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Lounge access restricted for Qantas Platinum Frequent Flyers

By John Walton     Filed under: qantas, frequent flyer, Qantas Frequent Flyer, Platinum, lounges, Melbourne airport, Sydney Airport, Qantas Lounge, Qantas Next-Gen Check-in, Qantas Business Lounge, Qantas First Lounge, SYD, Mel, Get the Points

Qantas' most valuable Frequent Flyers – those with top-tier Platinum status – only have a few weeks left to enjoy  Qantas lounges regardless of which airline they're flying with – or even when they're not flying at all!

The delightful 'Anytime Access' perk for Platinum cardholders ends on January 31st. From February 1st, even Platinum Frequent Flyers will have to be ticketed for travel with Qantas or a OneWorld partner airline to get into a Qantas domestic or international lounge.

(Passengers on the low-cost Jetstar, Jetstar Asia and Valuair airlines can also escape into the lounge before their flight.)

Qantas Platinums have long appreciated this key benefit, either to while away the pre-flight hours in Qantas' international first class lounge despite flying with a competitor or even to grab some breakfast or lunch when seeing friends and relatives off at the domestic  airport.

The loss of 'Anytime Access' is part of a wider set of changes rolled out alongside Qantas' Next Generation Check-in program, which also sees Qantas Silver Frequent Flyers lose priority check-in.

While Platinums are bemoaning the tightened rules, these bring Qantas in line with most other international airlines (including its OneWorld partners).

It's a particular blow to those who need to travel to destinations not served by the oneworld airline alliance, which is the smallest of the three alliances and serves the fewest destinations.

Business travellers required by their company to pick the best available fare regardless of airline affiliation will also be frustrated by the move.

Platinum members will still receive upgrade priority over Gold and Silver Frequent Flyers, although the Platinum additional luggage allowance has changed to a single bag with a total of 32 kg.

What do you think about the changes? If you're a Platinum, how often have you used  Anytime Access – and will this affect your choice of airline bookings in the future? Let us know in the comments below.


About John Walton

Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.


Have something to say? Post a comment now!

1 on 11/1/11 by wjhu

The statement that "these bring Qantas in line with most other international airlines (including its OneWorld partners)" is dubious at best; in fact both BA and CX offer this facility to their "emerald" members.  AA offers it to even their paying Admirals Club members (though security restrictions reduce the usefulness of this).

2 on 24/1/11 by Rick08

Well, I have 2 employees at Gold status, 3 at Silver and I am Platinum for a number of years ... no point to go for Platinum anymore, I accept Virgin's match and move my business to other airlines. My overseas flights I now book with Cathay Pacific, at least better service nicer attendents and often upgrades, very kind and helpful and not close to retirement age or gay. Even their First Class Lounges, Chandon Moet, Johnny Walker GOLD (Seaview, BLACK and self service at Qantas), Table service a la carte ... why would you want to fly Qantas?

I am so disappointed about them, no upgrades the last 200 flights, stuff ups on mass and when you press the button for service be prepared to wait for over 30 minutes on average (2 Minutes max with all other airlines). Qantas was top once and I was proud to support them but now they are closer to the Russian Aeroflot..

At least I have a choice to take my business elsware where they match my status.

I encourage everybody to tell Qantas where they can go with their platinum Status, take your business elsewhere!

1 on 5/7/12 by Nick

"not close to retirement age or gay."

I'm guessing you were out to offend quite a lot of people making that comment?

2 on 19/6/15 by david2202

Are you serious? What world are you in that you can make those comments "retirement or gay" . Virgin are welcome to you. As a 20 year QFF Plat member Im glad you're going 

1 on 19/6/15 by Rick08

Very interesting someone commenting over 4 years later with a being "politically correct" attitute. Do not interpret me wrong because I have many very close and good gay friends but they still represent less than 4% of the population. And the issue is that I do not need to see two Qantas Stewards kissing (in their workplace) on a plane or being told the service button is for emergency only after ignoring it for over 30 minutes.

By the way I am still Qantas member since 1989 and still am Virgin member. By the way, my concerns were well appreciated by QFF top management at a function I attended.

So what planet are you living on?


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