Qantas considering ‘Points Planes’ flights for Singapore, London, USA

Get ready to tap into your mountain of Qantas Points when the airline returns to international skies from December.

By David Flynn, September 1 2021
Qantas considering ‘Points Planes’ flights for Singapore, London, USA

Qantas will unleash a flood of frequent flyer seats to its most popular overseas destinations when the airline resumes international flying in mid-December, and is considering revisiting its 'Points Plane' model for some routes such as Singapore.

The airline says it will boost the number of Classic Flight Reward seats on international flights by as much as 50%, "providing members with more opportunities to use their points to travel when borders are open."

The move will let long-grounded frequent flyers turn their growing stash of Qantas Points into business class, premium economy and economy seats across popular routes including Singapore, London, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Fiji and Honolulu.

Qantas adopted the same approach at the start of the trans-Tasman bubble in April 2021, and went so far as to make every seat on every flight between Australia and New Zealand available with frequent flyer points at Classic Flight Reward rates during the first three days of the quarantine-free bubble between the two countries.

"Our members have been stockpiling points during Covid for exactly these opportunities and we want to help make it easier to get on one of the first international flights," Qantas Loyalty CEO Olivia Wirth said at the time, and the same logic certainly applies as 2021 draws to a close.

Qantas Points Planes to Singapore and beyond?

Executive Traveller understands the airline is considering a similar Points Plane blitz for several destinations including Singapore, which sees first flights tentatively scheduled for Saturday December 18, 2021 from Sydney and Melbourne, with Brisbane-Singapore following in Sunday December 19 (Perth-Singapore remains further away, in February 2022).

Under the Qantas 'Points Plane' concept, every seat on a specified flight is made available at the lowest Classic Flight Reward rates, instead of setting aside only a limited number of Classic Flight Reward seats and selling the rest at the variable and much higher Any Seat Award rates, which are tied to and reflect actual cash price for each seat.

While Any Seat Award rates can easily be triple the number of points for a Classic Flight Reward, a 'Points Plane' makes every seat on the flight available for the same low rate.

For example, on a flight from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane to Singapore, the Classic Flight Reward rates are just 25,200 points in economy class, 51,300 points in premium economy (currently only available on the Boeing 787-9) and 68,400 points in business class.

Ready for take-off...

As previously reported, Monday December 20, 2021 now marks the week when Qantas expects to return to a select group of international destinations, based on advice from the government over the reopening of Australia's international borders once the national vaccination rate passes the 80% milestone.

"It's obviously up to government exactly how and when our international borders re-open," Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce has cautioned, but says he has shared his plans with the government "and they agree with our broad assumptions, and agree that our plan is reasonable."

However, demand for travel to destinations such as Singapore will also hinge on the prospect of either quarantine-free travel bubbles or 'green lanes' between countries, or a short period of manageable home isolation on their return to Australia, instead of spending 14 days in hotel quarantine for upwards of $3,000.

Also read: Which Qantas vaccination reward should you choose?

David

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

My body is ready.

Hope the Singapore restrictions also lift. No drinking after 10.30pm is a bit heavy handed. And I think it's still 2 people per group max in the hawker centers.

CLK
CLK

02 Sep 2018

Total posts 3

If fully vaccinated all can dine up to 5pax for max of 1.5hours 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Jan 2014

Total posts 317

Only an eternal optimist would be buying a ticket on the BNE flight.

gbrgb

Why ? Qld has only had supposedly 7 total deaths from covid & most of them from Ruby Princess which landed in SYD.

Anna Pala Chukka doesn't control international borders.

05 May 2016

Total posts 631

Points planes are a nice idea, but for them to be value for money you need to secure points seats in both directions unless you're planning on making a one way trip to leave for good.

17 Jun 2020

Total posts 241

The Queensland flights will only be able to be booked by Olympians and NRL.

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

10 Jul 2015

Total posts 11

Any word on what date these 50 % bump in reward seats will come online to book.  Planning an international trip (likely Singapore) as soon as possible!  

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2517

Hi kbuck – we've no word on when these extra reward seats will land, as Qantas is still working through the logistics of the exercise, but if we get word ahead of time, we'll share the details here and via our Twitter and Facebook channels :)

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

22 Nov 2019

Total posts 72

If Qantas could Guarantee!! refund within seven days of all booking made for these propsed flights I would invest in three of four flights but not letting go of $30,000 and waiting 10 weeks to be refunded. Luckily an email to Qantas Exec team usually speeds this refund up, but customers should be guaranteed this

12 Aug 2020

Total posts 2

Only “fully vaccinated passengers”, does that mean we won’t be able to travel with small children? I’m not holding my breath on intl travel being allowed, but a little bit of hope doesn’t hurt. It’d be nice to know what the plan is for small children who are not on the government’s vaccination plan.

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 441

Nobody has even confirmed when it will be possible to arrive in Australia quarantine free, vaccinated or not (other than when the NZ travel bubble resumes).

So far the government hasn't even approved home quarantine, let alone a reduction in the time spent in hotel quarantine, from the existing 14 days.

I wouldn't hold my breath that anything approaching normal travel will resume prior to July 2022.

Does this mean us double vaccinated Brits can visit? Not seen our young grandchildren for 2 years!!!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 444

Hopefully by early 2022!

John have seen returned BNE/LAX/BNE in January 2022 school holidays for $999, so probably not worth even using points & still having to pay taxes & fees.

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

12 Apr 2017

Total posts 168

You are more than welcome!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

22 May 2018

Total posts 40

@TheFreqFlyer

All states apart from Qld and Wa... we will all be in lockdown  until 2030 unless there is a change of govt. I did see on 7 this morning, Gladys saying that they will be opening up @ 80% 

05 Oct 2017

Total posts 441

I know! Good point.

Singapore Airlines - KrisFlyer

12 Apr 2017

Total posts 168

Gladys is the only Premier with any reasonable sense in all this. The other Premiers put their fingers in their ears and go “la la la” and hope they can lock their states up until they get re-elected!

Qantas

03 Mar 2015

Total posts 18

I'm desperate to get back to my parents in the UK. Each time I apply I'm told "Not deemed essential travel" I fear I may not see my Dad again :(

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

22 Nov 2019

Total posts 72

Lucas, you will get back there to see your dad mate. Keep your chin up, it will happen sooner than you think. Best wishes. 

16 Feb 2020

Total posts 3

How do you email the Exec Team at Qantas, I have over $40k awaiting refund for cancelled work trips on my credit card.  Any advice would help.  Cheers

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

16 Mar 2016

Total posts 44

I would think the chance of getting a business class seat on any Qantas flight apart from the special points flights will be about the same as before the pandemic. It seems that for some reason Qantas would rather have their loyal customers with points fly on another airlines aircraft in business than their own which is a shame as it looks like that all Qantas widebody aircraft that resume flying will have their great business class seat.

I would really like Qantas to guarantee a minimum number of seats on every international widebody flight available as a classic award like 1 first class, 2 business class, 2 premium economy and 4 economy on those planes with those classes.

Optimistically I have already booked flights to Paris with QFF points in business for April on Cathay Pacific and am hopeful of getting away in 2022. 

seriously jgb59 ?

Frequent flyer programmes were orignally designed to offload seats that couldn't be sold at a reasonable cost. No airline is going to offer many ff seats in any class at eg. classic award levels on Qantas, in peak season, when they can easily sell them for top dollar. Remember Qantas have already been paid for your ff pts.

I know of 1 person who earns around 2 million Qantas ff pts a year, just by paying company expenses & he never ever flys Qantas except when using ff pts, mainly as Qantas is way too expensive & not that good.


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