Qantas credit cards

Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards earn Qantas Points you can use for flights and upgrades. Many Qantas credit cards also come with sign up bonuses, lounge access, status credits, and travel insurance.

By   |   Verified by David Boyd   |   Updated 16th November 2022

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Comparing Qantas credit cards

Westpac Altitude Platinum Credit Card (Qantas)

On website

FeaturedApply by 5 December 2022

Westpac Altitude Platinum Credit Card (Qantas)

Rewards program

Qantas Frequent Flyer

Points per $1 spent

0.5 points

Sign up bonus

70,000 points

Annual fee

$99.00 for 1st year

Highlights

  • Receive 70,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases within 90 days of card approval. Terms and conditions apply.
  • Transfer your balance at 0% p.a. for 24 months (1 % balance transfer fee applies). Reverts to cash advance rate of 21.49% p.a.
  • $99 p.a. annual fee for the first year then $200 p.a. annual fee thereafter (inclusive of $50 Qantas Rewards opt-in annual fee).


From 1 January 2022, earn 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 up to a maximum of $100,000 spent on eligible purchases annually. Bonus Qantas Points not included in the cap.


Pros

  • 70,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $4,000 in 90 days.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers.
  • Additional savings with the $99 first-year annual fee ($200 p.a. thereafter).
  • Comes with complimentary insurance covers which include overseas medical and purchase security.

Cons

  • There is a 1% balance transfer fee.
  • Only up to 45 days interest-free on purchases.
St.George Amplify Signature Credit Card (Qantas)

On website

Rewards program

Amplify Qantas

Points per $1 spent

0.75 points

Sign up bonus

90,000 points

Annual fee

$279.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • Earn up to 90,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases within 90 days from card approval. Exclusions apply.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers with 1% balance transfer fee on amounts transferred.
  • Includes complimentary overseas travel insurance for up to 6 months


From 1 January 2022, earn 0.75 Qantas Points per $1 up to a maximum of $250,000 spent on eligible purchases annually. Bonus Qantas Points not included in the cap.


Pros

  • The 90,000 bonus Qantas Points.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers.
  • Includes complimentary overseas travel insurance for up to 6 months

Cons

  • There is a 1% balance transfer fee.
  • The ongoing annual fee is high at $279 p.a.
Qantas American Express Discovery Credit Card

On website

New offerApply by 29 November 2022

Qantas American Express Discovery Credit Card

Rewards program

Qantas Frequent Flyer

Points per $1 spent

0.75 points

Sign up bonus

N/A

Annual fee

$0.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • Enjoy 0% interest on purchases for 12 months. Reverts to 21.99% p.a. thereafter.
  • Earn 0.75 Qantas Point for every $1 spent on Card purchases, except spend at government bodies in Australia where you will earn 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent.
  • Pay no annual card fee.
  • Up to 4 Additional Cards for family members or friends with no extra fee.

Pros

  • 0% interest on purchases for 12 months.
  • Ongoing $0 annual fee, a rarity among rewards credit cards.
  • Earn 0.75 Qantas points per $1 spent and 0.5 Qantas points per $1 for government spend.
  • No cap on the number of points you can earn.
  • Add up to 4 additional cards for family members or friends with no extra fee.
  • Complimentary Card Purchase Cover and Card Refund Cover.

Cons

  • There is a 3% foreign transaction fee.
  • Lacks complimentary travel insurance.
  • There is no access to a concierge service.
American Express Qantas Ultimate Credit Card

On website

Rewards program

Qantas Frequent Flyer

Points per $1 spent

1.25 points

Sign up bonus

55,000 points

Annual fee

$450.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • Receive 55,000 bonus Qantas Points when you apply online, are approved, and spend $3,000 on your new Card within the first 3 months. T&Cs apply. New Card Members only.
  • Earn 1.25 Qantas Points for every $1 spent on card purchases, except spend at government bodies in Australia where you will earn 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent.
  • Get 2 complimentary Qantas Club lounge invitations each year.

