Everything That We Know About Its Perks, Benefits, Features. Is It Worth It In South Korea? We Found Out. Updated for 2019.
There are two types of program, Ambassador and Royal Ambassador. Some people have asked us what the difference is between the InterContinental Ambassador and Royal Ambassador. First of all, the program is an IHG loyalty program that recognizes your commitment to staying at IHG hotels and properties across the globe. It is the next higher status past the most top IHG's Rewards Club Tier, the Aspire Status. Not to be confused with the Hilton Honors Aspire membership.
The benefits within the IHG Member Rewards Aspire Status is enormous, so both the Ambassador and Royal Ambassador has to take it to the next level for it to be worth it.
If you purchase the InterContinental Ambassador Status, you will be automatically enrolled into the IHG Rewards Club Program. Ambassador Status gives you both IHG Rewards Club and Ambassador Perks.
If you are an IHG Rewards Club with Gold Elite Status, members will be given Gold Ambassador Status. Platinum Rewards Club members will receive Platinum Ambassador Status. Just add Ambassador to each of the Rewards Club Status levels.
1. Gold Ambassador members receive IHG Rewards Gold Elite benefits.
2. Platinum Ambassador members receive IHG Rewards Platinum Elite benefits.
3. Spire Ambassador and Royal Ambassador members receive Spire Elite benefits.
The Ambassador Status benefits are not available for airline crew members during their crew stays, complimentary rooms, IHG Employee rates, Travel Agent rates, Airline rates, Hotel rates. The Ambassador Status benefits are also available for IHG Reward Nights and paid nights.
Which Hotels Participate In The Program?
You receive the benefits at the following IHG brand hotels: Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo, Holiday Inn Express, Holiday Inn Resort, Holiday Inn Club Vacations, EVEN Hotels, HUALUXE, Staybridge Suites, and Candlewood Suites.
Staying at the COEX Hotel (IHG) was one of the best experiences I've enjoyed. They recognize Platinum Ambassador Status there. COEX Hotel is in Seoul, South Korea.
I've stayed at Seoul Euljiro Holiday Inn Express (IHG) and Suwon Holiday Inn Express (IHG) which recognized the Platinum Ambassador Status as well. Both hotels are in South Korea.
How do I get the InterContinental Ambassador Status or Royal Ambassador Status?
IHG Rewards Club members must purchase an InterContinental Ambassador Status for $200. Renewals are only $150 a year or 40,000 IHG points. Other renewal options have been $200 annual fee with 15,000 bonus points and 10% points rebates for the year. You will have to do the math and see if it will be worth it for you. It is worth it if you plan on staying at IHG hotels throughout the year.
The Royal Ambassador Status is earned by invitation only and depends upon your stays at the IHG brand hotels worldwide. You can't purchase this tier status.
You can join the InterContinental Ambassador program online at ihg.com/intercontinental/hotels/us/en/ambassador/join?secondaryPage=join.html.
or join at any InterContinental Hotels & Resorts across the globe.
Once approved, you will get an InterContinental Ambassador member kit delivered to your door within six to eight weeks.
You cannot sell, transfer, barter the Ambassador or Royal Ambassador Status to someone else. It is linked to your name, and you only.
Perks of the IHG Ambassador Status as of 2019
1. All perks of the IHG Rewards Club Status level you have. If you have Platinum Elite Status, you will get Platinum Elite Status and Ambassador Status. Your status will be Platinum Ambassador.
2. Guaranteed room upgrade to a superior room of one category higher than purchased. This is for each time you stay.
3. Welcome fruit platter, choice of snack or fruit and mineral water waiting for you in the room for every stay. This is a hit or miss. What you get depends on the hotel. I have received a fruit dish and chocolate at the COEX Hotel in Seoul, South Korea. In Greater China, only Platinum Elite and Platinum Spire Elite members get the fruit platter for hotel stays, not nights.
4. You get complimentary water bottles, usually two, each day.
5. 4pm late checkout upon request.
6. One complimentary Pay per view movie per stay, not per night.
7. A welcome gift waiting in your room, depending upon the hotel. You may not receive this.
8. A welcome letter may be in the room. I received a welcome letter at the COEX Hotel in Seoul, South Korea.
9. Single Rates on double room occupancy.
10. Instant checkout.
11. A Complimentary weekend night certificate each year you renew Ambassador status. The free weekend night is valid on the second night of a paid weekend stay on the Ambassador Weekend rate. The certificate expires on the date written on the certificate. You must give the hotel your ID and Ambassador member number upon check in. To avoid a cancellation fee, reservations must be cancelled at least 48 hours before your reservations check in.
12. Dedicated Check in area.
13. Complimentary internet.
All of these benefits start immediately once approved for an InterContinental Ambassador Status. The Ambassador benefits are given at InterContinental Hotels & Resorts. Your IHG Rewards Club benefits are for all the IHG brand hotels.
These Ambassador benefits are guaranteed according to IHG.
New Ambassador Benefits Added in 2019 And Beyond
These benefits are additional to the regular Ambassador benefits that you read above.
