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A Beginners Guide to the Qantas Frequent Flyer Program [2020]

Qantas Frequent Flyer Program cards in a mans hand

Last updated: September 2020

As Australia’s largest airline loyalty program with over 13 million members, just over half of Australia’s population are members of Qantas Frequent Flyer program! The program allows members to earn and spend Qantas points on flights, upgrades, and through their programs. It also rewards frequent travellers with status and perks like lounge access.

Being part of the OneWorld airline alliance, and cultivating its own list of powerful global partners – including Emirates – makes the Qantas Frequent Flyer program an enticing program to be part of for frequent travellers.

With a wide range of partners both in the air and on the ground, you don’t need to be a regular Qantas customer – or indeed, even a regular international traveller – to earn and spend Qantas Points. With their new Points Club program, savvy shoppers can still earn on their everyday purchases.

Here’s what you need to know about the Qantas Frequent Flyer program.

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What is Qantas Frequent Flyer?

Qantas Frequent Flyer program is the loyalty program owned by Qantas serving both frequent flyers and frequent buyers. It allows members to earn points on flights, hotels, car hire, credit card spend and more, in countries around the world. It’s also the frequent flyer program for Jetstar Australia.

Qantas is part of the global alliance Oneworld. This alliance allows travellers to earn additional bonus points and redeem Qantas points for flights throughout the network.

They also maintain a network of domestic and international partner airlines, on which members can earn and spend miles, and in some cases, enjoy tier benefits like lounge access. These include the likes of Emirates, Air France, KLM, Air Niugini, China Airlines, El Al, Westjet, China Eastern and Air North.

How to join Qantas Frequent Flyer

The Qantas Frequent Flyer program charges a one-off joining fee. At the time of writing, the fee schedule is:

HOME COUNTRYJOINING FEE
AustraliaAUD$99.50
New ZealandNZD$60.00
Rest of the worldFree

All those joining the Qantas Frequent Flyer program begin at Qantas Bronze, and any status credits accumulated from the time you open your account contribute to lifetime Silver and lifetime Gold status (more on that later).

There is no yearly or on-going fee to maintain your membership.

READ NEXT: How to join the Qantas Frequent Flyer program for free!

Where and how can I earn Qantas Frequent Flyer points?

Even if you don’t regularly fly with Qantas, you can earn Qantas Points around the globe, both in the air and on the ground.

Earn Qantas Frequent Flyer points on flights

In addition to eligible Qantas flights, Qantas Points can also be earned on eligible flights with OneWorld alliance members and their extensive network of partner airlines, including:

  • Alaska Airlines
  • American Airlines
  • British Airways
  • Cathay Pacific
  • Cathay Dragon
  • Fiji Airways*
  • Finnair
  • Iberia
  • Japan Airlines
  • Jetstar
  • Malaysia Airlines
  • Qatar
  • Royal Air Maroc*
  • Royal Jordanian
  • S7 Airlines
  • Sri Lankan Airlines
  • AirFrance
  • Air Vanuatu
  • China Eastern
  • El Al
  • Emirates
  • KLM
  • LATAM
  • WestJet

* Fiji Airways is an OneWorld Connect partner which gives smaller or regional airlines the ability to become part of an airline alliance but with limited benefits. For more information, read this article.

Earn Qantas Frequent Flyer points on hotels

When booking through the Qantas website:

On the ground, earn 3 Qantas Points per $1 spent on your hotel stay when you book your accommodation with Qantas Hotels. A select number of Qantas luxury hotels are available to be booked, earning 5 points per $1 spent.

Qantas also has a partnership with Airbnb through their site. Bookings earn 1 point per $1 spent.

Through hotel loyalty programs:

Another way to earn Qantas Points on hotel stays is through hotel loyalty programs. These hotel loyalty program points can be converted into Qantas Points from Accor Live Limitless (All), Choice Privileges, Hilton Honours, IHG Rewards Club, Marriott Bonvoy, Radisson Rewards and World of Hyatt, at varying rates.

Among may other hotel partners, hotel loyalty program points can also be converted into Qantas Points from Accor Live Limitless, Hilton Honors, IHG Rewards Club, Marriott Bonvoy, Radisson Rewards, Shangri-La Golden Circle and more, at varying rates.

When checking into the hotel, be sure to verbally confirm you wish to earn Qantas Points for your stay.

Directly with select partner hotels:

Some hotel brands will offer Qantas Points directly when you book with them. One example is TFE Hotels (who operated Vibe and Travelodge, among other brands) and Swiss-Belhotels.

When booking or checking into the hotel, be sure to provide your Qantas Frequent Flyer number to earn points for your stay.

