Qantas is about to make it a lot harder for its Platinum frequent flyers to earn free Gold status to give to a partner or friend.
Platinum high-flyers who earn 2,400 status credits in a single membership year – twice as many as needed to retain Platinum status, and two-thirds of the way towards Platinum One – are able to choose between a bonus 50,000 Qantas Points or free partner Gold status, with the later being a useful gift to one's partner, a family member or friend (there are no restrictions on who can receive this gratis status).
Under the current rules, those status credits can be racked up on not only Qantas and Jetstar but when flying with array of partner airlines including Emirates, Oneworld members and Fiji Airways.
But from March 13, 2018, only status credits earned from Qantas and Jetstar flights will count towards that 2,400 tally.
The tighter qualification rule to reach that 2,400 milestone means that only status credits earned on flights ticketed with Qantas' QF code or Jetstar's JQ, 3K GK and BL flight numbers will be recognised as you ascend the Qantas Frequent Flyer ladder beyond Platinum.
If you take a flight with Oneworld partner airlines such as American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Malaysia Airlines and Qatar Airways, and list your QFF number in the booking, you'll still receive Qantas frequent flyer points – typically at a very modest rate – but any status credits you get will count for nothing beyond the initial threshold to earn (1,400) or keep (1,200) Platinum status.
All status credits earned prior to March 13, 2018 will remain in your tally: the new rule applies only to status credits earned after that date.
The revised rules also mean that bonus status credits – such as those from double status credits promotions, via Qantas’ loyalty bonus or with the ANZ Frequent Flyer Black credit card – won’t count towards your partner Gold goal.
There’s no change to the number of status credits needed to earn or retain Platinum status, or Gold status if qualifying under your own steam.
Platinum members will also have only 90 days to opt-in for partner Gold status after qualifying – ditto the other Platinum benefits like 50,000 bonus Qantas points or complimentary airport parking vouchers, if preferred over the partner Gold membership.