Jetstar Mastercard (Qantas Frequent Flyer, Jetstar Dollars)

Credit Card Review: Jetstar Mastercard (Qantas Frequent Flyer, Jetstar Dollars)

What's Hot

  • Affordable $69 annual fee
  • One of the lowest interest rates on purchases for a points-earning card (14.99% p.a.)

What's Not

  • Earn rate of 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 with 25,000/year cap
  • Additional annual fee to earn Qantas Points

X-Factor

  • Save on flight bookings plus food and beverage purchases with Jetstar

Introduction

The Jetstar Mastercard follows the lead of its own airline's brand in being a basic, no-frills product that's within reach of most people – but one that provides an opportunity to earn Qantas Points for free flights or Qantas business class upgrades, or to earn Jetstar Dollars to save money on your next holiday.

Without premium extras like international travel insurance, this credit card could instead save you money when booking Jetstar flights online or over the phone, or when purchasing drinks and snacks on board Jetstar flights.

Jetstar Mastercard: fast facts

  • Grade/tier: Standard
  • Card type: Mastercard
  • Loyalty program: Qantas Frequent Flyer or Jetstar Dollars
  • Qantas Points earned per $1 spent (Qantas Frequent Flyer option): 0.5, or
  • Jetstar Dollars earned per $1 spent (Jetstar Dollars option): $0.01 ($1 per $100 spent)
  • Points capping: Earn up to 25,000 Qantas Points or $500 Jetstar Dollars per calendar year

Fees, charges and interest: 3/5

  • Annual fee: $69
  • Additional yearly fee if opting for Qantas Points: $30
  • Additional/supplementary cardholder fee: $9
  • Interest rate on purchases: 14.99% p.a.
  • Interest-free days on purchases: Up to 55
  • Interest rate on cash advances: 21.99% p.a.
  • International transaction fee: 3.0%
  • Minimum income requirement: $30,000
  • Minimum credit limit: $2,000

Earning points for free flights: 2.5/5

Without a shiny Gold or Platinum coating, the entry-level Jetstar Mastercard delivers either 0.5 Qantas Points per dollar spent up to 25,000 Qantas Points per year, or $0.01 in Jetstar Dollars per real dollar spent up to $500 Jetstar Dollars per year.

Regardless of which option you choose, you'll earn no further rewards after spending $50,000 on the card in any given year – unlikely a problem for the low-to-moderate spenders that this card targets, but something for higher spenders to be mindful of.

Choose to earn Qantas Points and you'd have enough in the kitty for a one-way Sydney-Melbourne flight with Qantas (8,000 Qantas Points) after spending $16,000 on the card – plus a payment of around $35 when you book – or if using your points to fly with Jetstar instead (6,400 Qantas Points), you could zip between the same cities after spending a lower $12,800 on the card.

Your other option is to earn Jetstar Dollars, in which case you'd have enough of them to book a comparable one-way Sydney-Melbourne flight after $10,000 spent, assuming the fare is priced at an even $100.

That's both the advantage and the disadvantage to the Jetstar Dollars scheme: when the price of paid tickets is low, the Jetstar Dollars you've earned can take you further – but when fare prices increase, you'll need more of them to book your flight.

Airport lounge access, free international travel insurance: 0/5

These features aren't typically included on entry-level credit cards, so it's no surprise to find them absent from the Jetstar Mastercard.

However, when using your Jetstar Mastercard to book flights on jetstar.com or via the Jetstar call centre, the airline's usual 'payment fee' (credit card surcharge) will be waived – and if using the card to purchase food or beverages on board a Jetstar (JQ) flight, you'll save 10% on the purchase total every time!

If you fly Jetstar often, those savings could exceed what you're paying in annual fees, or at least make the fee less 'costly'.

Jetstar Mastercard: the verdict

Priced at $69 per year when earning Jetstar Dollars or $99 per year with Qantas Points, the basic Jetstar Mastercard is simply that: a basic, no-frills credit card that earns points, without other extra like travel insurance and airport lounge access thrown in.

However, it does have some great features which aren't offered by other card issuers, such as a credit card surcharge waiver when booking Jetstar flights and ongoing discounts on inflight purchases, which is great to see from an entry-level card.

An annual points cap of 25,000 Qantas Points is on the lower side compared to other products in the Australian market, although we do appreciate that it's a single annual cap rather than a lower monthly cap.

That's because there are months where you'll spend more (such as when booking a holiday or making large purchases) and other months where you'll spend less – so you won't be 'penalised' in those higher months: earning points on every dollar spent, provided you remain within the total overall yearly cap.

Chris Chamberlin
Australian Business Traveller journalist Chris Chamberlin lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, a great latte, a theatre ticket and a glass of wine!
 

2 Comments

  • Yvan J Drake

    MRYJDrake

    28 Jun, 2017 11:07 am

    Who's this one backed by? 
    No member give thanks

  • Yvan J Drake

    MRYJDrake

    28 Jun, 2017 11:10 am

    OK, backed by MacQuarie.. they're picking up a lot of the White Label market lately, even if it hasn't yet been announced. 

    Interesting to see the "Take off with a Jetstar MasterCard® and get $100 cashback*" promo at the moment too, effectively offering $10k worth of spending's rewards. 
    No member give thanks

  • Serg

    Serg

    28 Jun, 2017 01:21 pm

    IMHO very low-attractive card. And although Platinum sister is more expensive in my opinion it is far better proposition.
    No member give thanks

Guest

26 Sep, 2017 01:16 am

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