Pros

  • Earn 55,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the criteria.
  • Excellent earn rates on everyday spend. Earns points on payments to the ATO.
  • Access to the American Express Lounge Sydney and Melbourne airport after your first card spend on the card for Qantas products and services each anniversary year.
  • 2 complimentary Qantas Club lounge invitations each year.
  • $450 Qantas Travel Credit each year (conditions apply).
  • Add cards for up to four family and friends at no cost.

Cons

  • The annual fee of $450.
  • There is no concierge service, even though it's a high end card.
  • Balance transfers are not possible.
  • Transactions in a foreign currency attract a fee.
St.George Amplify Platinum Credit Card (Qantas)

On website

Offer extendedApply by 31 December 2022

St.George Amplify Platinum Credit Card (Qantas)

Rewards program

Amplify Qantas

Points per $1 spent

1 point

Sign up bonus

60,000 points

Annual fee

$99.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • Earn up to 60,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $3,000 on eligible purchases within 90 days from card approval. Exclusions apply.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers with 1% balance transfer fee. Reverts to cash advance rate.
  • Earn 0.5 points per $1 spent (uncapped). Plus, get a complimentary Qantas membership fee. Saving you $99.50!

From 1 January 2022, earn 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 up to a maximum of $100,000 spent on eligible purchases annually. Bonus Qantas Bonus Qantas Points not included in the cap.


Pros

  • The 60,000 bonus Qantas Points.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers.
  • Complimentary travel and purchase insurances.

Cons

  • There is a 1% balance transfer fee.
  • Points earning rate of 0.5 points is lower than others.
The Qantas American Express Premium Card

On website

Rewards program

Qantas Frequent Flyer

Points per $1 spent

1 point

Sign up bonus

30,000 points

Annual fee

$249.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • Receive 30,000 bonus Qantas Points when you apply online, are approved and spend $3,000 in 3 months. New Amex Card Members only.
  • Relax with 2 complimentary Qantas Club invitations every year (conditions apply).
  • Complimentary domestic and international travel insurance.

Pros

  • 30,000 bonus Qantas points for signing up and hitting the spending target.
  • Earn points on your everyday spend. Also earns points at a reduced rate on government spend.
  • Give up to 4 of your friends and family a card — at no extra cost — to earn more points.
  • $450 Qantas Travel Credit, which is fairly easy to trigger with your first Qantas purchase each year.
  • Comes with complimentary card purchase cover and travel insurance.

Cons

  • There is an annual fee of $249.
  • The purchase rate is quite high, but can be avoided with responsible use.
  • No balance transfer facility.
Bendigo Bank Qantas Platinum Credit Card

Rewards program

Qantas Frequent Flyer

Points per $1 spent

0.6 points

Sign up bonus

N/A

Annual fee

$149.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • 0% p.a. up to 20 months on purchases (reverts to 19.99% p.a.)
  • Earn 0.6 Qantas Points per $1 spent.
  • 180 days of comprehensive travel insurance.
  • Includes extended warranty on covered purchases and 90-day purchase protection on stolen or accidentally damaged purchases (conditions apply).

Pros

  • 0% p.a. up to 20 months on purchases (reverts to 19.99% p.a.)
  • Earn 0.6 Qantas Points per $1 spent.
  • 180 days of comprehensive travel insurance.
  • Up to 55 days interest free.

