points-expiredThis week our members outline strategies to prevent frequent flyer points from expiring, even if you’re an infrequent flyer. Qantas points expire after 18 months of account inactivity and Virgin Australia Velocity points expire after two years. So, as little as one point must be earned or redeemed every 18-24 months to keep the points balance alive.

Qantas Frequent Flyer points can be earned for free by downloading the Qantas toolbar and conducting online searches. Up to 150 points per month can be earned using this method, but just one toolbar search is all it takes to keep your entire points alive for another 18 months!

Some members suggest transferring the imminently-expiring points into an active account. Points can be transferred between family members up to four times per year, with 5,000 points the minimum transfer amount. If there are fewer than 5,000 points in the inactive account, our members recommend transferring points into that account before transferring those points, plus the contents of the account back. But our members warn that transfers do not count as account activity.

A third suggestion is to make a small purchase through the airline’s online mall. Points can be earned for shopping with a wide variety of retailers, including iTunes and eBay.

Airlines don’t always provide warning that your points are about to expire and once gone, they may not be able to be reinstated! The only exception is if you’re lucky enough to be offered a Qantas points reinstatement challenge from Qantas. But by maintaining activity in your account, you can ensure that your points are safe. You can also use an online tool such as Award Wallet to keep track of your accounts. Award Wallet will notify you by email if your points are about to expire.

Join the discussion HERE.

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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]