There are plenty of ways to spend Qantas frequent flyer points, but when you have a cool 100,000 Qantas Points to burn – such as on offer right now with a new Qantas American Express Ultimate credit card – some approaches let you travel further, more often or in more comfort than others.
Here are just some of the best ways we’ve found to spend that bounty: and remember, because the Qantas Ultimate AMEX also includes a $450 Qantas Travel Credit every year, these ideas are all in addition to the flights you can book using that recurring travel voucher!
As of April 10 2018, the Qantas AMEX Ultimate Card is now offering a sign-up bonus of 55,000 Qantas Points, down from 100,000 points.
1. Score up to 20 business class upgrades
Stretching your newfound points bonus to the max, you could land as many as 20 one-way upgrades from economy to business class: which includes not only 20 flights at the pointy end, but also 20 visits to Qantas’ business class lounges and a higher baggage allowance on every flight, plus priority check-in, security screening, boarding and baggage delivery on every trip.
That’s achieved on short Australian domestic flights such as between Sydney and Melbourne or Brisbane when booked on a flexible economy ticket, where each upgrade costs only 5,000 points: but even on less-expensive fares, upgrading only requires 10,000 points: still getting you 10 bump-ups from your bounty.
However, 10,000 points could instead get you a one-way upgrade from flexible economy to business class on the airline’s longer, cross-country flights, such as between Perth and Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane – while 25,000 points achieves the same upgrade from more affordable tickets.
You could even stretch your points to a return upgrade from economy to business class on Qantas’ flights between the east coast and destinations like Singapore and Hong Kong: particularly beneficial on overnight flights, allowing greater opportunity to sleep.
2. Splurge on first class travel with Emirates
The great thing about frequent flyer points is that they can help you unlock experiences you may not otherwise be able to afford. For most people, flying overseas in first class is a perfect example – but for only 90,000 Qantas Points, you could swan your way to Singapore or Bangkok with Emirates, flying up the very front.
Your journey begins with pre-flight access to the excellent Qantas First Lounges when departing Sydney (to Bangkok) or Melbourne (to Singapore) – perhaps even with a pre-flight treatment at the Aurora day spa – or from Brisbane (to Singapore), the Emirates Lounge awaits and offers direct, private boarding from lounge to aircraft.
On board, private suites with closing doors, and on Airbus A380 flights, inflight showers and a cocktail bar are also available. Complimentary chauffeur-driven transfers start and complete the journey, even for flights booked using frequent flyer points.
AusBT review: Emirates first class, Melbourne-Singapore
As icing on the cake, you’d still have enough Qantas Points remaining for a one-way upgrade from discount economy to business class on short flights like Sydney-Melbourne, or enough points for a return trip upgrade when travelling on flexible fares.
3. Book a business class flight to Los Angeles or Dubai
Being popular routes, securing a business class upgrade to Dubai or LA can be tricky: but if you plan ahead and book quite early, you could jet from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane to either destination for a precise 96,000 Qantas Points in business class, one-way.
To LA, there’s the option of Qantas’ own flights or those operated by American Airlines, while to Dubai, you could fly with Emirates, or also with Qantas from Sydney and Melbourne until mid-March.
This number points won’t be enough to snag a flight back in the same level of luxury, but as you’ll continue earning points as you spend on the card, these could well become your ticket home.
4. Take a return business class trip to Indonesia
One-way tickets have their purpose, but booking a return itinerary gets you home without having to purchase an extra flight: and with 100,000 Qantas Points up your sleeve, that can take you from Sydney to either Jakarta or Denpasar (Bali) and back home again with Qantas, flying at the pointy end.
For the most comfortable journey, look to Jakarta as your destination, because those flights are served by Qantas’ Airbus A330s which offer the airline’s Business Suites – promising a fully-flat bed on the overnight flight home – compared to the domestic-like Boeing 737s which jet to Bali.
AusBT review: Qantas Airbus A330 Business Suite business class
5. Fly round-trip to Hong Kong or Kuala Lumpur
Nobody likes to fly in economy – and with 100,000 Qantas Points to spend, you certainly don’t have to, because a return trip from Sydney or Melbourne to Hong Kong in premium economy clocks in at 90,000 Qantas Points, getting you there and back while still having points to spare.
However, you may decide to fly one way in ‘regular’ economy (ideally on a daytime flight), and the other way in business class (preferably the overnight flight home), which costs the same number of Qantas Points and gets you back home better-rested.
The same economy + business class approach also works with Cathay Pacific to Hong Kong or Malaysia Airlines to Kuala Lumpur from Australia’s east coast, as you’ll part with 35,000 Qantas Points per economy flight and 65,000 Qantas Points for business class: one of each being an even 100,000 Qantas Points.
AusBT review: Malaysia Airlines business class, Kuala Lumpur-Sydney
Still need an extra 100,000 Qantas Points in your account (or more)? Then take a look at these top offers:
- Qantas AMEX Ultimate Card: Apply by April 9 2018 and spend $3,000 on purchases within the first three months to earn 100,000 bonus Qantas Points. You'll also get 1.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent on everyday purchases, Qantas Club lounge access, and more.
- AMEX Qantas Business Rewards Card: Lodge your application by March 29 2018 and charge $3,000 or more worth of business purchases within two months of the approval date for 100,000 bonus Qantas Points. No pre-set spending limit and no supplementary cardholder fees for up to 99 employees.
- AMEX Platinum Business Card: Apply by March 29 and spend $5,000 within three months of the card approval date to get 150,000 bonus Membership Rewards Ascent Premium points, which you can convert into 150,000 Qantas Points at a 1:1 rate.
Receive 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you apply online, are approved and spend $3,000 on your new Card in the first 3 months from the Card approval date.
- Receive 50,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you apply online, are approved and spend $3,000 on your new Card within the first 3 months. This offer is available to new Card Members, as well as Bank-issued American Express companion cardholders
- Start exploring with a $400 Travel Credit every year
- Enjoy two complimentary entries per year to the American Express Lounge, located at Sydney International Airport or Melbourne International Airport
- 0% p.a. on balance transfers for the first 12 months — A one-off credit plan establishment fee of 1% applies
- No cap on earn rate. You can earn up to 2 Membership Rewards points per $1 spent, no matter how much you spend each month
- Transfer your points to a choice of 8 Airline Partner Programs including Virgin Australia and Singapore Airlines
- Spend more and earn more points by getting up to 4 Supplementary Cards for family members at no additional fee
- Travel with peace of mind knowing that you'll also enjoy extensive protection for you and your partner and dependent children when you pay for travel on your American Express Explorer® Credit Card