Does the IHG Mastercard Discount Rate Still Exist? Kind Of…

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I once described the IHG MasterCard discount rate as my favourite regular hotel discount. For a long time, it offered 30% off the the best flexible rate at a vast range of IHG properties throughout Europe. It genuinely saved me £1,000s over the years.

Unfortunately, it disappeared for a while, with the old links becoming unusable. As a result of the pandemic, until now, it didn’t occur to me to mention that the IHG MasterCard partner rate had in fact returned. Although, it’s certainly not as generous as it used to be:

“As a Mastercard® holder you can access 15% off IHG Hotels & Resorts in Europe when you book with your Mastercard. Plus, with our IHG® Clean Promise and commitment to cleanliness – when you’re ready to travel again, we’ll be ready to welcome you.

• Save: 15% off Best Flex Rate in Europe
• Book by: 31 December 2020, with a Mastercard®
• Stay by: 30 June 2021
• Must book at least three days in advance
• Cancellation: minimum 3 days prior to arrival without penalty”

As you can see from the above, there are a couple of things to note. First, the discount is now only 15%. Second, the terms state you had to book by 31st December 2021 – that’s wrong, it still works:

If you pay close attention to the image above though, you can see that while it is still possible to book using the MasterCard rate, you might not want to. For the first random hotel I clicked on, the MasterCard rate was actually a little higher than the cheapest refundable rate.

At other hotels on the same date in the same city, I was able to find small discounts using the Mastercard rate:

So, pay close attention when booking, to ensure you really are getting the best price.

Bottom line

The IHG MasterCard discount rate used to be very useful. These days (irrespective of the fact it officially should have been pulled at the end of last year), it might save you a few quid and is worth checking, but it’s nothing to get very excited about.

With hotels beginning to open up again in the next few months, hopefully we might see a return of the old rate before long.

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