Earn Qantas Frequent Flyer points on car hire and ground transport

Car rental

Qantas partners Avis and Budget for travellers to earn Qantas Points on eligible car rentals worldwide.
You can earn 4 points per $1 spent on the base rate within Australia and 700 Qantas Points per renal outside Australia.

Qantas also offers special promotions and discounts with Hertz and Thrifty.

Uber

No matter which airline you are flying with you can earn 1 point per dollar spent on Uber rides to and from most Australian airports.

Ground Transport

If you prefer black car service, Qantas partners with Brunel – a Worldwide Chauffeur Drive service. Travellers can earn up to 4 Qantas Points per A$1 spent, plus 100 bonus points when booking using the Brunel Worldwide app.

Through Qantas, you can also earn frequent flyer points with Qantas Transfers. Travel by private car, coach or transfer and your bookings can earn 1 Qantas Point per A$1 spent.

In Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney, travellers can use Redy2Go for fast, easy airport shuttle service. Eligible bookings earn 2 Qantas Points per $1 spent.

Earn Qantas Frequent Flyer points on credit cards

Earn Qantas Points on everyday purchases when you spend on an approved Qantas frequent flyer credit card. There are a range of banks offering cards from issuers, including American Express, Visa, Diners, American Express and more.

When choosing the best credit card for earning Qantas Frequent Flyer Points, it’s important to consider the following factors:

  • How points are earned:
    Direct earning cards automatically earn Qantas Points as you spend, depositing them into your account usually at the end of each statement period.
    Some cards allow you to opt-in to earn Qantas Points instead of credit card reward points and may require a yearly fee to opt-in to earning Qantas Frequent Flyer points with this type of credit card.
  • Number of points $1 spent:
    The earn rate is how many points you will earn when you make eligible purchases.
  • Interest rate:
    Frequent Flyer credit cards can have some of the highest interest rates on the market, so please do your due diligence in researching interest rates before signing up. The high-interest rate can outweigh the value of your earned frequent flyer points. As such, Frequent Flyer credit cards are best suited to people who regularly pay their balance in full each month to avoid interest.
  • Annual fee:
    While some Qantas cards charge $0 annual fee, the cards with the most competitive bonus point offer and added features such as lounge access usually have higher annual fees. Make sure the benefits outweigh the annual fee or speak to the bank about obtaining a fee waiver.
  • Points capping:
    Some Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards limit how many points cardholders can earn $1 spent. For example, some cards may allow you to earn a maximum of 50,000 Qantas Points in a year or 2 Qantas Points per $1 spent up to 6,000 Qantas Points per month (and 1 point $1 for the rest of the month.)

Earn Qantas Frequent Flyer points on shopping

Earn Qantas Points when shopping online by starting your purchase journey through  Qantas Shopping. While Qantas Shopping is set-up for Australian shoppers, many brands do ship internationally which allows you to earn Qantas Points.

How many Qantas Frequent Flyer points can I earn?

The number of Qantas Points you can earn will depend on how you’re earning them.

In the air, for example, Qantas Points are broadly calculated based on the distance of your flight, the type of fare you’ve purchased, and the cabin flown on each flight.

Expect to earn a higher number of miles on flights booked in business class or first class, on flexible airfares (including in economy) and on longer routes, versus shorter journeys booked in the lowest-priced economy fares, on which you’ll earn fewer miles.

On the ground, the number of Qantas Points you’ll collect is more closely linked to the number of dollars spent, such as with hotel partners, on car hire, or on eligible credit cards.

Qantas doesn’t limit the number of miles you can earn in total across all categories and methods, although some partners may apply individual caps or limits on Qantas Points you earn – such as credit card points capping or tiering, or car hire providers setting a limit on how many points can be earned from a single rental. 

What are Qantas Status Credits?

In the Qantas Frequent Flyer program, members can earn both ‘Qantas Points’ and ‘Status Credits’.

Qantas Points are the points you earn from all kinds of activities that can later be spent on a variety of rewards, such as flight bookings, upgrades, Points + Pay, or through the Qantas Shopping portal.

Status Credits determine your eligibility for an elite rank in the Qantas Frequent Flyer program: such as Silver, Gold, Platinum or Platinum One membership. They are usually earned by flying QF-numbered flights with Qantas, Jetstar, and partner airlines.

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What are the Qantas Frequent Flyer member tiers?

Qantas has four elite tier levels – Silver, Gold, Platinum and Platinum One – above the entry-level Bronze status.

Qantas also has an invitation-only tier, ‘Chairmans Lounge’, for which the qualification criteria are not published. However, these memberships are typically extended to Qantas’ most frequent premium flyers.

