Qantas, Emirates Chauffeur Drive Cutbacks

Qantas, Emirates Chauffeur Drive Cutbacks
Qantas and Emirates are cutting back their Chauffeur Drive services.

Emirates and Qantas are both cutting back their complimentary Chauffeur Drive services from next month. These services are currently offered to Business and First Class passengers flying with Emirates on most routes, as well as Qantas Business Class passengers flying to or from London.

No more Emirates Chauffeur Drive on award tickets

From 1 March 2019, Emirates will stop offering complimentary Chauffeur Drive airport transfers to customers that have booked their tickets using frequent flyer points. This includes passengers that booked a frequent flyer redemption ticket using Emirates Skywards miles, Qantas Frequent Flyer points, Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan miles, Korean Air Skypass miles or any other frequent flyer program. Tickets that have been upgraded using Skywards miles will also be ineligible to use the free service.

The good news for those with existing Emirates award bookings is that you can still book your complimentary airport transport until the end of February. Even if you’re travelling after March, existing bookings made before the change takes effect will be honoured.

If you have an upcoming Emirates award flight in Business or First class, simply log in to the “Manage a booking” page on the Emirates website to book your Emirates Chauffeur-drive service.

Qantas Chauffeur Drive becomes even more restrictive

Following numerous cutbacks ever since Qantas first introduced its own Chauffeur Drive service in 2013, Qantas currently only offers this service to premium cabin passengers flying from Australia, New Zealand or Singapore to London.

But from 1 March 2019, Qantas will no longer offer the service to passengers in Singapore or New Zealand. It will now be restricted to Qantas Business and First Class passengers flying on a direct Qantas flight between Sydney, Melbourne or Perth and London. (The flights from Sydney and Melbourne to London have intermediate refuelling stops; you’ll still be eligible for the service as long as you’re not stopping over.)

The Qantas Chauffeur Drive service will continue to be offered to Qantas passengers connecting to/from London that are starting or finishing their journey in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra or Hobart.

From 1 March, Qantas will also reduce the “complimentary mileage band” for travel to/from London Heathrow Airport from 70 miles to 50 miles. This means you’ll now need to pay a surcharge if travelling more than 50 miles to/from Heathrow Airport.

Join the discussion on the Australian Frequent Flyer forum: Emirates to axe chauffeur drive on award tickets


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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]