When you’re looking to turbocharge your Qantas Frequent Flyer status, there are three little words you need to know: double status credits.
Throughout the year, Qantas offers members of the Qantas Frequent Flyer program an opportunity to earn twice the number of status credits on Qantas flights, both domestic and international.
It’s the fast track to meet the status tier requirements set by the airline and either lock in your existing status and benefits for an additional year, or vault your way up through the ranks: from Bronze to Silver, Silver to Gold, Gold to Platinum or even to Platinum One.
Status credits are essential to unlocking all the perks that come with the higher tiers such as access to complimentary domestic and international lounge access (for Platinums, this includes the international first class lounges of Qantas, Emirates and Oneworld airlines), free seat selection, bonus Qantas Points and being higher on the priority list for upgrades.
(And if you’re not yet a Qantas Frequent Flyer member, there are several quick and easy ways to join for free.)
How often does Qantas offer double status credits?
Qantas never tells anyone in advance when these promotions are coming up: they just arrive as a welcome surprise.
However, while you can’t predict the exact timing without a crystal ball, in the past Qantas has typically launched a double status credits promo in the first quarter of each year; over the past few years, it’s been in February or March.
A second offer is often released in the third quarter of the year, although is often a ‘targeted’ offering in which only selected Qantas Frequent Flyer members are invited via email to participate.
In addition, Qantas has been known to release double status credits offers for specific destinations, with the aim of increasing bookings to that city or country.
In every case, Qantas double status credits promotions are not open for very long – they typically run for just one week, although they can cover flights booked up to a year in advance (you also need to register for the promotion in order to collect those double status credits - once launched, the offer is usually published here).
With little warning and even less time to book, it pays to have a Qantas double status credits strategy in place.
Using Qantas double status credit promos to your advantage
First up, ask yourself these three key questions:
- How many status credits do I currently have?
- What status milestone do I want to reach?
- Is that level of status really going to be useful for me?
The last question is particularly relevant: there’s no sense chasing the lofty goal of Qantas Platinum One if your needs will be met by Platinum, and for many domestic-only flyers who do the odd international trip, Qantas Gold will suffice.
Map out the number of status credits required, or the number of flights you need to do, to get from your current status to the tier you want, taking into account your ability to collect double status credits of course.
Only flights booked within the promotion period qualify for double status credits – if you already hold a Qantas booking when the promotion begins, it will only collect the usual single serve of status credits. In that circumstance, some frequent flyers will cancel and rebook, provided of course there’s no cancellation or rebooking fee and their intended trip is available for the same price.
If you’re mapping out travel for much later in the year, you can consider holding off bookings until a double status credits promotion is released: of course, as the DSC dates are unknown, there’s an element of chance involved.
Is it worth signing up for the Qantas double status credit promo?
Short answer, yes.
Status credits are largely earned only by flying, so if you can reduce the number of flights needed to unlock the prized perks of status, it’s worth it.
To reach or keep Gold or Platinum, you can probably get there with just one international business class return flight – and that might already be on your plans for an upcoming trip.
For example, a return Qantas premium economy trip from Australia to London will normally earn you around 280-300 status credits; under a double status credits promo, this catapults to 560-600 status credits, which is about enough to keep Qantas Gold status on its own (and around 100 status credits shy of earning it for the first time, if you are currently Qantas Silver).
Likewise, under a double status credits promotion, a return Qantas business class flight from Australia to London can pocket 1120-1240 status credits, depending on the type of fare you book (discount, standard or flexible), which puts you in the realm of Qantas Platinum status.
If you’re travelling domestically, a return business class flight from Sydney to Melbourne or Sydney to Brisbane under a double status credits deal will park at least 160 status credits in your account.
Qantas has a handy calculator to help you work out the number of status credits earned per flight, based on your fare type.
Set your status credits goal
Knowing the status credit requirements of each Qantas Frequent Flyer tier will not only give you a goal to work towards but help you work out exactly how many flights are needed.
Qantas Silver: to earn Silver status for the first time, you need 300 status credits, and 250 status credits to keep it if you already have it. On paper, Silver is not an overly useful tier, because the main benefits are just two Qantas Club lounge invitations and use of 'premium' check-in counters. However, everybody has to start somewhere - and it’s easier to keep it once you have it.
Qantas Gold: you need 700 status credits to earn Gold status and 600 status credits to keep it. Gold is often thought of as the 'sweet spot' because it gives you lounge access across Qantas and Oneworld airlines along with Emirates, plus the use of premium security lanes and priority boarding.
Qantas Platinum: you need 1,400 status credits to earn Platinum status and 1,200 status credits to keep Platinum status. This gives you access to Qantas' domestic business class lounges and the international first class lounges of Qantas and Oneworld airlines, along with Emirates.
Qantas Platinum One: Platinum One is the highest level of the Qantas Frequent Flyer program. You need 3,600 status credits to earn or keep Platinum One, of which 2,700 need to be earned on 'Qantas marketed flights'.
Platinum One members can also give free Platinum status to their partner, receive two invitations to the Qantas first class lounge to give to a family member or friend, get free 'fly ahead' access to earlier domestic flights, and have any available seat converted into a points-based 'award seat'. Plus, they tend to get the best attention from Qantas when flights are delayed or cancelled.
Qantas Loyalty Bonus: Take the Qantas Loyalty Bonus into consideration, too. For every 500 status credits earned on eligible Qantas or Jetstar flights, you can choose a Loyalty Bonus of either 8,000 points or 50 status credits. These can be earned up to four times each membership year, and those 50 status credits might be all that's needed to bridge the gap between your DSC haul and your tier target,
Qantas double status credits caveats
While nobody likes reading the fine print, Qantas double status credits offers always come with some conditions and caveat which is detailed in the marketing email and the promotional page.
Eligible flights: these can be either ‘Qantas marketed flights’ or ‘Qantas operated flights’. What’s the difference? ‘Qantas marketed’ means the offer applies to partner airline flights, such as a flight on Emirates or a Oneworld member but with a ticket that carries a QF flight number. On the other hand, ‘Qantas operated’ means the offer is limited exclusively to flights operated by Qantas aircraft.
Where double status credits don’t apply: over recent years it’s become common for Qantas to state that the extra or ‘bonus’ status credits earned from the offer do not count towards the Loyalty Bonus, Platinum or Platinum One Bonus Rewards or the Qantas Tier Accelerator challenge.
Also read: Best Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards