Over the Christmas / New Year break, Australian Business Traveller will be revisiting some of our most popular articles of 2017. We’re still around to report on any breaking news during this time, otherwise our regular publishing schedule will resume on Monday January 8, 2018.
Qantas gift vouchers – also sometimes called Qantas flight vouchers or Qantas travel vouchers – are a small but smart way to trim your travel costs and earn extra frequent flyer points.
They'll reduce the cost of your flight because Qantas bookings made using a travel voucher even as a part-payment don't attract the usual credit card booking fee.
For example, a Sydney-Singapore business class return flight comes with a $70 booking fee (as do most other international business class fares) – but apply even a $50 Qantas travel voucher and that booking fee is waived, putting a handy $70 back into your pocket or purse.
You can buy a Qantas gift voucher at any time but many business travellers stock up on them in December each year, when Qantas rolls out a regular bonus of earning five frequent flyer points per dollar spent on Qantas flight vouchers. (Similar promotions can pop up during the year, too.)
Buying a handful of $50 vouchers covers you for bookings throughout the next 12 months, with extra points thrown in for good measure.
And don't be fooled by the name: just because it's a gift voucher it doesn't have to be given to somebody else.
You can buy these vouchers for yourself, but you can also change the name of the recipient later on if you want to use your voucher to book travel for somebody else.
Where you can use Qantas flight vouchers
Qantas gift vouchers can be used to book domestic and international Qantas flights, provided the flight departs from Australia.
For example, if you use your frequent flyer points to book a one-way business class trip from Sydney to Hong Kong, you can't use the travel voucher in booking the necessary one-way Qantas flight from Hong Kong back to Sydney.
You can use only one voucher per booking, but that makes sense if you're relying on the voucher simply to waive the booking fees.
How to buy Qantas flight vouchers
Head to the Qantas gift vouchers website and click the Buy button.
You can purchase Qantas flight vouchers in values from $50 to $2,000.
If you buy an high-priced voucher and use this to purchase a fare at a lower price – such as a $1,000 gift voucher against a $300 flight – Qantas will issue you a new voucher valued at the difference In that case, $700).
But if your main aim is to eliminate those pesky credit card booking fees, keep your voucher purchases at the $50 minimum.
You'll also need to indicate how many passengers will fly on the reservation. If you're unsure, it's best to choose 'one passenger' – if two people end up travelling you can always make two separate bookings.
The next step is pretty straightforward; you can enter own name as recipient and change that later on if need be.
You have to choose an image for creating the voucher, and if this is a gift voucher for somebody else you'll want to add a message and click the Preview button to see how it looks...
Hmmmm, not too shabby at all – and I do deserve a holiday!
Scroll down to click Review and Payment – after confirming the details, paying for your Qantas travel voucher with the right credit card is of course another opportunity to earn Qantas points.
The final screen shows the unique reference number for your Qantas gift voucher (blacked out here, so you can't go and book a flight with my voucher!) and its expiry date.
To make a flight booking with your voucher, start by going to the same Qantas gift vouchers website and selecting Redeem instead of Buy.
Note that each voucher expires one year after the date of purchase – so don't forget about it and let that money go to waste!