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WebFlyer Home > Programs > Ratings & Reviews

Ratings & Reviews

(Program Reviews - Side by Side Comparison - Website Reviews)


Qantas Airways Frequent Flyer


5.81
(137 ratings)

7.57

This program was reviewed and rated by our editors in October 2012. 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 flying Kangaroo

Australian residents have limited options when it comes to frequent flyer programs. While frequent flyers can choose to earn miles in the programs of international carriers, Qantas Frequent Flyer and Virgin Australia Velocity are key players in the loyalty space.

Qantas Frequent Flyer has doubled its membership base in the past eight years and now has over eight million members. Qantas Airways is the flag carrier of Australia and Qantas Frequent Flyer has over 500 partners and over 3,000 redemptions options. The airline announced this year that it will be adding Emirates as an airline partner, effective March 31, 2013 (subject to government and regulatory approvals).

While Qantas Frequent Flyer has a plethora of partners, members have criticized the program for its high fees and difficulty redeeming points for upgrades and awards. Elite members have access to more award seats than previously and this year Qantas began processing upgrade award requests much closer to the time of departure by adding "up to the gate" flight upgrades for eligible international bookings containing one passenger.


EARNING ABILITY:

5.94
Our
Rating:

7.50
Members earn points instead of miles with the Qantas Frequent Flyer program. Basic earning on Qantas is one point per mile flown on eligible flights with Qantas, oneworld and partner airlines. There are 25-, 50- and 100-percent class-of-service earning bonuses for premium economy, business and first Class, respectively. Some discount fare classes on partner airlines offer fewer points, as low as .25 point per mile. Qantas offers a minimum of 1,000 points on Qantas operated flights (less on some partner flights).

Elite-qualifying status credits are earned based on distance and class of service flown and vary between 10 and 360 status credits per one-way eligible flight.

Members can also earn points with non-flight partners, including credit card spending, hotel stays, shopping, car rentals, dining and other partners.

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AWARD CHOICES:

5.05
Our
Rating:

8.00
Qantas offers Classic and Any Seat awards. Classic awards are based on the flight distance, which is classified into 10 zones. A one-way Qantas flight up to 600 miles (Zone 1) is 8,000 points in economy, 12,000 points in premium economy, 16,000 points in business and 24,000 points in first. The highest zone, Zone 10, applies to flights between 9,601 and 15,000 miles and requires 64,000 points in economy, 96,000 points in premium economy, 128,000 points in business and 192,000 points in first.

Members can also redeem points to cover the taxes, fees and carrier charges for flights within Australia for 6,000 points per segment and within New Zealand for 5,600 points per segment.

Qantas has a separate award chart for Classic awards on eligible partner flights that has the same 10 zones, but the points required are slightly higher, starting at 10,000 points for an economy flight up to 600 miles.

Any Seat awards are available on Qantas and Jetstar flights plus you can combine your Qantas or Jetstar flights with a range of flights on other selected airlines for onward travel to other destinations. If a seat is available, members can redeem points for an Any Seat award flight. Members can also combine points and cash with Any Seat awards. The points required for Any Seat awards are not fixed and will vary for each flight. Flights with higher demand may require more points.

Domestic upgrade awards are allowed from discount economy or economy paid tickets on Qantas flights to business class. Domestic upgrades run from 5,000 to 24,000 points, depending on the distance and class of service. International upgrade requests on Qantas flights are allowed from economy and selected discount economy fare classes to premium economy or business, from premium economy to business and from business to first. International flight upgrade awards range from 2,000 points to 96,000 points. Upgrade awards are not available on Classic Awards.

Qantas charges an award assistance fee for all award bookings made with the help of a customer service representative of 6,000 points per person for international awards and 3,500 points for all other bookings.

Frequent Flyers may also redeem points for hotel vouchers (13,500-33,750 points) or car rental vouchers (between 15,700 and 31,400 points per rental day). Members can redeem points or points and cash for retail merchandise, gift cards, travel guides and other items through the Qantas Frequent Flyer Store.

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PARTNERSHIPS:

6.87
Our
Rating:

8.50
Qantas is a member of the oneworld alliance. Qantas' other airline partners include Aer Lingus, Aeropelican, Air Niugini, Airnorth, Air Pacific, Air Vanuata, Alaska Airlines, Alitalia, Brindabella Airlines, China Eastern, El Al, Jet Airways and South African Airways.

The list of hotel partners is equally impressive (over 70,000 partner hotels in over 300 locations worldwide). Members can earn three points per A$1 spent on eligible rates at selected hotels within Australia, such as Best Western, Choice, The Langham, Novotel, Radisson or Shangri-La hotels, among others. A flat 1,000 points per stay is available at Hilton, Hyatt and other hotels. Outside of Australia, members earn between 600 and 1,000 points per stay.

Rental car partners include Avis and Budget. Members earn 700 points per rental outside Australia and three points per dollar spent on time and kilometer charges within Australia.

Members also have several options to earn points when making purchases with a Qantas Frequent Flyer linked credit card, including cards issued by American Express, ANZ, Commonwealth Bank, NAB, Westpac, Bank of Melbourne, BankSA, Bankwest, Citibank, Diners Club, HSBC and Suncorp Bank.