Cons

  • There is no introductory balance transfer offer.
  • The 20,000 cap on reward earnings per statement period.
  • ATO spend does not earn points.
Qantas Premier Platinum Credit Card

Apply by 29 March 2023

Qantas Premier Platinum Credit Card

Rewards program

Qantas Frequent Flyer

Points per $1 spent

1 point

Sign up bonus

60,000 points

Annual fee

$249.00 for 1st year

Highlights

  • Earn up to 80,000 bonus Qantas Points. Receive 60,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $3,000 or more on eligible purchases within 3 months from card approval. Plus an additional 20,000 bonus points if you have not earned Qantas Points with a credit card in the last 12 months. Terms and Conditions apply.
  • Enjoy 0% on Balance Transfer for 18 months with a 1% Balance Transfer fee. Reverts to Cash Advance rate, thereafter. No interest-free days apply on retail purchases while you have a balance transfer.
  • Save with the reduced annual fee of $249 p.a. for the first year. An ongoing annual fee of $299 p.a. applies in the 2nd year.

Pros

  • Earn up to 80,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the criteria.
  • 0% p.a. for 18 months on balance transfers.
  • Additional savings with the $249 first-year annual fee ($299 p.a. thereafter).
  • Comes with complimentary travel insurance.

Cons

  • There is a 1% balance transfer fee.
Bank of Melbourne Amplify Platinum Credit Card (Qantas)

Offer extendedApply by 31 December 2022

Bank of Melbourne Amplify Platinum Credit Card (Qantas)

Rewards program

Amplify Qantas

Points per $1 spent

0.5 points

Sign up bonus

60,000 points

Annual fee

$99.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • Earn up to 60,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $3,000 on eligible purchases within 90 days from card approval. Exclusions apply.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers with 1% balance transfer fee. Reverts to cash advance rate.
  • Earn 0.5 points per $1 spent (uncapped). Plus, get a complimentary Qantas membership fee. Saving you $99.50!


From 1 January 2022, earn 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 up to a maximum of $100,000 spent on eligible purchases annually. Bonus Qantas Bonus Qantas Points not included in the cap.


Pros

  • The 60,000 bonus Qantas Points.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers.
  • Complimentary travel and purchase insurances.

Cons

  • There is a 1% balance transfer fee.
  • Points earning rate of 0.5 points is lower than others.
BankSA Amplify Platinum Credit Card (Qantas)

Apply by 31 December 2022

BankSA Amplify Platinum Credit Card (Qantas)

Rewards program

Amplify Qantas

Points per $1 spent

0.5 points

Sign up bonus

60,000 points

Annual fee

$99.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • Earn up to 60,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $3,000 on eligible purchases within 90 days from card approval. Exclusions apply.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers with 1% balance transfer fee. Reverts to cash advance rate.
  • Earn 0.5 points per $1 spent (uncapped). Plus, get a complimentary Qantas membership fee. Saving you $99.50!


From 1 January 2022, earn 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 up to a maximum of $100,000 spent on eligible purchases annually. Bonus Qantas Bonus Qantas Points not included in the cap.


Pros

  • The 60,000 bonus Qantas Points.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers.
  • Complimentary travel and purchase insurances.

Cons

  • There is a 1% balance transfer fee.
  • Points earning rate of 0.5 points is lower than others.
NAB Qantas Rewards Signature Card

Rewards program

Qantas Frequent Flyer

Points per $1 spent

1 point

Sign up bonus

90,000 points

Annual fee

$295.00 for 1st year

Highlights

  • Earn up to 120,000 bonus Qantas Points. Receive 90,000 bonus points when you spend $3,000 in the first 60 days from account approval date and 30,000 bonus points when you keep your card open for over 12 months. Terms and conditions apply.
  • Enjoy 0% on balance transfers for 12 months with 3% Balance Transfer Fee.
  • Reduced first-year annual fee of $295 p.a. instead of $395 p.a. (saving you $100).

Pros

  • Complimentary Qantas Frequent Flyer membership fee valued at $99.50.
  • Six complimentary insurances when you make an eligible purchase.
  • Earn 1 Qantas Point per $1 spent on everyday purchases up to $5,000 per statement period then 0.05 pts per $1 spent thereafter (capped at $20,000).

