Qantas will begin codesharing on selected Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon flights from October, allowing Qantas Frequent Flyer members to earn a full serve of Qantas Points and status credits on those journeys.
While Cathay Pacific is already a Oneworld alliance partner to Qantas, Qantas Frequent Flyer members currently pocket points and status credits at vastly reduced 'partner' rates, and in some cases no points at all, when taking Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon flights.
However, by booking one of the eligible Cathay flights under its Qantas codeshare QF flight number, those points and status credits earning rates rocket up to the same amount as on board a red-tailed Qantas aircraft.
Qantas codeshares on these Cathay flights...
Within Australia the partnership is limited to Cathay Pacific's flights from Perth and Cairns to Hong Kong – Cathay's other routes such Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide will not carry a QF flight number, and so travellers can earn Qantas Points and status credits only at the current low rates.
Beyond Hong Kong, Qantas codeshares will be available on Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon flights to Bangalore, Calcutta, Chennai, Colombo, Danang, Delhi, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Mumbai and Yangon.
All of those can be booked in connection with a Qantas-operated or Qantas/Cathay codeshare flight to Hong Kong, with bookings available for sale from October 22 for travel from October 28.
Cathay codeshares on these Qantas flights...
Cathay Pacific will in turn codeshare on 13 of Qantas' domestic routes, allowing its own Marco Polo Club members to earn more Club Points on those flights.
Those routes include flights between Sydney and Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Cairns and Alice Springs; also between Melbourne and Brisbane, Canberra, Adelaide, Hobart and Cairns; plus between Brisbane and Cairns and Townsville; and on flights between Darwin and Perth.
How the fares compare: Qantas (QF) vs Cathay Pacific (CX)
Let's say you're booking onto the longest flight of the bunch, from Perth to Hong Kong aboard Cathay Pacific.
Reserve that flight under the Cathay Pacific CX flight number, and you can currently earn points and status credits as the following rates as a Qantas Frequent Flyer member, per one-way flight:
- Business class (J, C, D, I fares): 4,700 Qantas Points + 120 status credits
- Premium economy (W, R, E fares): 4,125 Qantas Points + 60 status credits
- Flexible economy (Y fares): 3,750 Qantas Points + 60 status credits
- Economy (B, H, K, L, M, V fares): 1,875 Qantas Points + 30 status credits
- Discount economy (S, N, Q, O and other fares): No Qantas Points or status credits awarded
Those rates will continue from October for those who carry on booking directly with Cathay Pacific on the CX flight number, but if you start booking those tickets via Qantas with a QF code, here's what you'll be able to earn instead:
- Flexible business class (J, C fares): 8,750 Qantas Points + 135 status credits
- Business class (D fares): 8,125 Qantas Points + 125 status credits
- Discount business class (I fares): 7,500 Qantas Points + 120 status credits
- Flexible premium economy (W fares): 6,900 Qantas Points + 70 status credits
- Premium economy (R fares): 6,250 Qantas Points + 65 status credits
- Discount premium economy (T fares): 5,000 Qantas Points + 60 status credits
- Flexible economy (Y, B, H fares): 5,000 Qantas Points + 60 status credits
- Economy (G, K, L, M, S, V fares): 3,750 Qantas Points + 40 status credits
- Discount economy (E, N, O, Q fares): 2,500 Qantas Points + 30 status credits
Across all fare types, you'd earn more points when booking a Qantas QF flight number than when booking a Cathay Pacific CX flight, and in most cases, will earn status credits at higher rates, too – especially when stuck in economy, where Qantas awards these on all paid fare types, while Cathay Pacific offers them only on higher-priced tickets.
Similar gains apply across Qantas' broader codeshare network with Cathay Pacific, and although Qantas Gold and Platinum frequent flyers can already access lounges when flying Cathay Pacific, booking a QF codeshare flight opens the door for Qantas Club members to access Qantas-operated lounges (where available) when travelling on the same – a perk not available with a CX flight number on your ticket.
The ability to upgrade to premium economy and business class using Qantas Points aboard Cathay Pacific flights is not being introduced as part of this codeshare deal, including when travelling on a QF flight number.