TALKING POINT | Ready for a whopper of a number? The frequent flyer schemes of Qantas and Virgin Australia count almost 19 million members between them.
That's almost three-quarters the population of Australia. To be fair, some frequent flyers live overseas and there's also a degree of duplication between each airline's rewards program.
Indeed, many savvy travellers work their way up the frequent flyer food chain to reach Gold or Platinum with both airlines.
And unlike frequent flyer points, which can be hoovered up many ways other than flying – a new credit card can land you an easy 80,000 to 100,000 points – the status credits which dictate the colour of your membership card and the perks which come with it are by and large obtained only through those bum-on-seat hours.
But where's the sweet spot for status? At what stage do the benefits of any given tier hit a peak so that the ascending to the next level on the ladder isn't really worth the effort?
Is it Qantas and Velocity Gold, both of which provide access to business class checkin lines and airport lounges? Or is Platinum – and in the case of Qantas, Platinum One – worth chasing?
And if you've reached whatever you consider that sweet spot to be, what next – do you strategically credit your upcoming flights to another airline's loyalty scheme to enjoy a different serve of benefits?
Share your thoughts with other Australian Business Traveller readers below!