Earning frequent flyer points on your everyday spend is about to become harder for Suncorp and Card Services customers with the earning rates slashed and airline conversion rates reduced on Citigroup’s broader range of credit cards.
Following similar changes seen with Citibank and Virgin Money, this latest round of cuts also applies to cards issued under the CUA, IMB Bank, QT Mutual and Southern Cross Credit Union banners, while Bank of Queensland cardholders aren’t immune from change either.
Hardest hit are Suncorp’s Clear Options Gold cardholders who will earn just 0.25 Qantas Points per dollar spent from May 1 2016, or 1 Suncorp Rewards point per dollar on the first $1,500 of monthly spend and 0.5 Suncorp Rewards points per dollar thereafter, with an annual cap of 65,000 points.
Suncorp Rewards points can currently be converted into Virgin Australia Velocity points or Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles on a 2:1 basis with a minimum transfer of 20,000 points, but that also changes on May 1 to a less impressive 2.5:1 ratio and a higher 25,000-point minimum.
The new rate gives you the equivalent of just 0.4 Velocity/KrisFlyer miles per dollar on spends below $1,500/month and a paltry 0.2 Velocity/KrisFlyer miles on any further transactions made until your next statement, soon rendering it Australia’s worst credit card for earning frequent flyer points.
Suncorp’s Platinum cardholders opting for Qantas rewards will have their current earning rate of 1 Qantas Point per dollar cut in half to 0.5 Qantas Points per dollar, while those enrolled in Suncorp Rewards will also be affected by the upcoming 2.5:1 airline conversion rate.
Frequent flyer cuts for Card Services
Many other banks also outsource their credit card arm to Citi’s own Card Services division including CUA, IMB Bank, QT Mutual and Southern Cross Credit Union, with their cards also going under the knife.
From May 1 2016, all Platinum-grade cards with the issuers above will earn 1 Card Services Rewards point per dollar spent with an annual cap of 100,000 points, down from up to 1.25 Card Services Rewards points per dollar previously.
The conversion rate from Card Services Rewards to Virgin Australia Velocity and Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer is again worsened from 2:1 to 2.5:1 from the same date, which means all affected customers will earn the equivalent of just 0.4 Velocity/KrisFlyer miles per dollar spent.
Bank of Queensland customers – whose cards also come via Citigroup – emerge unscathed with no changes to their everyday Q Rewards earning or frequent flyer conversion rates, but as with all the banks covered in this article, points issued on BPAY transactions will, however, cease from May.
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