Christmas is just around the corner, and for many people, that means spending big on presents or booking travel to visit loved ones – so why not use that spending to help unlock a serve of frequent flyer points on a new credit card?
We've rounded up the hottest deals promising big bonuses of Qantas and Virgin Australia Velocity frequent flyer points, with over 900,000 frequent flyer points on the table from these offers alone.
1. Qantas American Express Ultimate Card
Simply apply by January 30 2017 and you'll get 5,000 bonus Qantas Points with your first purchase, a further 95,000 Qantas Points when charging at least $1,500 to the card in the first three months and a final helping of 2,500 Qantas Points after your first spend directly with Qantas.
For every dollar spent, you'll also rein in 3 Qantas Points at restaurants and on Qantas spend; 2 Qantas Points on other travel-related spend and on all overseas charges; 0.5 Qantas Points with utilities, insurers and government bodies; and 1 Qantas Point everywhere else.
2. American Express Platinum Charge Card
Next in line is the signature American Express Platinum Charge Card and its offer of 100,000 Membership Rewards Ascent Premium points for eligible new American Express charge card customers, equal to 100,000 Qantas Points or 100,000 Velocity points when transferred on a 1:1 basis.
The Platinum Charge Card attracts a $1,200 annual fee, and you'll need to spend at least $1,500 on other purchases within the first three months to net your bonus – although there's no rush to convert those points across to your airline of choice.
Every dollar spent on the card (excluding on the annual fee) also delivers three points at most Australian restaurants, two points on travel and overseas spend, 0.5 points with utilities, insurers and government departments, and one point elsewhere.
3. Westpac Altitude Black American Express, MasterCard credit cards
Westpac tempts this December with an offer of 100,000 Qantas Points to new Westpac credit card customers who sign up for the Altitude Black American Express + MasterCard credit card combo, opt for 'Altitude Qantas' rewards and pay an annual fee of $395.
Take note: this isn't Westpac's standard deal of 50,000 bonus Qantas Points – you'll have to search Westpac's website to find and apply for this special 100,000-point offer – but those points can be yours when applying by January 5 2017 and spending at least $5,000 on the account within 90 days of approval.
You'll also pick up 1.5 Qantas Points per dollar spent on the Altitude Black AMEX and also on the Altitude Black MasterCard when abroad, and 0.625 Qantas Points per dollar via the MasterCard within Australia.
4. ANZ Qantas Frequent Flyer Black American Express, Visa credit cards
Look to the ANZ Qantas Frequent Flyer Black American Express + Visa duo for 75,000 Qantas Points when you spend $2,500 on eligible purchases within the first three months, with no annual fee for the first year ($425 thereafter).
Those purchases can be charged to the AMEX, the Visa or a combination of both, with an 'eligible purchase' being one that normally attract frequent flyer points (such as retail spend), rather than other charges like cash advances, which don't.
You can also earn 1.5 Qantas Points per dollar spent when using the ANZ American Express and 0.75 Qantas Points per dollar spent when using the Visa, uncapped.
5. NAB Qantas Rewards Premium credit cards
Over at NAB, applying for a new Qantas Rewards Premium American Express + Visa combo could land you a nice 75,000 Qantas Points when applying by January 2 2017.
You'll pay an annual fee of $250 which covers both cards, pocketing those bonus points after spending at least $1,500 on everyday purchases within the first 90 days using either card or a combination of both.
As you spend, you'll also notch up 1.5 Qantas Points per dollar when using the AMEX and 0.5 Qantas Points per dollar via the Visa, with points capped at $25,000 spent per month.
6. American Express Explorer credit card
For a cool bonus of 75,000 Velocity points, look to the new American Express Explorer credit card and its offer of 100,000 Membership Rewards Gateway points for new AMEX credit card customers, which you can transfer to Velocity on a 4:3 basis.
Just spend at least $1,500 on the card within the first two months and pay an annual fee of $395 and those points are yours. You'll also scoop up a $400 travel credit each year to spend on flights and hotels, which more than offsets that annual charge.
Every dollar spent also accrues the equivalent of 1.5 Velocity points – including on insurance and utility charges which earn fewer points on many other AMEX cards – except on government charges where the points earned per dollar are on-par with 0.375 Velocity points.