Cons

  • Annual fee of $395 p.a. is quite high.
BankSA Amplify Signature Credit Card (Qantas)

Apply by 31 December 2022

BankSA Amplify Signature Credit Card (Qantas)

Rewards program

Amplify Qantas

Points per $1 spent

0.75 points

Sign up bonus

90,000 points

Annual fee

$279.00 p.a. ongoing

Highlights

  • Earn up to 90,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases within 90 days from card approval. Exclusions apply.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers with 1% balance transfer fee on amounts transferred.
  • Includes complimentary overseas travel insurance for up to 6 months


From 1 January 2022, earn 0.75 Qantas Points per $1 up to a maximum of $250,000 spent on eligible purchases annually. Bonus Qantas Points not included in the cap.


Pros

  • The 90,000 bonus Qantas Points.
  • 0% p.a. for 24 months on balance transfers.
  • Includes complimentary overseas travel insurance for up to 6 months

Cons

  • There is a 1% balance transfer fee.
  • The ongoing annual fee is high at $279 p.a.

How Qantas credit cards work

Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards are a type of rewards points credit card where the points come in the form of Qantas Frequent Flyer points.

Almost all major Australian credit card providers offer at least one Qantas Frequent Flyer credit card, with more than 50 to choose from.

There is a fee to enrol into the Qantas Frequent Flyer program. However, most Qantas credit cards come with free entry into the program if you’re a newcomer.

Earning Qantas Points

  • Earn Qantas Points on everyday spending. Eligible purchases made with a Qantas credit card earn Qantas Points which are credited directly to the cardholder’s Qantas Frequent Flyer account. Points earned from card purchases are pooled with other points in the account (earned from purchasing Qantas flights, for example). They can be redeemed for award flights, seat upgrades, or other goods and services.
  • Earn more points on cash bookings. If you frequently travel, taking flights for business or leisure, you can earn more Qantas Points per dollar spent when you pay for Qantas bookings with a Qantas credit card.

What you can redeem Qantas Points for

As a member of Qantas Frequent Flyer you can use your online account to keep tabs on your points and access Qantas online store, which offers over 1,000 choices for reward redemption.

  • Qantas flights and services. You can redeem Qantas Points for flights, upgrade your seat, book accommodation and travel accessories, and car rentals.
  • Goods and services from Qantas partners. You can also redeem Qantas Points on various non-travel-related products and services, including vouchers to spend with Qantas’ partners. The Qantas online store also features a rolling program of offers, prizes, and special offers for members.

What to compare when choosing a Qantas credit card

Although how many points you can get is undoubtedly an important feature, don't forget to include the value of any complimentary benefits when comparing.

Many Qantas credit cards come with free benefits and perks worth hundreds of dollars (if used). Since no two cards are identical, compare the details and determine which features have the most value for you.

Qantas Points earn rates

Points earning rates are normally expressed in terms of the number of points per dollar spent, e.g. 0.75 Qantas Points per dollar spent on eligible purchases.

The points earning rate varies from card to card, with the more expensive premium cards typically having a higher points earning rate. An individual Qantas credit card can have more than one earning rate, for example, a higher earning rate on purchases from Qantas, and a lower earning rate on government purchases.

Points caps and thresholds

While some cards limit the number of Qantas Points a cardholder can earn in any month or year, other cards have points caps or thresholds.

A points cap is an absolute limit on the number of Qantas Points that can be earned in any month or year. Once the cap is reached, the points earning rate for the remainder of the period falls to 0 points per dollar spent. The cap may be expressed in terms of dollars spent (e.g. Qantas Points earned on only the first $5,000 of eligible purchases per month) or in terms of Qantas Points earned (e.g. a cap of 7,500 Qantas points per month).

A points threshold is a limit beyond which the earning rate falls for the remainder of the month or year. For example, a card may have a 1.0 Qantas Points per dollar earning rate, up to a threshold of $5,000 of spending per month, beyond which the earning rate drops to 0.5 points per dollar for the remainder of the month.

