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American Express

American Express Membership Rewards Gets ANOTHER Partner

American Express Membership Rewards Gets ANOTHER Partner
Anya Kartashova

The number of American Express Membership Rewards airline partners has been rising like delicious dough lately, and the program now has a new transfer partner—Qantas Frequent Flyer.

Membership Rewards turn into Qantas Points with a click of a mouse at a ratio of 1:1, and transfers can be completed in 500-point increments, which is rather unusual. Most transfers occur in increments of at least 1,000 miles.

Additionally, for a limited time, Amex is offering a bonus on transfers to Qantas. For every 500 Membership Rewards points converted, you’ll end up with 600 Qantas Points. In other words, you’ll receive a 20% bonus. The promotion is valid through June 30, and if you have a need for miles in the Qantas Frequent Flyer program, don’t miss out on earning extra before the end of the month.

Are Qantas Points Useful?

Qantas Frequent Flyer is a distance-based program, like many other loyalty programs within oneworld airline alliance. Not all redemption opportunities benefit all travelers equally, but there are some cases in which Qantas Points come in handy.

For example, Qantas has a non-alliance partnership with El Al, an Israeli carrier. El Al has its own frequent-flyer program, Matmid Frequent Flyer Club, to which Membership Rewards can be transferred as well. So, why do we need Qantas Points to book El Al-operated flights? As you might have already guessed, you’ll use fewer points by going through the Qantas Frequent Flyer program.

Let’s see how many miles you can save. A one-way business-class flight from New York City to Tel Aviv using El Al Matmid will set you back at least 2,250 points, which is equal to 112,500 Amex points, plus fuel surcharges of about $150. With Qantas, the same ticket requires 78,000 miles and minimal taxes. On a round-trip ticket, the savings are substantial.

Another reason to redeem Qantas Points over miles in any other oneworld frequent-flyer program is early availability. Qantas releases award seats to members of its own programs 355 days ahead of a scheduled flight. The same award seats can’t be booked through any other program, such as American Airlines AAdvantage or British Airways Executive Club, until 331 days in advance.

As you can see, there’s an advantage to having direct access to Qantas Points, especially if you’re looking to book an aspirational award, such as Qantas first class. Award availability for these seats is extremely rare, and having that much extra time to book a ticket can make or break your vacation.

Other Ways to Earn Qantas Points

Besides American Express Membership Rewards, Qantas Frequent Flyer is also a transfer partner of the following programs: Capital One Venture Miles, Citi ThankYou Points and Marriott Bonvoy. Should you need to top up your account, points earned with all these programs will do the trick.

As an American Express card member, do you value having access to Qantas Points? Why or why not?


[Featured Image: Shutterstock]

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