Here’s how you can earn status with Qantas and how you can retain them –

TIERHOW TO EARNHOW TO RETAIN
Bronze
Silver300 Status Credits250 Status Credits
Gold700 Status Credits600 Status Credits
Platinum1,400 Status Credits1,200 Status Credits
Platinum One3,600 Status Credits
(At least 2,700 on Qantas marked flights)
3,600 Status Credits
(At least 2,700 on Qantas marked flights)
Chairmans LoungeBy invitation onlyBy invitation only

Qantas uses a fixed 12-month window to assess retaining your tier. This is based upon which month you joined in. This means that you can earn Status Credits at any time over a consecutive 12-month period, and if you do not meet the requirements by the last day of the month before you joined, the status credits will be reset.

For example: if your Joining Month is June, your Qantas Status credits will reset on May 31st and you will begin June with zero status credits.

You can level up tiers at any time so long as you have earned the required number of status credits, so the earlier in your fixed 12-month window you move up to a higher status, the longer you will have access to the benefits the higher status brings.

All status levels – except Bronze – require you to fly four eligible Qantas, QantasLink or Jetstar flights in a membership year to retain your status, making it a little more difficult for those residing outside of Australia.

What are the benefits of Qantas Frequent Flyer status?

Qantas offers elite members some generous benefits, with even Silver-level members enjoying some complimentary lounge access and bonus points when flying.

Here are just some of the benefits you can look forward to:

  • Silver: Earn 50% more Qantas Points on Qantas and Jetstar and 25% more points on American Airlines, receive a somplimanetary lounge invitation, complimentary Q Bag Tag, and more.
  • Gold: Benefits of Silver, plus 75% more Qantas Points on Qantas, Jetstar and American Airlines, access to the Qantas Club (airport lounge) and partner lounges worldwide, priority check-in and priority boarding, and more.
  • Platinum: Perks of Platinum include all the benefits of Gold and 100% more Qantas Points on eligible flights with Qantas, Jetstar and American Airlines, access to the Qantas Business lounges (domestic) or Qantas First (international) lounges, and more.
  • Platinum One: Benefits of Platinum, plus complimentary Platinum membership for a family member of friend, Access to the Qantas VIP Service Team to assist with bookings and flight disruptions, two complimentary lounge invitations, access to exclusive privilages and events with MCA in Sydney and MONA in Hobart, and much more.

For the full list of benefits, head to the Qantas website.

Do Qantas Points expire?

Yes, Qantas Points do expire, with a lifespan of 18-months from the time you first earn them, though they can be maintained for longer periods providing that within the 18-month window you earn or use at least one Qantas point. (This does not include family transfers or when you convert points from Qantas Business Rewards).

Expiry takes place once per year at the end of the month in which you joined.

Qantas send a reminder two-months before their expiry date to alert you that they will be expiring, so be sure to enable email notifications for “Your points balance and news” option in your profile.

How do I spend and redeem Qantas Points?

Many of the ways that you earn Qantas Points are also ways that you can spend them: such as on flights with Qantas, Jetstar and their broader web of partner airlines.

Qantas Points can also be spent on the ground, such as on hotel stays and car hire.

Upgrades using Qantas Points are also possible on Qantas flights, subject to availability.

Your upgrade options will vary depending on the type of fare originally purchased, and the cabins offered on your flight.

Upgrades from economy straight to first class are not possible. You also can’t complete a ‘double upgrade’, such as by trading an economy class seat for business class, and then upgrading again from business class to first class.

What’s the best way to spend Qantas Points?

Qantas Points offer great value when used towards things like flight bookings, but only average value towards other uses such as for activities on the ground.

Some of the best ways to spend Qantas Points are generally considered to include business class and first class travel, on both Qantas and their network of partner airlines.

Do I need a Qantas Frequent Flyer card?

Qantas Frequent Flyer program do send membership packs with a membership card, though increasingly they are promoting the use of the Qantas app and digital membership card.

Silver, Gold, Platinum and Platinum One members also receive complimentary Q Bag Tags with their membership.

While a membership card is nice to have, all you really need to access your benefits is your Qantas membership number. Link this to your booking and your Qantas status will be reflected on your boarding pass, making things like lounge access and priority boarding easy.

Frequently asked questions

Can you use Qantas Points to upgrade on other airlines?

No, at this time this is not possible.

Can you convert credit card points into Qantas Points?

Absolutely, provided that Qantas is an eligible transfer partner of your credit card reward program, and your card is a type eligible for such transfers.

As different card issuers may adopt different conversion rates, minimum conversion amounts and other rules and limitations, contact your credit card issuer to verify your eligibility and the latest rules and rates as apply to your account.


Learn more about the Qantas Points Program:

How to join the Qantas Frequent Flyer Program for Free

5 Weird Things I Do To Earn Frequent Flyer Points


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    How to join the Qantas Frequent Flyer Program for free - Bitten by the Travel Bug
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