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I think it is fair to assume they pay about the same rate as they pay any other program partner for their cash-equivalent rewards such as gift vouchers. So assume they buy their $100 Myer (or any retailer) vouchers for a 5% to 10% discount.
So a $100 Myer voucher from Amex Membership Rewards costs 15,000 points. Assuming Amex pay Myer $95 for the voucher, that's 0.633 cents per Amex MR point. I think it is fair to assume they will will be paying a similar amount for QF FF points transfers.
That's .02 cents per point. So that would mean a 80K FF flight to LAX pays Qantas $16,000 from the card provider. That's more revenue then a discounted cash flight so Qantas should welcome FF card converters with open arms.
As I understand it, all participants (or partners) of QFF program - whether they are banks, hotels, credit card providers, car hire companies etc - have to enter into an agreement with Qantas to pay Qantas so much per award point (so many cents in a dollar). This amount varies from partner to partner, depending on their bargaining position. Qantas does not allow the transfer of points for nothing. The point is that Qantas receives money from the partners but in turn it does not have to provide the service (ie FF seats) to the users (ie us). This is why when Ansett collapsed, Westpac claimed that it already paid Ansett for the provision of the FF seats so it was not liable to the FF members as such. It would be nice if the regulating authority, or the partners themselves, can somehow monitor how much money Qantas receives compared to how many actual FF seats actually offered. It is money for jams for Qantas.