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Upcoming Qantas Frequent Flyer Changes

Upcoming Qantas Frequent Flyer Changes

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Old May 17, 11, 11:57 am
  #76  
 
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As an Aussie living in USA now - I'm amazed at what a "rip off" the Qantas FF programme is compared to US based airlines

YEs, I know, the quality of the product with US airlines is not as good as Qantas. The planes, the lounges, the AVOD etc. Qantas is way ahead.

But maybe a rip off of a FF programme that is the price you Qantas guys pay for such a good product?

I am Premier Executive with United. That's the mid level status equivalent to Gold on Qantas. I've been Prem Exec wih United 5 years running now.
To qualify, I need to earn 50,000 EQMs (Elite Qualifying miles) per calander year. To (re) qualify for Qantas Gold you need to earn 600 status credits a year.

By my calculations I can earn 50,000 EQM a year with United by flying 3 times to Sydney (LAX-SYD-LAX) and once to NY (LAX-JFK-LAX) per year in ANY class of economy.

To earn the same level with Qantas in any class (discount) of economy I would have to fly SYD-LAX-SYC 6 times - and SYD-PER-SYD once.

That is basically twice as much flying needed on Qantas to acheive the same level of Status as on United.

BUT... in the US there are other ways to earn EQM and earn status! For example on my United credit card I get 5000 EQM (about 60 Qantas credits) for spending $35k on my card annually. I do that easily.

I also earn 1 EQM for every $ I spend with United on the card. So if I book a $1500 flight to Sydney, I earn 1500 EQM.

Considering I spend $35k (5000 EQM) on my card and normally about $5k a year on United flights (another 5000 EQM0 that actually means I need only earn 40,000 EQM to hit to Prem Exec Level - or Gold on Qantas.

So - long story short, living in the US I need to fly 40,000 miles to earn mid level elite status. On Qantas you guys need to fly 96,000 miles. 240% more!

I really think you guys get ripped off!

Add to that that being Prem Exec I earn 100% bonus on flight miles (think you guys get 75% now at Gold) I also get "unlimited domestic upgrades" (UDU) on any flights within USA, Hawaii, Mexico, Canada and Central America.

Yep, that's right - if there is an empty seat in First Class, I get it - FREE. No points, no miles, nothing. FREE (of course those with status higher than me get the seats first, then my level)

As a Prem Exec I find my "free" upgrades clear about 70% of the time. Flights to NY, Miami, Seattle and even Mexico!

My point here is not to boast - but more to point out how I feel you guys get ripped off by Qantas. Yes, the product is much better than US airlines. But I guess there is a price?

Interested to hear what you guys think.....
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Old May 17, 11, 12:50 pm
  #77  
 
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Originally Posted by theassassin View Post
I am intrigued to see what the "improved upgrade experience" actually means.
Making it less of a lottery sure would be nice. It sucks putting in for an upgrade and not knowing until basically when you leave whether you'll be in the relative comfort of Y+ or suffering in Y.
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Old May 17, 11, 2:00 pm
  #78  
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Originally Posted by TIMOS View Post
Yep, that's right - if there is an empty seat in First Class, I get it - FREE. No points, no miles, nothing. FREE (of course those with status higher than me get the seats first, then my level)

As a Prem Exec I find my "free" upgrades clear about 70% of the time. Flights to NY, Miami, Seattle and even Mexico!
The US schemes can be a lot better value than QF, no doubt imo, though this aspect is , imo, a negative of the US schemes. The devaluation of the premium product to being a giveaway to those with status leads to low quality in the premium cabins. Since I do purchase premium tickets, I don;t like the US situation of it being hard to change at the v last minute since 1st class is full of freeloaders nor that it becomes a premium economy product with a 1st/business class price tag
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Old May 17, 11, 2:20 pm
  #79  
 
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Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
The US schemes can be a lot better value than QF, no doubt imo, though this aspect is , imo, a negative of the US schemes. The devaluation of the premium product to being a giveaway to those with status leads to low quality in the premium cabins. Since I do purchase premium tickets, I don;t like the US situation of it being hard to change at the v last minute since 1st class is full of freeloaders nor that it becomes a premium economy product with a 1st/business class price tag
Well the quality of US premium cabins has never been great. Ever. Certainly not compared to Asian carriers or even Qantas. So I'm not sure if the Unlimited Complimentary upgrades have changed the quality of service.

The upgrades sometimes don't clear till you are at the airport, so there is always space for last minute changes like yourself.

