Qantas Frequent Flyer members can no longer earn or redeem points on Air Niugini flights. The change quietly came into effect on 6 August 2020.
A notice on the Qantas website states:
Effective on and from 6 August 2020, Qantas Frequent Flyer members can no longer earn Qantas Points or use points for Classic Flight Rewards on Air Niugini marketed flights (flights with a PX flight number).
Bizarrely, Qantas Frequent Flyer has not actively informed its members of the change and, at the time of publication, no other Australian media outlets have reported on this. The information was buried within the Qantas website.
Air Niugini flies from Brisbane and Cairns to Port Moresby, and operates a range of other domestic and international routes from Papua New Guinea. In normal times, it would also operate Sydney-Port Moresby flights.
It was previously possible to redeem Qantas Frequent Flyer points to book Classic Flight Reward seats on Air Niugini flights. This was a unique proposition as Air Niugini is not part of an alliance and has few other partner airlines. From 2019, it was even possible to book Air Niugini award flights on the Qantas website.
Qantas Frequent Flyer members could also previously earn points (but not status credits) when booking Air Niugini flights with a “PX” flight number.
Qantas says that you can still redeem Qantas points for Points Plus Pay flights on Air Niugini with a “QF” flight number. However, Qantas does not appear to be currently offering codeshares on any Air Niugini routes – making this is possible only in theory, and not in practice.
In normal times, Qantas also flies from Brisbane and Cairns to Port Moresby using its own aircraft. You can continue to earn and redeem Qantas points on Qantas-operated flights to Papua New Guinea, which are currently scheduled to resume on 28 March 2021 (although this is subject to change).