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WebFlyer Home > Programs > Ratings & Reviews

Ratings & Reviews

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Air New Zealand Airpoints

(62 ratings)


This program was reviewed and rated by our editors in March 2014. Changes in the program past this date are possible, especially program partner information. We recommend you subscribe to the #1 source of frequent flyer information, Inside Flyer Magazine, to get the most current information possible.

The Airline of Middle Earth

Air New Zealand dates back to 1940 when its forerunner airline, Tasman Empire Airways Limited (TEAL) was incorporated. The airline, now known as Air New Zealand, joined the Star Alliance in March 1999 and currently flies to 16 countries within Oceania, Asia, Europe and North America.

Airpoints was one of the first frequent flyer programs to tie their frequent flyer currency into the amount the customer spent instead of a program based on the miles flown. Airpoints Dollars can be viewed just like cash—if you have enough Airpoints Dollars in your account, you can redeem them for any seat on any flight.



Airpoints Dollars are awarded based on the price of the airfare. The rates were recently updated with new rates going into effect March 31, 2014. There is a “look-up table” posted online so that members can see how many Airpoints Dollars you will earn for your flight by specific fare and cabin class and you can also see how many Airpoints Dollars and Status Points you’ll earn when selecting a fare online.

For example, one-way flights between Auckland and Wellington will earn one to two Airpoints Dollars per grabaseat flight, three to five Airpoints Dollars per Smart Saver flight and nine to 16 Airpoints Dollars per Flexi Plus flight. One way-flights between Auckland and San Francisco will earn 39 to 50 Airpoints Dollars in Economy Global Saver, 53 to 80 Airpoints Dollars in Economy Global Flexi, 105 to 203 Airpoints Dollars in premium economy and 280 to 427 Airpoints Dollars in business class; with five to 10 more Airpoints Dollars awarded if a domestic add on applies. No Airpoints Dollars are earned with greenlight http://www.grabaseat.co.nz flights.

Members can earn additional Airpoints Dollars through airline partners, credit cards, hotels, rental cars, shopping and other partners.

Members can also pool their Airpoints Dollars by creating a Shairpoints account.



One Airpoints Dollar equals NZ$1 and can be redeemed for any seat, on any flight with no capacity controls or blackout dates. The number of Airpoints Dollars required for an award flight fluctuates according to the fare cost of a flight. Airport and government taxes on international flights must be paid for with cash. Domestic fares can be paid solely with Airpoints Dollars. No credit card surcharge is charged if a flight is paid for with Airpoints Dollars.

Members can use Airpoints Dollars to book one-way tickets to any destination and use cash for the return flight. At the time that you book a flight with Airpoints Dollars, you can use additional Airpoints Dollars for seat assignments or an extra bag. Upgrade awards are also offered. OneUp upgrades are available for international flights. Members make an offer for the upgrade and can then pay with Airpoints Dollars if they wish. Air New Zealand takes several things into consideration when reviewing OneUp upgrade requests such as the value of the offer and the value of other offers for the same cabin class, your Airpoints member status and more. Fixed-rate upgrades are available for Elite members using Airpoints Dollars and start at 180 Airpoints Dollars. These upgrades can be confirmed in advance if upgrade seats are available or may be confirmed at the airport.

Star Alliance airline partner awards are available and have fixed redemption amounts. There is an online Airline Partner Reward Chart that members can access. For example, for one-way flights between New Zealand and Australia, the cost in Airpoints Dollars is 230 in economy class, 375 in premium economy, 720 in business class and 945 in first class. The cost between New Zealand and North America is 750 in economy class, 1,120 in premium economy, 2,040 in business class and 2,200 in first class. Star Alliance upgrade awards are also available and are confirmed at the time of request based on availability. Award flights are also available with non-Star Alliance airline partners including Cathay Pacific, Etihad Airways, Jet Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia and have restrictions.

