Saturday, 22 June 2019

How changes to the Qantas Frequent Flyer Program affect you

Qantas has announced wide-ranging changes to its Frequent Flyer program, which has over 12.7 million members.

This time around the news is mainly positive. 
Qantas Frequent Flyers will soon pay significantly less fees for international reward flights, have access to more seats and enjoy more rewards for earning points on the ground as part of the biggest overhaul to the loyalty program in its 32-year history.
Representing a $25 million investment, the changes will improve how members are recognised and rewarded as well as how they earn and redeem points.
The major initiatives, to be rolled out to members over the next 12 months, include adding more than a million extra reward seats available annually on Qantas and new partner airlines. The
The additional costs associated with flights booked with points will be reduced; saving members on average $200 per return journey.
There will also be changes to the points required for reward seats on domestic and international flights including an up to 10% reduction in the number of points required for international economy Classic Reward seats.
On the downside Qantas will Increase the points required for upgrades and Classic Reward seats in premium cabins "to better reflect the value of this premium experience". 
Qantas will also create a new tiered Points Club program to better reward members who earn most of their points through on-the-ground transactions and introduce Lifetime Platinum status, the ultimate recognition for the airline's most loyal flyers.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the changes are about strengthening Qantas Frequent Flyer to keep delivering for its almost 13 million members.
“The Qantas Frequent Flyer program has always been about rewarding customers for their loyalty," he said. "These changes are about making it easier for members to access those rewards and help to keep them highly engaged, which in turn is good news for our business as a whole.
“We know the majority of our members want to use their points to take a dream trip overseas, so we are adding more reward seats including First, Business and Premium Economy, to places like London, Los Angeles, Tokyo and Singapore as well as slashing carrier charges.
“While the points required for business class seats on international and domestic flights will increase slightly, it is the first increase in 15 years and the product has improved a lot in that time.”
The $25 million investment is comprised of making more seats available for frequent flyers as well as the reduction in carrier charges. Increased engagement in the program is expected to offset this within the first year.
Joyce said the program overhaul would ensure the national carrier's loyalty program remained one of the most attractive and successful in the world.
"Since its inception in 1987, the frequent flyer program has grown from 50,000 members who could only earn points on travel to almost 13 million members who can earn points with more than 300 partners. The majority of the points earned across the program are used on travel. Four flight redemptions are made every minute and sixty upgrades are confirmed every hour."

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