7. Citi Prestige Visa Infinite credit card
American Express cards are a great way to earn frequent flyer points, but if you most often shop at places where Visa and MasterCard are preferred, take a look at the Citi Prestige Visa Infinite credit card and its offer of 70,000 Qantas Points.
Priced at $749/year including a $49/year Citibank Qantas rewards fee, these bonus points appear after your first eligible purchase within the first three months – but be sure to choose the direct-earn Qantas rewards option when you sign up, as regular Citibank Rewards points can't be converted into Qantas Points.
Citibank also gives cardholders a groovy one Qantas Point per dollar spent, with no points capping or tiering to contend with.
8. HSBC Platinum Qantas Visa
HSBC makes the top eight this month with an offer of 60,000 Qantas Points on its Platinum Qantas Visa card.
Yours for $199/year, you'll unwrap that bounty after spending at least $3,000 on eligible purchases within the first three months.
Those purchases and all others will also bring you one Qantas Point per dollar spent on the first $2,500 charged per monthly statement period and 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 thereafter, up to a total of 300,000 Qantas Points per year.
9. ANZ Qantas Frequent Flyer Platinum American Express, Visa credit cards
ANZ makes multiple appearances in this month's rankings with the promise of 50,000 Qantas Points on a new Qantas Frequent Flyer Platinum AMEX + Visa combo when you spend $2,500 on eligible purchases within the first three months, and with no annual fee for the first year.
The rules on 'eligible purchases' are the same as for ANZ's Qantas Frequent Flyer Black cards, being for things like retail spend as opposed to cash advances. After the first year, a $295 annual fee applies.
Also mirroring ANZ Black, you'll earn 1.5 Qantas Points per dollar spent when using the ANZ American Express, but a lower 0.5 Qantas Points per dollar spent when using the Visa, with points limited to the first $6,000 of spend per month, per card ($12,000 overall).
10. Westpac Altitude Platinum American Express, Visa credit cards
Another bank with multiple deals this Christmas, Westpac tempts with an offer of 50,000 Qantas Points for new Westpac credit card customers taking out an Altitude Platinum American Express + Visa credit card duo against an annual fee of $150.
Those points will appear in your stocking after spending at least $2,500 within 90 days of card approval, either on the AMEX, the Visa or a combination of both.
Every dollar spent via the AMEX also attracts one Qantas Point, while the Visa dishes out 0.5 Qantas Points on that same spend, with points earn capped at 3,750 Qantas Points per monthly statement period.
11. Citibank Qantas Visa Signature credit card
Citibank's Qantas Visa Signature card pours its own blend of 50,000 Qantas Points into your wine glass this December in return for spending $2,000 or more within the first 90 days and paying an annual fee of $244 in the first year ($444 thereafter).
That total annual charge includes both the base fee and a compulsory $49/year fee to earn Qantas Points which is charged right from year one.
Spending on the card also attracts one Qantas Point per dollar on the first $3,000 every month, 0.5 Qantas Points per dollar on the next $7,000 ($10,000 total spend) and then no further points until a new monthly statement period begins.
12. Bankwest Qantas World MasterCard credit card
While Bankwest's Qantas World MasterCard used to be available by invitation only, it's now open to new applicants with a launch offer of 50,000 Qantas Points after spending $2,500 on eligible purchases within the first three months.
There's also a $270 annual fee to pay – not counted towards the spending requirements of those bonus points – while every (other) dollar spent on the card attracts 0.66 Qantas Points, uncapped and without monthly tiering.
Bankwest World customers also pay no international transaction fees when using this card to shop abroad or online with overseas-based businesses.
13. American Express Velocity Platinum Card
Finally in our rankings but certainly not last, the American Express Velocity Platinum Card and its bonus of 50,000 Velocity points for eligible new AMEX credit card customers who spend at least $1,500 on purchases within the first three months.
The card carries a $349 annual fee, but also comes with a free Virgin Australia domestic return flight every year to a destination of your choosing among a selection of available routes.
Every dollar spent also delivers three Velocity points per dollar at most Aussie restaurants and on Virgin Australia flight bookings; two points per dollar on other travel and overseas spend; 0.5 points per dollar with the usual line-up of utilities, governments and insurers; and one point per dollar everywhere else.