Not sure I agree with the statement "freeloaders" in 1st class. If a first class seat is going to go out empty, why not give it to an elite who has already shown loyalty to your airline by earning status, and earn some goodwill and future business and revenue by offering a good deed.

I know every time I get a comp upgrade, United earns my business for another year. I am happy to pay extra $ on a flight with United even if AA or Delta or Virgin has a cheaper fare, as I know they have been loyal to me with upgrades

So to me that is a sound business move.
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Old May 17, 11, 2:33 pm
  #80  
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Originally Posted by TIMOS View Post
Well the quality of US premium cabins has never been great. Ever. Certainly not compared to Asian carriers or even Qantas. So I'm not sure if the Unlimited Complimentary upgrades have changed the quality of service.

The upgrades sometimes don't clear till you are at the airport, so there is always space for last minute changes like yourself.

Not sure I agree with the statement "freeloaders" in 1st class. If a first class seat is going to go out empty, why not give it to an elite who has already shown loyalty to your airline by earning status, and earn some goodwill and future business and revenue by offering a good deed.

I know every time I get a comp upgrade, United earns my business for another year. I am happy to pay extra $ on a flight with United even if AA or Delta or Virgin has a cheaper fare, as I know they have been loyal to me with upgrades

So to me that is a sound business move.
At one time US carriers did have good domestic premium products and had very competitive international premium products


If it is being given away just because it is empty, then there is no encouragement to actually purchase , nor any incentive for airline to maintain quality levels.

There are not always spaces for last minute changes; sometimes I get to airport just in time for an earlier flight but by that point the cabin is full of freeloaders and no seats left for paying passengers and I end up having to wait.

I think there are lots of good things about US schemes, but not that

Last edited by Dave Noble; May 17, 11 at 2:39 pm
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Old May 17, 11, 2:55 pm
  #81  
 
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The timing of these Qantas Frequent Flyer changes is very good, with the Air NZ / Virgin deal really annoying a lot of their most loyal customers (myself included)

http://www.ourairnz.co.nz/air-nz-new...ginbubble=true

It's a great opportunity for Qantas to poach the business flyers.

If Qantas matched my current Air NZ status, I would jump ship... literally.
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Old May 17, 11, 3:06 pm
  #82  
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Originally Posted by ruff00 View Post
If Qantas matched my current Air NZ status, I would jump ship... literally.
I really doubt that you would literally be doing it
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Old May 17, 11, 3:24 pm
  #83  
 
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Good point.... I might have to get one of these!
http://martinjetpack.com/
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Old May 17, 11, 3:26 pm
  #84  
 
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Fairfax Articles

Qantas revamps frequent flyer program with new VIP tier

Qantas has unveiled a new super exclusive tier for its loyalty program to entice its most frequent flyers to keep riding the Flying Kangaroo.

It has announced a range of enhancements to its frequent flyer program, including adding telco Optus as a new partner and creating a new Platinum One status, above it current Platinum level.

Also, passengers on Qantas's low-cost subsidiary Jetstar will be able to earn Qantas frequent flyer points for a fee under a revised fare structure.

Advertisement: Story continues below Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said the new level of VIP recognition was designed to entice those who fly a lot to keep their business with the airline, rather than divert travel to other carriers.

"They fly so much that once they get to Platinum we want then to keep on flying so they get to Platinum One," Mr Joyce told reporters in Sydney on Tuesday.

"There is a lot of money in that because, believe it or not, there's a lot of people out there that get to those levels."

Mr Joyce said he was unconcerned with Virgin Australia's plans to poach corporate travellers from Qantas.

.....
Full article at smh.com.au

Qantas, Jetstar court the business traveller

Qantas frequent flyers will be more richly rewarded for their loyalty, while budget offshoot Jetstar has slashed its business class fare as the airlines battle for market share.

Qantas competes head-on with Air New Zealand for the lucrative business market on trans-Tasman routes.

Frequent flyers with gold status will earn 75 per cent more points than other passengers and those with silver status 50 per cent more.

The number of bonus points earned for business class seats will double to 50 per cent more than the number for economy seats.

Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said the changes recognised the "competitive environment" the airline operated in.
.....
After years of neglecting the New Zealand market, the Australian national carrier has taken the fight to Air New Zealand with the introduction of a new fleet of Boeing 737-800s on the Tasman routes, replacing smaller and older 737-400s.