Bonus points

Many Qantas Frequent Flyer Points credit cards offer substantial bonus points as an incentive to new cardholders. A target spending amount is usually attached to these offers. For example, a new cardholder may receive 60,000 Qantas Points for spending $2,000 on eligible purchases in the first 90 days of holding the card. These large bonuses are useful to anyone collecting points to redeem for a long-haul international award flight.

Eligible purchases

Qantas Frequent Flyer Points credit cards stipulate that only ‘eligible purchases’ will earn points. In practice, this means that cash transactions and cash equivalent transactions do not earn points. So no points will be earned on cash advances, balance transfers, purchases of traveller's cheques and foreign currency, card interest charges and fees, and transfers from a Qantas Points credit card account to another bank account.

As well as these types of cash transactions, many cards exclude government transactions (like payments to the ATO, Australia Post, vehicle registration and licences, local government rates, and fines) as eligible to earn Qantas Points. If a Qantas credit card earns points on government-related transactions, it will generally earn Qantas Points at a lower rate. Some cards also exclude gambling transactions and BPAY payments from earning Qantas Points.

Travel benefits and perks

Many Qantas credit cards offer travel-related benefits, including passes to access airport lounges, complimentary travel insurance, and status credits.

  • Airport lounge passes. Platinum and black Qantas credit cards often come with several passes giving cardholders access to Qantas Club lounges around Australia and airport lounges at international airports.
  • Complimentary travel insurance. This benefit comes with many of the best Qantas credit cards, covering the cardholder and possibly family and friends on bookings paid for with the card.
  • Status credits. As well as earning Qantas Points, some cards reward cardholders with Status Credits. This makes it easier to attain a higher tier of Qantas Frequent Flyer membership.

Qantas Frequent Flyer program membership as a complimentary benefit

The Qantas Frequent Flyer program has a joining fee ($99.50 at the time of writing). You must be a member to earn Qantas Points with a Qantas credit card.

However, you can get free membership when you apply for a Qantas credit card and are approved.

How to check if a Qantas credit card is worth it

The card with the highest Qantas Points earning rate may not be the best one for you because the amount you spend each year may not be enough to justify the annual fee.

  1. Work out how many points you’re likely to earn in a year from your annual credit card spending by looking at how much you spent on your current credit card in the previous year.
  2. Multiply the dollars you spent by the Qantas Points earning rate per dollar on the card you are considering.
  3. If you place a conservative value of 1.0 cents on each Qantas Point, you’ll be able to decide if it’s worth paying the card’s annual fee.

Example

  • Annual amount spent: $18,000
  • Earn rate: 0.75 Qantas points per dollar
  • Total points earned in a year: 13,500 Qantas Points
  • Points value: 13,500 Qantas Points = $135 (based on 1 Qantas Point being equivalent to 1 cent)
  • Annual card fee: $99.

In this case, the value of the points exceeds the cost of the annual fee, so it’s worth having the card (which may also have other valuable complimentary benefits such as lounge access).

You may be able to extract a much greater value than 1.0 cents from each Qantas Point, depending on what type of award seat you can secure. If you use your points for redemptions other than flights, you’re likely to get a value of only 0.5 cents per point, or even less.

Learn about credit cards for Qantas Points

Our top tips for selecting and using a credit card for Qantas Points.

  • FAQs

  • Pros & cons

  • Tips

Are Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards worth it?

A Qantas Frequent Flyer credit card can be beneficial if you redeem the points earned for business and first class redemptions with Qantas or one of their partner airlines. However, not repaying the balance in full each month quickly devalues any Qantas Points earned.

Are there any Qantas credit cards with no annual fee?

Most credit cards for Qantas Points have an annual fee, but there are some with no annual fee. Generally a Qantas credit card with no annual fee earns fewer Qantas Points per dollar than average.

Do balance transfers earn Qantas Points?

No. Balance transfers do not earn Qantas Points. This is the case for every Qantas credit card, even those with introductory balance transfer offers.

