Westpac BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum Visa (Qantas Business Rewards)

Review: Westpac BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum Visa (Qantas Business Rewards)

What's Hot

  • Earn uncapped Qantas Points
  • Free travel and business insurances included
  • Share points with employees or clients, or keep them for yourself

What's Not

  • $150 annual fee applies per card, rather than per account

X-Factor

  • The only credit card in Australia promising Qantas Business Rewards points

Introduction

As the only credit card in Australia to earn points in the Qantas Business Rewards program, Westpac's BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum Visa allows businesses – rather than individuals – to accrue points in return for making everyday purchases, which can then be transferred to the business owner, employees or clients as desired.

There's also no limit to the number of points that can be earned, so whether your business spends $1,000 or $1,000,000 every month, you can earn points on the lot by paying for your regular expenses using the BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum card.

Westpac BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum Visa credit card: fast facts

  • Grade/tier: Platinum
  • Card type: Visa
  • Loyalty program: Qantas Business Rewards
  • Qantas Points earned per A$1 spent (most purchases): 0.666
  • Qantas Points earned per A$1 spent (government payments, including ATO): 0.333
  • Qantas Business Rewards conversion: QBR points can be converted into personal Qantas Frequent Flyer points at a 1:1 rate
  • Points capping/tiering: None

BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum: fees, charges and interest

  • Annual fee: $150
  • Additional/supplementary cardholder fee: $150 per card (up to 9)
  • Interest rate on purchases: 18.99% p.a.
  • Interest-free days on purchases: Up to 45
  • Interest rate on cash advances: 18.99% p.a.
  • International transaction fee: 3.0%
  • Minimum income requirement: No defined minimum
  • Minimum credit limit: $2,000 per master business account, $1,000 per individual business card

Earning points for free flights: 3.5/5

New customers that apply by July 31 2017 can pocket a cool 40,000 bonus Qantas Points in the company's Qantas Business Rewards account after the card is first-used to make an 'eligible purchase' – generally a transaction that normally earns points such as a retail purchase rather than a cash advance.

The business will also earn one Qantas Point for every $1.50 spent on the account (0.666 points per $1), except on government payments where 0.5 Qantas Points are awarded per $1.50 spent (0.333/$1). This includes payments to the Australian Taxation Office, among other government departments.

At those rates, your business would earn enough points for a near-free, one-way economy flight from Sydney to Melbourne in return for every $12,000 spent on regular purchases or $24,000 on government payments.

Again, points are earned in the business' Qantas Business Rewards account – rather than directly credited into the business owner's personal Qantas Frequent Flyer account – but can be converted from QBR points into Qantas Frequent Flyer points instantaneously at a 1:1 rate.

(If the business isn't already a Qantas Business Rewards member, the usual QBR joining fee of $89.50 is also waived for Westpac BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum cardholders.)

The business owner may choose to retain all points earned for themselves, could transfer those points to employees or clients as a goodwill gesture, or could use them towards booking flights or securing upgrades on work-related trips.

Just be sure to discuss any tax implications that may arise with your accountant or tax advisor, particularly regarding fringe benefits tax (FBT) obligations if points are given to employees as a gift for their personal use, rather than to book work-related flights when travelling on business.

Airport lounge access: 0/5

Access to airport lounges isn't a perk included with this card, nor are bonus points awarded when using the card to purchase Qantas Club memberships.

General business benefits: 3/5

Even though a business will be assigned one master credit limit covering the entire account, individual credit limits can be set on a per-card basis where multiple cards are issued under the one account, allowing the business to impose spending limits and minimise its exposure if cards are misused or maxed-out.

Joint and several liability also holds business owners and directors liable for all charges made on the account, which has advantages over personal liability business cards which lump the responsibility onto one individual.

As with many business credit cards, transactions can also be exported from Westpac's systems for importing into MYOB and BAS, and being a Visa Platinum card, Westpac's telephone concierge service can assist with basic booking requests and general enquiries.

Complimentary travel insurance and other business protections: 4.5/5

Use your BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum card to book a return overseas ticket before leaving Australia and you may be covered by complimentary international travel insurance on trips of three months or less.

Interstate flight inconvenience insurance is also at-hand to cover specified flight delays, loss or damage to personal items and more when travelling interstate within Australia on journeys of 14 days or less, plus transit accident insurance providing cover against accidental death or injury when riding as a passenger in a plane, bus, train or ferry.

Also thrown in: purchase security insurance, extended warranty insurance (up to three months on business items and 12 months on personal items) and access to a guaranteed pricing scheme.

Exclusively for Westpac's business cards, there's unauthorised transaction insurance of up to $20,000 per cardholder and $150,000 per business card account against unauthorised transactions made by cardholders in a 12-month period, and business inconvenience insurance of up to $10,000/year against invasion of premises and $10,500 for eligible recruitment expenses.

Westpac BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum Visa credit card: the verdict

With uncapped frequent flyer points, a lower interest rate than many rewards cards if you choose to carry a balance from month to month and customisable credit limits for each card on the one account, Westpac's BusinessChoice Rewards Platinum Visa could be a good fit for business owners both small and large.

However, slightly larger businesses will find all the annual cardholder fees adding up quickly – as you'd be paying $1,500 per year should 10 people (including the business owner) hold a BusinessChoice Rewards card, as a $150 annual fee applies not only to the account, but also for each additional card issued to employees.

For the same price, you could instead have up to 100 American Express Business Platinum cards on the one business account, with perks like airport lounge access included for all, plus the ability to convert points across to 10 airline partners including Qantas, Virgin Australia and Singapore Airlines.

As such, Westpac's card may be the better fit if you regularly spend in places where AMEX isn't accepted or attracts a surcharge to earn a reasonable number of Qantas Points on your monthly business spend without limitations, although if you find no issue in using AMEX or can adjust your spending habits, you can earn even more points per dollar spent.

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!
 

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24 Nov, 2017 04:52 pm

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