really be stacked with the general promotion? In the terms off all my offers there is a restriction to the brands like IC, Holiday Inn etc. But Met and Principal are unbranded!

    • Joe Deeney says

      I take the point about the specific terms, but I believe so. The rates are Points earning, and it would be bad form to exclude certain hotels without making that clear (or at the very least explicit in the terms). The main reason though, is just that I doubt IHG’s IT is sufficiently advanced enough to differentiate effectively. My own offer is still all over the place (“complete 4 out of 5 for x bonus points” – but there are only 4 tasks…) but we’ll know for certain shortly after the promo actually launches on the 15th.

  4. A K says

    I’m guessing that youd need to check in to get the free night and just booking it wouldnt be enough? Not worth the hassle of actually going to leeds 🙂

    • john browell says

      AK raises an interesting issue here. Give that we are all friendly on here, there is the opportunity for someone like myself (as I live in Leeds in this specific case) to maybe check-in on behalf of another member if it helps them hit a target. Obviously if there would be no ID needed , or it’s a story of “my friend booked this for me using their details, here’s the confirmation info……”
      Something to consider.

  5. Rob Rixon says

    Just done some research on this as I used to live in Leeds but we moved to Bingley last July. But as I’m working in Shrewsbury at the moment and still pass through Leeds early doors on a Monday morning, it seems a small sacrifice to not take advantage of this. I have just checked a couple of Sunday nights and booked them for £31.50 and £37.80 before the end of March. My wife is now deciding which hotel she wants to use the free night at before the end of October!

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