Companion award tickets using your Airpoints Dollars are available for international flights up to 355 days in advance. These awards have restrictions and cannot be used when redeeming Airpoints Dollars for the member’s ticket.

Airpoints Dollars can also be used for car rentals, hotel rooms, Koru lounge membership and to purchase a range of goods at http://www.airpointsstore.co.nz



ir New Zealand is a member of the Star Alliance and Airpoints has partnerships with other airlines including Cathay Pacific, Etihad Airways, Jet Airways, Virgin Atlantic Airways and Virgin Australia. The agreements vary and sometimes apply only for certain flights. Status Points are offered on Star Alliance airline partners and on Air New Zealand flight numbers operated by Virgin Australia between New Zealand and Australia or operated by Cathay Pacific between Auckland and Hong Kong. There is a look-up table online that displays the possible Airpoints Dollars and Status Points that could be earned with all partner airline flights.

Airpoints offers several co-branded credit cards where members can earn Airpoints Dollars and sometimes Status Points when using the cards. Credit cards include the Air New Zealand Airpoints credit card issued by Kiwibank, Air New Zealand American Express, ANZ Airpoints Visa and GlobalPlus Credit Cards. The only card that offers a higher Airpoints Dollars earn rate when purchasing Air New Zealand fares is the Kiwibank card, offering up to one Airpoints Dollar per NZ$65 spent compared to earning one Airpoints Dollar per NZ$75 spent on all other purchases. There is also an innovative OneSmart prepaid MasterCard that can hold up to four currencies at the same time. Members earn one Airpoints Dollar for every NZ$200 you spend in New Zealand or for every NZ$100 you spend overseas. Members can also use their OneSmart account and the Air New Zealand Airpoints Standard or Platinum credit card to purchase Airpoints Dollars to top up their Airpoints account.

Hotel partners include Accor (one Airpoints Dollar per NZ$15 spent or 20 Airpoints Dollars per stay), Choice (one Airpoints Dollar per NZ$20 spent or 10 Airpoints Dollars per stay), Hilton (one Airpoints Dollar per US$25 or convert 10,000 HHonors points to 20 Airpoints Dollars), IHG (10 or 20 Airpoints Dollars per stay or convert 10,000 IHG Rewards points to 25 Airpoints Dollars), Langham (10 or 20 Airpoints Dollars per stay), Millennium (one Airpoints Dollar per NZ$15 spent), Starwood (20 or 40 Airpoints Dollars per stay or convert 65 Starpoints to one Airpoints Dollar) and The Rarotongan Beach Resort & Spa (one Airpoints Dollar per NZ$20 spent).

Car rental partners include Avis and Budget with the earning rate of 2.50 Airpoints Dollars per rental day. Members earn one Airpoints Dollar for every NZ$50 spent at Air New Zealand Taxis. Members can earn Airpoints Dollars at over 3,000 Fly Buys outlets or when shopping at JR Duty Free at Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington airports as well as online. Members can also earn when purchasing travel insurance or taking out a mortgage and at retail outlets including an online Air New Zealand wine store.



The elite-level program has three levels: Silver, Gold and Elite.

Status Points earned are linked to the airfare, and the more you spend on your flight, the more Status Points you will receive. Status Points are also earned on some airline partners including all Star Alliance airlines.

Silver is reached when earning 450 status points over a 12-month period with 225 of those points earned on qualifying flights (Air New Zealand and Star Alliance flights). To retain status, you need 405 status points with 202 on qualifying flights. Silver membership offers two single-use lounge passes per year, discounted business class flight awards and one Recognition Upgrade for an Air New Zealand flight confirmable up to six days prior to travel. Silver members also get Star Alliance Silver status.

