For many of our members who are avid Qantas Frequent Flyers, June is going to be a busy and somewhat sad month. Come July, the Qantas program is changing the way you earn points and status credits to make it “simpler and fairer” in their words. Along with reduced earnings for flying on partner airlines, the main impact for many members will be felt with the demise of the “marginal” any seat award.
If you’re not familiar with what an any seat award is then you have probably been missing one of the key value offerings of the Qantas Frequent Flyer program. Until June 30, there are two types of flight awards that can be booked, classic and any seat. Classic awards have been around since program inception, allowing you to book a flight using points but no points or status credits are earned on the flight. Essentially they are for seats that Qantas don’t expect to sell normally.
Any seat awards on the other hand are very different, as they were designed to allow the customer to use points rather than cash to buy any seat available on the plane. When first introduced it was very hard to see value. Some flights were going for 7 million Qantas points! That value proposition changed early 2010, when earning points and status credits was introduced for those awards.
Melbourne to Alice Springs via Sydney return 48,000 points, $379 and 240 SC earned.
It was not long before Any Seat Awards became the preferred method of getting those extra status credits to help a member retain or attain a new status level. With their success growing, it became evident to Qantas that perhaps they had been too generous. Pricing was increased and the ability to book them was removed from the internet, requiring a phone call instead (our members have published a guide on how to book these special fares here). That did not deter our members…
Melbourne-London 192,000 points and $783 in first class.
Managed to get my favourite trans-tasman run one last time! Boy did they jack up the price. It used to go at 49k flat, now it’s 69k! Townsville-Brisbane-Sydney-Wellington 36,000 points and $301, 180 SC
The announcement in March of the demise of the any seat award was not much of a shock to many. Thankfully some notice was given, there are still just over 4 weeks left to make bookings if you’re lucky to have points available to spend. If you would like to know what the best options are, or perhaps just ask a question, why not join the discussion HERE.