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Qantas: no shared MAS frequent flyer points or lounges until 2012

By David Flynn     Filed under: qantas, Qantas Frequent Flyer, MAS, Malaysia Airlines, Enrich, Stephanie Tully

Qantas intends to begin frequent flyer point sharing and reciprocal lounge access with Malaysia Airlines ahead of MAS' official entry into oneworld, but it's unlikely to happen this year.

MAS' oneworld membership, which is being sponsored by oneworld founding partner Qantas, is initially expected to take 12-18 months for full compliance.  

"We've said that late next year is the official date, but we will aim to do the frequent flyer agreement earlier" says Stephanie Tully, Qantas' Head of Airline Loyalty. "But there's a lot of work that goes into that; I don't think that it will be 2011."

"Qantas is sponsoring Malaysian into oneworld so we will probably be the first airline to have the agreement with them, but there is still quite a bit of work to be done. I think 12 months is a realistic timeframe for that."

When complete, the arrangement will allow passengers on MAS to earn Qantas Frequent Flyer Points and also have access to MAS lounges according to their class of travel or Qantas Frequent Flyer status.

The membership tiers in Malaysia Airlines' Enrich programs are expected to line up against Qantas and oneworld, with MAS Enrich Silver equalling Qantas Silver and oneworld Ruby; Enrich Gold sitting against Qantas Gold and oneworld Sapphire; and Enrich Platinum matching Qantas Platinum and oneworld Emerald.

In the interim, Virgin Australia will wind down its current point-sharing relationship with MAS as the Australian challenger forges a new alliance with Singapore Airlines.

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About David Flynn

David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

 

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1 on 6/7/11 by am

If MH move into the QF lounges, then will we see a new operator open up something in the current MH space? Although I'd like to see something a bit more exoitic, Virgin and Etihad would likely leap at this opportunity imo. How big is the MH lounge in SYD?

1 on 6/7/11 by David

Could be too soon to make that call – 'sharing' typically just means reciprocal, so MAS could keep their Sydney lounge for example. But, who knows: as Qantas and MAS look at closer ties this might happen, in which case I think there'd be some interesting ways to use the current MH space!

1 on 6/7/11 by am

Oh yes, I'm definitely looking a bit down the road!! But certainly once they're in Oneworld they will do the typical alliance thing and cut costs by moving in with QF like the rest of Oneworld have (and I imagine the QF lounges are way better, though I've never been in the MH one in Sydney)

 

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