Qantas Has Just Announced Massive Changes To Its Frequent Flyer Program
Qantas has vowed to unlock more than one million extra seats to frequent flyers as part of the "biggest overhaul" to the airline's loyalty program in its 32-year history.
International travellers flying on the most in-demand routes at the most popular times will benefit the most.
There will be a boost to 'redemption seats' on long-haul flights to London, New York and Singapore, particularly during school holidays, meaning more families can use their points to travel.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce and Qantas Loyalty CEO Olivia Wirth made the announcement in Sydney this morning.
Carrier charges associated with points-based purchases will also be slashed by up to 50 percent on international flights which equates to a $200 saving for return passengers on International flights, Joyce said.
Points are also getting a makeover.
Passengers will use up to 10 per cent fewer points for an international economy “classic reward” seat.
"This is one of the most popular areas for people to redeem points," Joyce said.
It's not all good news, premium and business class seats will cost you 15 percent more points from today. You'll also have to hand over 9 percent more points for an upgrade -- the first hike in 15 years.
Finally, Qantas will introduce a new 'Points Club' program late in 2019 for those who tend to earn their points on the ground.
Members will get club, flight and travel benefits which includes lounge access but they will need to pass annual criteria to remain a member, which won't be easy for many.
The entry-level tier can be accessed through earning 150,000 points on the ground.
Joyce said that the $25 million investment ensures the airline can keep delivering for it's 13 million members.
"We've heard members and we've acted," he said. "It's all about more seats, fewer fees and better value for our customers."
The airline's loyalty program as a whole, which allows customers to earn points by booking flights, shopping at retailers including Woolworths, and using linked credit cards, is the biggest in Australia and one of the most successful in the world.
Last year, Qantas's Loyalty division made $372 million profit, close to half what it made from its entire domestic airline business.