NAB axes frequent flyer points earn on credit card tax payments

By Chris Chamberlin , March 13 2015
NAB axes frequent flyer points earn on credit card tax payments
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National Australia Bank customers will soon be prevented from earning Qantas or Virgin Australia frequent flyer points when paying the Australian Tax Office, removing a useful but little-known strategy to scoop up a hoard of points on annual tax returns or when reducing university HECS debt.

The clamp-down will apply to all NAB personal Visa, MasterCard and American Express cards.

The NAB will also implement stricter monthly limits on earning credit card frequent flyer points at other outlets.

From May 1, NAB Qantas Rewards and NAB Qantas Rewards Premium cardholders will earn no points after exceeding a $50,000 spend in a single statement period, compared to the current $100,000 ceiling.

The bank’s Virgin Australia-affiliated cards – NAB Velocity Rewards and NAB Velocity Rewards Premium – will have their earning potential slashed by 80% to $20,000 of spend per month, down from that same $100,000 figure.

Australian Business Traveller’s calls and emails to NAB Corporate Communications have gone unreturned, although a ‘team leader’ at the bank’s telephone customer service centre confirmed the shake-up.

NAB’s existing customers are being advised of the changes via a note attached to their credit card statements.

The withdrawal of ATO points aside, the new monthly caps remain beyond the reach of most cardholders – limiting those affected to the minority.

The number of Qantas or Virgin Australia frequent flyer points awarded per dollar spent on all NAB Visa, MasterCard and American Express payments to everyday merchants is also unchanged when spending within the revised monthly thresholds.

Also read: Westpac slashes frequent flyer points on ATO payments

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Disclaimer

Executive Traveller may receive a commission when you apply for these credit cards via our links.

You should seek independent advice and consider your own personal circumstances before applying for any financial product.

Chris Chamberlin

Chris Chamberlin is the Associate Editor of Executive Traveller and lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, a great latte, a theatre ticket and a glass of wine!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 Jan 2013

Total posts 715

Not really a surprise given the removal of points (or slashing to insignificant amounts) for ATO transactions has been an industry wide move for the Australian credit card business. It was a lucrative earner for some while it lasted.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 Nov 2014

Total posts 343

At least Westpac has been a bit generous in allowing earning at half the rate. 

Let's hope Westpac won't follow NAB. 

Malaysia Airlines - Enrich

11 Oct 2012

Total posts 19

I don't know what is happening with NAB, I've been banking with them for years and I have NAB Qantas Platinum cards. Unlike Westpac and ANZ they don't have a "black card" and the only reason why I am still with them is their earn rate for Qantas points is still better than Westpac and ANZ. While this change has little effect on me I'd like to see NAB keeping pace with other card programmes.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

07 Apr 2013

Total posts 146

Thwarted again!  The removal of MASA's, cancellation of all  limo services to and from US recently and now also on some Emirates flights, now this. The ATO points were good for a while at least!  Time to swap cards again.

18 Mar 2015

Total posts 2

Given there's a .42% credit card fee charged for an ATO payment I never quite got the appeal of paying a tax debt with a credit card.  A $420 fee for 10,000 points earned on a $10,000 debt payment takes off quite a bit of gloss.

18 Mar 2015

Total posts 2

Thats a $42.00 fee, not $420.00.

18 Mar 2015

Total posts 2

I note this is for all "NAB personal Visa, MasterCard and American Express cards."

I am wondering if it will apply to NAB's Business Qantas Mastercard too?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Jun 2015

Total posts 11

I've got  NAB Business Qantas Mastercard. I can confrim my ATO spend in June earned QF points and was credtied to my QF FF 1st July. So - still good for Business Cards I guess

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

08 Apr 2015

Total posts 1

Does this cut to the freq flyer earnings on ATO payments take effect on the same date (1st May) as the changes to the monthly points cap?

There was nothing attached to my last statement outlining these changes.


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