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IHG One Rewards

IHG's free breakfast benefit for diamond members explained.

Updated: Mar 9, 2024. Walter Ray.
IHG's free breakfast benefit for diamond members explained.  - Cover Image
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When it comes to loyalty programs, devaluation is the only constant. Additionally, proactive perks or exclusive privileges for elite members have become increasingly scarce. In fact, we don’t even expect them anymore.

However, there are a handful of ‘guaranteed benefits’ that still make loyalty programs worth your while.

One such popular benefit is the complimentary breakfast offered to Diamond members at IHG hotels.

How does it work?

All IHG One Rewards members with a diamond status are eligible for free breakfast benefit. It doesn’t matter whether you earned your IHG Diamond membership the hard way, got status matched, or smartly with bonus points packages.

IHG Diamond Welcome Amenity Options

The complimentary breakfast perk for Diamond members is presented as a ‘Welcome Amenity at Check-In’. It is not automatically applied, thus you’ll need to request for it at the time of check-in.

You have 3 choices to pick from:

  • Free Breakfast.
  • Bonus Points.
  • A drink or a snack voucher.

You have the option to choose any one of the benefits mentioned above. However, note that the breakfast benefit is valid daily, while bonus points and a voucher for a drink or snack are available only once per stay.

Do bear in mind that all elite benefits, including free breakfast, are available only when you make your booking directly with IHG. Reservations made through third-party platforms like Expedia or Agoda are not eligible for these loyalty benefits.

Moreover, the Free Breakfast option is limited to full-service and select-service brands of IHG only.

  • InterContinental
  • Vignette
  • Hualuxe
  • Hotel Indigo
  • voco
  • Crowne Plaza
  • Even
  • Holiday Inn
  • Kimpton

Note that some brands like Holiday Inn Express offer free breakfast for all guests anyway.

In case you are wondering, the free breakfast benefit is applicable on reward nights (points booking) as well.

What’s included?

You will be offered any one of the following as per the hotel’s policy.

  • A full breakfast buffet with unlimited non-alcoholic drinks.
  • A selection of breakfast dishes (excludes specialty/local items) with unlimited non-alcoholic drinks.

Please note:

  • Alcoholic beverages and certain specialty drinks are not included.
  • This benefit is not available for in-room dining or at specialty restaurants.
  • This amenity is not offered at InterContinental Residence Suites Dubai Festival City, InterContinental Doha Residences, The Venetian Resort Las Vegas, or The Palazzo at the Venetian Resort.

Available for member’s room only.

Only the diamond member and one registered guest in the same room can avail of the free breakfast benefit for each night of their stay. The free breakfast does not extend to guests in any other rooms, even if booked under the same reservation.

Do not check in on the app.

Using the IHG app for digital check-in automatically selects points as your welcome amenity, and it may not be possible to alter this later at the hotel.

Therefore, I would recommend checking in personally upon arrival at the front desk and specifically requesting complimentary breakfast as your welcome amenity.

When not to take the free breakfast?

There are some situations where declining the complimentary breakfast offer might be the better choice. Here are a few potential scenarios:

  • You only have a one-night stay and must check out early in the morning, before breakfast is served.
  • You’re not an early riser and prefer to sleep in rather than get up for breakfast. Perhaps you’d rather stay out late and enjoy the party instead.
  • You’re traveling with family or a larger group that requires a rate that already includes breakfast.
  • There are current IHG promotions offering free breakfast.

In these instances, it may be more advantageous to select other welcome amenities on offer.

My Experience.

I have always been offered a complimentary breakfast as a welcome amenity at every IHG hotel I’ve stayed in. All of these hotels have been more than happy to offer this benefit.

The only exception was the Hotel Indigo Patong, Phuket, where they attempted (unsuccessfully) to credit bonus points to my account instead of offering me the option to choose breakfast.

At Kimpton and InterContinental properties, the front desk agents often suggest selecting breakfast as the welcome amenity. In general, IHG is quite sorted in this regard. They experience far fewer issues in enforcing membership benefits across all their hotels compared to other chains.


IHG One Rewards members with Diamond Elite status can select a daily free breakfast as a welcome amenity at most IHG brands. This privilege extends to another guest staying in the same room, offering them complimentary breakfast throughout their stay as well.

This benefit can result in significant savings, particularly at high-end properties.

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