Would Qantas devalue its frequent flyer points?

12 replies

mspcooper

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 09 May 2013

Total posts 344

Difficult times calls for difficult decisions: Would Qantas devalue their points in this time of crisis?

Ourmanin

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

Member since 08 Jun 2018

Total posts 136

Well pretty much all airlines have done so at some time. Any time redemption rates change, almost always for the worse, that is an effective devaluation. I have to say it does mystify me as to why many people see FF points / miles as some form of quasi currency. They aren't. They are controlled in every meaningful way by the issuer (airline). And you can effectively only spend them through the issuer. To the specifics of your question - I suspect they won't directly. But when flights do resume they will want fare paying passengers on planes. Not those on reward tickets. So I would not be surprised if availability was hard to come by.

peteshep

Member since 15 Feb 2013

Total posts 12

They effectively are valued based on the price of a seat they can be used to redeem. Forgetting taxes for the example, if you use 8,000 points to redeem for a MEL-SYD flight costing $250 at the time of redemption, they're 'worth' 3.1c per point. If that flight post-COVID is suddenly only $150 because they need 'bums on seats', the points are only 'worth' 1.9c per point. But this always varies based on route, date, time, etc. Perhaps initially this will "devalue" the points to a degree, until everything rebounds to original pricing. But it doesn't change how far or where you can go for the same number of points

The question will be whether they increase the points needed for particular routes, if that occurred it would cause a "double devaluation" of the points, if they both increase and the cost of fares on those routes decreases as well.

Still, they're worth more for a flight than buying a toaster.

Wilbur Wright

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 20 May 2020

Total posts 1

We were meant to fly on a QFF Classic Reward booking, Emirates Business class to Dublin in April this year, returning in Cathay Business class in May ex the UK, but obviously we cancelled in late February as Covid-19 took hold. For a bit of fun last week, I tried doing a dummy Classic Reward booking for the same flights in March and April next year and came up trumps. However, clearly I did not pursue the booking as there's no way I'll be travelling overseas any time soon.

waratahbay

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 14 Mar 2018

Total posts 6

Good luck trying to redeem QFF points for actual seats, domestic or otherwise. Redemption seats always in limited supply before the pandemic and probably moreso as they resume flying. A hobbled Virgin will provide less incentive for Qantas to play fair with points.

gazza48

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 10 Jun 2016

Total posts 9

I just filled in a QF survey last night and it was about what is important when you can fly again.....one interesting option was 'would you travel if FF points were lowered' ...so I don't think they will be devaluing them but trying to get you to use points by offering lower points options!

Travelwell

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 26 Oct 2017

Total posts 1

History suggests frequent flyers have paid increasingly more with points for the same benefits. Either this will continue or more dollars will be paid to earn those points due to what may be called a "Sanitizing Surcharge" or similar. There's more than one way to skin a cat as they say..... Problem for Qantas is most frequent flyers are fairly astute and such changes are met with vexation. Look out for incremental changes to points as Qantas knows large sweeping changes will not be tolerated in the current climate.

PG44

Member since 28 Feb 2018

Total posts 36

They will want to get people spending points to get the liability off their books.

Q FF is a sophisticated business. and I suspect they will be looking to see how fast demand for flights grows as restrictions ease. Virgin is another unknown.

If they have empty seats, they will encourage people to use points for flights.

In the longer term, i would be more concerned about the impact of the new initiatives they were already starting to launch... Eg frequent shoppers club or whatever its called. Once people start earning points on that, seats will get harder to redeem.


outthere1000

Air Canada - Aeroplan

Member since 28 Feb 2015

Total posts 10

I recently contacted Qantas FF on behalf of a friend who lives in Cyprus, is a Qantas FF member, and is not on the internet (yes, they exist; he's 70). He normally comes to Australia once a year, but with the borders firmly shut it's unlikely he'll be able to come anytime soon (not an Australian). He last had a transaction in his FF account in June last year, which means his points will expire in December unless there is activity in his account. I asked Qantas FF if they intend to cut some slack to overseas FF members, and the response was basically No. Rent a car, stay in a hotel, redeem an award, or buy stuff (really helfpul advice for Cyprus residents, not). Otherwise, too bad, you'll lose your points. I realise this is somewhat OT, as it isn't to do with devaluing points, but your points can't get any more devalued than confiscated entirely.

nickj

Member since 09 Sep 2019

Total posts 2

Outthere1000: Install the Qantas Wellbeing app, and go for a walk, earn 1 point, and you're done for 12 months. Ideally they would install it on their phone, but since they're not on the internet, I'm assuming they probably don't have a smartphone... Maybe you install it on a burner phone for your friend, if they'll give you their login details?

Clancy

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 31 Jan 2016

Total posts 62

Yes, but then again maybe not. FF points are both a liability and an asset depending on how you do your accounting...if they are devalued the reduction in value 'should' be reflected in any financial reporting as a devaluation to the FF scheme. However, as the FF scheme continues to grow and be profitable this probably outweighs any devaluation as a percentage, so I guess the answer to your questions is still 'Yes'...probably.

sharrkey

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

Member since 06 Feb 2014

Total posts 4

Nothing would surprise me

Qantas FF points are a scam anyway unless you are a high status FF

They would much rather have you spend them on pots and pans than a business class redemption !

greg959

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 15 May 2019

Total posts 23

It would be a bit much if the did it again in circumstances where they massively devalued points last year as part of their "revamped" Frequent Flyer Program. Devaluing points would be a pretty good way to piss off loyal customers and undermine their value proposition at a time when they are trying to convince people to fly again. If they are concerned about a glut of points accumulating as a result of this crisis they should look at ways to incentivise reward point use to get people flying again rather than unilaterally screwing members over for a second time in as many years.

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