The airline has also kept its business class, which Air New Zealand has dispensed with on its workhorse Airbus A320s.

In the battle for the holiday market Jetstar has cut the base fare for its business class on long-haul flights by $200.

On the Auckland-to-Singapore route, the business base fare, previously StarClass, will be $799, down from $999.

The cheaper fare does not earn frequent flyer points or offer access to the business lounge, which comes with the full fare, but does include all in-flight services.

Booking domestic tickets has also been simplified, with a single base fare, which includes a carry-on baggage allowance of 10 kilograms. With a Wellington-to-Auckland one-way base fare of $69, a passenger's additional checked baggage starts at $8 for 15kg.

For another $25 the flight will also earn frequent flyer points and the ability to choose a seat.
Full article on stuff.co.nz
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Old May 17, 11, 3:28 pm
  #85  
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Originally Posted by ruff00 View Post
The timing of these Qantas Frequent Flyer changes is very good, with the Air NZ / Virgin deal really annoying a lot of their most loyal customers (myself included) ...
Actually, the changes make me more likely to be using my Velocity Gold State and me AirNZ Gold Elite - especially the ability to "bank" a Years GE if re-qualifying with over 2000 SP's.

I'll be looking very closely at the reciprocity they are advertising.
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Old May 17, 11, 3:33 pm
  #86  
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Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
...I don;t like the US situation of it being hard to change at the v last minute since 1st class is full of freeloaders nor that it becomes a premium economy product with a 1st/business class price tag
The UDU situation makes me really reconsider whether it is reasonable to buy an F ticket in the USA. You buy F for the space and ability to make last minute changes - but if the seats are gone you are stuck in the middle of the back row - if you can even get on the flight (due to vol or invol changes). If you know you might be making last minute changes, why pay for F in the first case?

Here the QF system (of not giving away empty seats) makes more sense and is more reliable for those who have paid the big $$$ for the business class product.
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Old May 17, 11, 3:42 pm
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Originally Posted by og View Post
The UDU situation makes me really reconsider whether it is reasonable to buy an F ticket in the USA. You buy F for the space and ability to make last minute changes - but if the seats are gone you are stuck in the middle of the back row - if you can even get on the flight (due to vol or invol changes). If you know you might be making last minute changes, why pay for F in the first case?

Here the QF system (of not giving away empty seats) makes more sense and is more reliable for those who have paid the big $$$ for the business class product.
Ya. If I want to make a change a few days in advance , it tends to be fine, but last minute ( esp at airport changes ) are dismal. A scheme where purchasers of 1st/business class cannot make last minute changes due to upgrades is ridiculous; that QF only upgrades when miles are used or if they have to do an involuntary upgrade, is the 1 bit where QF wins. I would rather have a product that, due to having paid passengers, is likely to have a decent service and can get booked onto without fighting freebie upgrades is where QF wins. The QFF scheme is uber poor elsewhere generally with a few exceptions
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Old May 17, 11, 4:06 pm
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Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
Ya. If I want to make a change a few days in advance , it tends to be fine, but last minute ( esp at airport changes ) are dismal. A scheme where purchasers of 1st/business class cannot make last minute changes due to upgrades is ridiculous; that QF only upgrades when miles are used or if they have to do an involuntary upgrade, is the 1 bit where QF wins. I would rather have a product that, due to having paid passengers, is likely to have a decent service and can get booked onto without fighting freebie upgrades is where QF wins. The QFF scheme is uber poor elsewhere generally with a few exceptions
Then I guess we'll agree to disagree. I like the US system where by as an elite having shown an airline loyalty - I have a good shot up an upgrade, vs. the QF system where seats go out empty just in case someone wants to make a last minute change at the airport.

I guess there is more competition in the US than OZ - Qantas has had the market to itself for so long.
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Old May 17, 11, 4:15 pm
  #89  
 
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Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
No it isn't ; they are getting what they got before; there is no dilution of benefits, just seems to be a sulk that others are getting something . Just that a Gold member gets a higher status bonus doesn't mean that the platinum member has lost something.

Then again... The sky is falling in! The sky is falling in !
Now the P1 group is officially ahead of WP, so the place in the priority queue WP has is no longer true - it's been pushed back one place. There is a dilution of benefits.

I don't care about the points.
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Old May 17, 11, 5:20 pm
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Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
Then again... The sky is falling in! The sky is falling in !


Ah that's better - thanks Dave.

Once again Red Roo thanks for keeping us in the loop and for being involved in the conversation.
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