Members who swipe their Qantas Frequent Flyer card at over 200 restaurants, bars and cafes around Australia can earn three points per A$1 spent.

Qantas Frequent Flyer also partners with department stores, gas stations, liquor stores, supermarkets, insurance, real estate and the list goes on.

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ELITE-LEVEL PROGRAM:

6.18
Our
Rating:

7.00
The Frequent Flyer program has four tiers above the Bronze entry level: Silver, Gold, Platinum and Platinum One. A member's tier is partly determined by the number of status credits earned, which is reviewed daily and based on activity since your membership anniversary. As soon as a member earns enough status credits and meets other criteria (members must also fly at least four segments on Qantas, QantasLink or Jetstar to qualify for tier status), he or she will automatically move up. All members receive a bonus of 8,000 points for every 500 Status credits earned in a membership year, up to four bonuses per year.

Status is retained for 12 months and at the end of your membership year (not calendar year) your status credits will be reset to zero.

Silver status is attained with 300 credits, and retained with 250. Benefits include complimentary advance seat selection with preferred seating, oneworld Ruby status, preferential access to Classic award seats, membership luggage tags with smart chip technology, additional baggage allowance on most Qantas flights, priority waitlist, standby and check-in, a 50-percent earning bonus, one complimentary Qantas Club lounge pass and priority telephone reservation service.

Gold status, yours for 700 credits (600 to retain) includes all the benefits of Silver, along with a 75-percent earning bonus, fast track through security at select airports, complimentary Qantas Club membership, oneworld Sapphire status, priority baggage handling and upgrades using points up to three hours before departure on selected Australian domestic Qantas flights.

Platinum level (1,400 credits to qualify, 1,200 to retain) includes all the benefits of Gold plus a 100-percent earning bonus, domestic business and first lounge access, oneworld Emerald status, complimentary Gold membership for a partner or 50,000 bonus points (if you earn 2,400 credits in a year), upgrade requests confirmed up to 48 hours prior to departure and guaranteed economy-class booking.

Platinum One is attained with 3,600 credits; a minimum of 2,700 credits must be earned on Qantas marketed flights. Platinum One members receive all the benefits of Platinum status plus additional benefits including access to extra Qantas Classic award seats, dedicated support from a special Platinum One team, access to extra seats for flight upgrade awards, preferential access to international upgrades for family members when using Platinum One member points, waived fees when booking award flights over the phone and complimentary exit row seating.

Qantas also has a lifetime elite recognition program and members who earn 7,000 credits will receive lifetime Silver benefits. Earn 14,000 status credits for lifetime Gold.

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RULES AND CONDITIONS:

4.49
Our
Rating:

6.50
Membership in Qantas Frequent Flyer requires a fee of A$82.50 for Australian residents, and NZ$50 for New Zealand residents. Residents of other countries can join without a fee.

Members may transfer a minimum of 5,000 and a maximum of 100,000 points to an eligible family member every 12 months. Members may also purchase points in blocks of 500 starting at A$20 per 500 points, up to 20,000 points per purchase, but may not purchase more than 15 percent of the points required for a specific award.

Points will not expire as long as the member remains active and earns or redeems points at least once every 18 months. Award flights may be issued in the name of the member or an eligible family member. Members can make changes to Classic awards for a fee of 3,500 points per passenger. Any seat award changes require a cash fee.

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SERVICE SUPPORT:

5.84
Our
Rating:

7.50
Customer reports about Qantas Frequent Flyer customer service have been mixed, from woeful to wonderful. When we called the number for U.S. residents, we were connected in a few minutes to a representative located in the Auckland call center who was able to answer our questions about upgrades for elite members. Members can also fill out an email form with their question or feedback about the Qantas Frequent Flyer program.

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ONLINE SERVICES:

6.30
Our
Rating:

8.00
Members may join Frequent Flyer, view and make changes to their reservations and account profile as well as book awards online. Members can use several points calculators to calculate how many points they will earn on a flight or how many points are needed for an award or upgrade. Traditional award charts are also available. Missing points requests can be made online.

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PLUS FEATURES:
Qantas partners with oneworld and has a wide range of earning and burning partners. All members, not just elite, earn a minimum 1,000 points on short flights. Elite status is relatively easy to attain and retain when flying in premium cabins. Lounge access is offered as an elite benefit for Gold and higher.

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MINUS FEATURES:
Members in Australia and New Zealand have to pay a one-time fee just to participate in the program. Members can only book awards for themselves and family members. The program also adds a fuel surcharge to award tickets. Members report that award availability for non-elite members redeeming for Qantas flights is generally poor and that redemption rates are high compared to other programs.

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INFORMATION:
In Australia
Phone: 13 11 31
Fax: 1300 305 747
Mail: GPO Box 4357, Melbourne VIC 3001

In the USA/Canada
Phone: (800) 227-4220
Fax: (520) 741-5331

  Earning Ability Award Choices Partnerships Elite-Level Rules & Conditions Service Support Online Services Overall Rating
Our
Rating:
7.50 8.00 8.50 7.00 6.50 7.50 8.00 7.57
Member
Rating:
5.94 5.05 6.87 6.18 4.49 5.84 6.30 5.81

(137 ratings)

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