Do cash advances earn Qantas Points?

No. Cash advances, or any transaction classified as a cash advance such as buying foreign currency, do not earn Qantas Points.

Does cancelling a Qantas credit card affect my Qantas Frequent Flyer account?

Cancelling a Qantas credit card does not affect your Qantas Frequent Flyer account. Qantas Points already in your account will remain there.

Do Qantas Points expire?

Qantas Frequent Flyer points expire if you do not use your account for a period of 18 months. As long as you earn or redeem points at least once every 18 months, your account will remain active and your points valid.

You can check your account activity in your online Activity Statement. Sixty days before expiry, your account will show that you have points due to expire.

How do I get Qantas Points without a credit card?

You can earn Qantas Points without a credit card by flying with Qantas or one of their partner airlines, staying at a Qantas hotel partner, buying fuel, and taking out insurance.

You can find more ways to earn Qantas Points without a credit card in this article.

How do I maximise my earning potential?

Some of the entry level frequent flyer cards put a cap on how many points you can earn per month, so make sure you review that to see if it fits your typical spending habits. Most cards let you earn 1 point per dollar you spend, but you'll be doing well to get that earn rate from a Visa or MasterCard. AmEx cards typically let you earn points at a higher rate. Also, make sure your credit limit is sufficiently big, i.e. if you spend $3,000 per month on your household bills or through your business but you only get a credit limit of $2,000 then there’s $1,000 worth of spending and points that you will miss out on earning.

Your membership status also changes some aspects of your points earning potential. When you first become a member you have Bronze status, then, as you fly more often, can progress through Silver, Gold and Platinum. With higher status you have the chance of earning bonus points when you fly.

How long does it take to collect sign up bonus Qantas Points?

If you apply for a Qantas credit card with promotional bonus points for signing up, these bonus points usually take a little while to get added to your points total, i.e. after you’ve gone through the steps of applying for the credit card, being approved, receiving it, and spending a certain amount each month for several months.

How many Qantas Points do I need for a flight?

Short regional flights can be booked with a few hundred Qantas Points. The number of points required depends on the flight's length and cabin class.

As a guideline:

  • A one-way Economy class flight from Sydney to Melbourne requires 8,000 points plus taxes.
  • A one-way Business class flight from Brisbane to Perth requires 36,000 points plus taxes.
  • A one-way Economy class flight from Brisbane to London via Singapore requires 64,000 points.
  • A one-way First class flight from Melbourne to Hong Kong requires 90,000 points.
  • A return Premium Economy class flight from Sydney to Los Angeles requires 72,000 points.

Some service fees may also be applied.

Is it possible to cancel your Qantas credit card after earning bonus points?

You can cancel your credit card at any time after the bonus points have been credited to your account and there is no outstanding balance owed.

What credit card has the best Qantas Points earn rate?

Typically, the card with the highest earn rate for Qantas Points is the Qantas American Express Ultimate Credit Card, which earns 1.25 Qantas Points per dollar spent on eligible purchases with no cap. The Qantas Premier Titanium Credit Card also has a high earn rate at 1.25 Qantas Points per dollar spent but has a monthly cap on how many points can be earned.

Award flights are not entirely free

When booking an award flight, you still have to pay the Qantas Carrier Charges and any government or airport taxes associated with the flight. For a long-haul flight this can add as much as $700 to the cost of a return journey.

Be aware of caps on the number of points you can earn

Some Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards have points caps or points earning rate thresholds.

Earn a lot of Qantas Points relatively quickly

Many Qantas credit cards offer a large quantity of first purchase bonus points to new cardholders who can meet a reasonable spending target in the first few months after card approval.

Expect annual fees to be higher than average

Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards often have a higher annual fee than cards with no rewards points or complimentary benefits. But there are still some Qantas Frequent Flyer cards with a low or even no annual fee.

