We checked out of our Hilton Garden Inn this morning to spend our final few days in a different area of the city, the Dubai Marina. The marina is pretty far out there from the Hilton, so we chose to stay at the InterContinental Dubai Marina primarily because of its location and because we had some free nights to use at any IHG property. Ah, the perks of membership!
Lisa and I both have the IHG Mastercard, which carries at $49 annual fee. For this very low cost, we receive automatic Platinum Elite membership status, which allows us perks like upgrades when available, a welcome amenity (usually a bottle of water or some extra hotel points) and late check-out. Perhaps the biggest benefit is the fact that every year we have the credit card, we receive a certificate that covers one free night at any IHG property in the world. That means any Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Candlewood Suites, Crowne Plaza, Staybridge Suites and the top end InterContinental.
Upon check-in we were recognized as Platinum Elite members and provided with an automatic upgrade from their regular room to a suite. We are pretty simple travelers and we would have been happy for our regular room, but of course we’ll accept a free upgrade to a better room. We can’t recall the last time we had a fancy room, so we didn’t know what to expect when we entered our home for our last few days here in Dubai…
The rooms here typically go for between $250-$300, so we’ve definitely maximized our return on value, plus this location adjacent to the marina is beautiful. Bottom line is that the IHG Mastercard should be at the top of the list for anyone wanting a cheap and rewarding travel credit card.