Gold is reached when earning 900 status points over a 12-month period with 450 of these points earned on qualifying flights. To retain Gold status, you need 810 status points with 405 on qualifying flights. Gold members get all the benefits of Silver, with a number of additions. They receive two Recognition Upgrades, lounge privileges that include full access to Koru Lounges within New Zealand, and to all Air New Zealand International Lounges and entrance for one guest on the day of travel. Gold members receive Gold status within the Star Alliance. Gold members can also access reserved frequent flyer seating located in the front of economy on most Air New Zealand flights with these seats generally offering 2-4 inches more legroom than other seats. They also receive a hotel room or car rental upgrade. As long as Gold members retain Gold or move up to Elite status, their Airpoints Dollars will not expire.

The highest status, Elite, is reached when earning 1,500 status points over a 12-month period with 900 of those points earned on Air New Zealand flights. To retain status, you need 1,350 status points with 810 on Air New Zealand flights. Elite members receive expanded benefits including the ability to roll over Status Points. Elite members can roll over the Status Points earned over and above the qualifying threshold Points in a membership year. If an Elite member earns over 2,400 Status Points, with 1,400 earned on Air New Zealand flights in a membership year, they will automatically receive a bonus Elite year to use in the future. These bonus years will be stored in the member’s Airpoints account until they’re needed. Other Elite benefits include the opportunity to nominate a spouse or partner to receive an Elite Partner card. Elite gifts are given to members when they reach 2,500 and 5,000 Status Points after their last requalification date, including items such as dining, hotel nights and a flight upgrade. Elite members enjoy the same lounge privileges as Gold members, with the additional right to bring up to five guests (subject to space). In addition to two Recognition Upgrades, Elite members get an additional short-haul Recognition Upgrade for use on trans-Tasman and Pacific Island short-haul flights.

There is also an invitation-only Elite Priority One membership level for the top individual spending travelers.



Airpoints Dollars expire at the end of the fourth year after the membership year in which they were earned except for current Gold and Elite members whose miles do not expire or if a member holds an Airpoints credit card. Members can gift awards, but only to those indicated in a gifting register. There is no cash plus Airpoints Dollars award option, but you can redeem Airpoints Dollars for the outbound flight and pay for the return flight with a credit card or Poli if you make two separate bookings when booking online. Retroactive credit for flights taken before you sign up as a member of Airpoints is allowed as long as the flight was completed less than 30 days before your date of joining. Airpoints Dollars can be purchased through a OneSmart account.

An Airpoints NZ$50 joining fee may apply but is currently being waived. Membership is complimentary for Koru members and customers who travel business class on an Air New Zealand international flight within the last 30 days.



Members can call Airpoints for customer service and use the online form to search for answers to questions and ask questions if they don’t find the answer they need online.



Online features allow Airpoints members to check their Airpoints Dollars and Status Points and track account activity. Online award booking for hotel awards, car rental awards and Air New Zealand flight awards is offered, but companion awards, multi-stop awards and flights that include a segment on a partner airline require a call to the service center. Call center booking fees range from NZ$15 per one-way domestic flight award within New Zealand to NZ$100 per booking for Star Alliance and partner airline awards. Airpoints Dollars can be redeemed to cover the cost of call center fees.

No capacity controls and no blackout dates are an attractive offer for members concerned about award availability. If you plan in advance and travel when demand is low, you can spend fewer Airpoints Dollars for your flight. Air New Zealand is a member of the largest global airline alliance.

Elite members do not get bonus Airpoints Dollars for Air New Zealand flights as a benefit of their status. Old school frequent flyer program members who like to make the most of membership often do not like revenue-based FFPs.

Program Information:
Air New Zealand Airpoints Contact Centre
Private Bag 93537
North Shore City 0740
New Zealand

Phone: 0800 Airpoints (0800 247 764)

In the U.S.:
Phone: (800) 262-1234


  Earning Ability Award Choices Partnerships Elite-Level Rules & Conditions Service Support Online Services Overall Rating
7.00 7.50 7.50 7.50 7.00 8.00 7.00 7.36
5.38 6.5 6.87 6.09 5 6.30 6.24 6.05

(62 ratings)


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