If you don't spend enough, the annual fee will negate the card's benefits

It’s not worth paying a high annual fee for a Qantas Frequent Flyer credit card if you won’t spend enough to recoup more than the fee cost by earning points or by making purchases which activate complimentary benefits (e.g. meeting a trip spending target to activate travel insurance).

Interest rates on unpaid balances are typically higher

Frequent flyer credit cards usually have very high interest rates payable on balances not repaid in full on or before the payment due date.

Not all points redemptions represent good value

If you exchange your Qantas Frequent Flyer points for merchandise, gift cards or movie tickets, for example, you’ll probably get a lower value return than you would by using a standard rewards points credit card.

Redeeming award seats can be challenging

Award seats are sometimes scarce because demand exceeds supply on popular routes at peak times.

Typical daily spending can earn enough points to justify the annual fee

If you pick a card that’s suitable for your income and expenditure level, you don’t need to change your spending pattern to earn enough points to more than cover the annual fee. Just putting all your everyday expenses through your card should cover the annual fee in Qantas Points value, if you always redeem your points for flights.

Use points to reduce the cost of flying

Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards are a low-cost method of subsidising both personal and business travel, as long as you avoid incurring interest and penalty fees.

You can get additional benefits on top of earning points

Qantas Frequent flyer credit cards often come with complimentary benefits aimed at travellers. Benefits could include travel insurance, airport lounge access, travel agency credit vouchers, concierge service, priority check-in and free or discounted flights.

Award flights and seat upgrades are usually the best redemption options

The most cost-effective options for redeeming frequent flyer points are award flights and seat upgrades, according to expert frequent flyer points collectors. This results in lots of choice, since Qantas is affiliated with the global airline group OneWorld as well as having around 14 other partner airlines (including Jetstar and QantasLink), giving their frequent flyers access to award flights with a vast array of flight operators. Long-haul flights and Business or First Class seats usually deliver a higher value per Qantas Point than short-haul Economy flights.

But you can redeem your Qantas Points for other rewards if you wish. Visit QantasStore.com.au to browse the options, which include:

  • Consumer merchandise
  • Retail store gift cards
  • Cinema gift cards
  • Other entertainment experience gift cards
  • Travel, accommodation and car hire vouchers
  • Restaurant gift cards
  • Charity donations
  • WISH eGift cards as an automated reward – set and forget

Use a flexible approach when booking award flights

You’ll hear many complaints from people who say it’s almost impossible to redeem their Qantas points for award flights. But this is most likely because they are fixated on flying on the most popular routes at peak demand times, and haven’t planned far enough ahead. The Qantas Frequent Flyer program is a profitable business for the airline, and it needs to keep its frequent flyers happy. So there will always be some award seats available if you are prepared to fly on less popular routes at off-peak times or seasons.

Also note that Qantas long-haul award flights are released 353 days ahead of departure for Gold and Platinum status frequent flyers, and 297 days ahead for lower-status Bronze and Silver members. Seats will be snapped up quite quickly after they are released, so plan your travel well ahead and diarise the release date for your desired award flight to maximise your chances of securing one.

But it’s also true that some award seats are released within a few days, or even 24 hours, of a flight’s departure, possibly because of unexpected low demand, or cash booking cancellations. So if you’re prepared to take a bit of a risk, or need to travel at short notice, it’s always worth checking whether additional award seats have suddenly become available.

Here’s a summary of your best strategy:

  • Book your flight as soon as award seats are released for your Qantas Frequent Flyer status level.
  • Be flexible with dates and times, avoiding school holidays and business travel peak hours.
  • Explore alternative routes. If you live in Sydney or Melbourne, consider flying internationally from Brisbane. If you want to go to Los Angeles, try looking for an award flight to San Francisco, then continue your journey on a US domestic flight. Going to London? Choose a quieter European destination and book an onward flight to the UK.
  • Check seat availability on partner airlines, especially American Airlines.
  • Check for ‘last-minute’ award seat releases.