- Automatic Platinum Elite Status in the IHG Rewards Club Membership
- Up to $20 Restaurant & Bar Credit per stay. If you are paying in a foreign currency, the $20 credit is subject to the current currency exchange rate. The credit is available at select hotel restaurants, bars, and mini bars.
- The complimentary weekend night certificate will be sent by e-delivery, meaning electronically. You can check for the certificate by logging into your IHG Ambassador member account.
Additional Ambassador Benefits For IHG Hotel Stays In Greater China
1. A complimentary breakfast in the morning for every night you stay at a IHG participating hotel. This for every night. If you stay for 5 nights, you get 5 complimentary breakfast.
2. A discount of 15% at the hotel's restaurants and bars.
What Perks Are Not Available For Ambassadors?
- The Club InterContinental Experience including Club Lounge access is not included in the Ambassador Status.
- Guaranteed two category room upgrade
- Complimentary unlimited beverages from the mini-bar
- Early Check-in of 8:00 AM
- Complimentary use of the hotel's health facilities like sauna and massages.
Perks of Royal Ambassador Status?
1. Everything in the IHG Rewards Club Status level you currently hold. Platinum Elite members still get Platinum Elite perks along with Royal Ambassador perks.
2. All of Ambassador Status perks.
3. Guaranteed two category room upgrades. This excludes Presidential and Specialty Rooms. Suite room upgrades are only one category while non-suite rooms are two category upgrades for Royal Ambassador members. Room upgrade to two category tiers higher than the booking at InterContinental Hotels & Resorts in the Asia Pacific, Middle East, and Africa. The room upgrade is not available in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan.
4. Complimentary Club Lounge access and Club InterContinental Experience access for two people, both must be staying in the same room of the Ambassador member. If there is no Lounge, then a complimentary breakfast at the main restaurant will be given to the Ambassador member and the registered guest staying in the same room.
5. Complimentary mini bar credit of $50 per night for both food and drinks, up to a maximum of $200 per stay. This means you receive credit for four nights. The mini bar must be in the Royal Ambassador's room. Anything over $50, you will be charged for it. In Mainland China (excluding Macau, Hong Kong, and Taiwan) the credit is RMB200, up to RMB 800 per stay. This is roughly $30 per night.
6. Complimentary use of all the hotel's health facilities including massages.
7. Early check-in of 10:00 AM. If early registration is not available for the two category upgrade at 10:00 AM, they will be checked into an open room until it is available.
8. Guaranteed room availability for one room with a 24-hour advance reservation. The reservation must be made before 12:00 noon and 24 hours before your arrival.
9. The Royal Ambassador free night certificate is a bit different from the Ambassador free night certificate. It is worth 70,000 points, meaning that you can stay at a room that charges 70,000 points without cash. You can redeem it from Febuary 5, 2019 to December 31, 2019. It is not valid at IHG®Army Hotels and InterContinental® Alliance Resorts.
How To Use The Complimentary Weekend Night Certificate
You get this for being an Ambassador member. Every renewal year of the Ambassador status, you get a complimentary weekend night certificate.
The weekend certificate is valid for 12 months from the date of issue stamped on the certificate. The expiration date is printed on the certificate received. The certificate is included inside your InterContinental Ambassador member kit. Renewing your Ambassador membership will give you a new weekend certificate to use.
You will need to book a minimum two-night paid weekend stay by booking at intercontinental.com/ambweekend or emailing [email protected].
U.S. and Canada - (Ambassador Service Centre at Tel): 1 888 211 7996
UK - (Ambassador Service Centre at Tel): 0871 942 9099
Rest of the World (Ambassador Service Centre at Tel): +44 870 400 9099
It is accepted at any InterContinental Hotels & Resorts but not any other IHG hotel brands. The complimentary certificate is accepted only booking on the Ambassador Weekend Rate ("AMB Certificate"). A weekend is considered as Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Middle East hotels may consider the weekend to be Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
You must bring the certificate to the hotel, or your booking could be denied.
The certificate must be used by the person with the Ambassador Status. You cannot sell, barter, or give it to someone else.
The weekend night certificate covers only the room and tax on the second weekend night.
The IHG Ambassador / Royal Ambassador Membership is worth it in South Korea.
Selecting Your Preferences On Your Cellphone
What's this all about? The preferences provide advance information to the hotel about your additional needs and wants when staying at the hotel. From extra pillows to foods waiting in your room.
Using the phone app, you can select your preferences in your member account for all stays. To access your preferences on your android phone, log into your IHG Rewards Club app > Click on the three lines > Click on your profile name, it will also have your current membership status and number > Click on manage profile > Click on Stay Preferences
I've been told that InterContinental hates it when Ambassador members use their rewards. Is this true? Do you have any true stories you would like to share? Please contact us via email and we may post it.
Please comment below on what you think about IHG's Ambassador and Royal Ambassador Program and leave us any helpful advice to make it better for you, our readers. Remember to visit the Official "The Seoul of Korea Youtube Channel" and check back to this site.
It is you that keeps us motivated to stay up late through the night burning candles while writing this. This was "What Is The InterContinental Ambassador And Royal Ambassador Program?", by Gyopo Oppa. Sarang Haey Yo! See You Next Time! Fighting!