A guide to Qantas Frequent Flyer tiers

A quick overview of Qantas Frequent Flyer tiers, their perks and how you can best use them, written for the Asian audience.

Qantas Frequent Flyer has five official tiers: Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum and Platinum One.

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Qantas Frequent Flyer tiers

This is similar to many other oneworld airlines, where there is an entry level tier and three additional tiers to mirror the oneworld Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald tiers. The only different tier is the Platinum One tier, which is an elite tier for only the most loyal Qantas flier.

To climb through the ranks, you will need to accumulate what Qantas calls ‘status credits’, which can only be earned through flying. Status credits are a secondary points system on top of Qantas Points, to mark how much have you flown. You can’t use them for anything (you can’t redeem anything using status credits), but you can certainly get very good perks out of them.

This guide is written for an Asian audience, specifically those living in Singapore. Some other points may also be relevant but I’ve largely omitted anything that’s Australia-centric, given that the information can be found on the Qantas website.

You can also click on the following links to jump directly to the sections you want:

Qantas Frequent Flyer Bronze

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Qantas Frequent Flyer bronze

This is the entry level that everyone joins at. One thing to note – there’s officially a fee to join QFF if you live in Australia or New Zealand, but according to many sources this is regularly waived during promotions, whether through a credit card sign up, or through time-limited offers.

If you are live anywhere else in the world, congratulations, your membership is free and you can start earning points.

There pretty much isn’t much perk to being a member, except the ability to start earning points and status credits, and using them for redemptions.

Qantas Frequent Flyer Silver

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Qantas Frequent Flyer Silver e-Card

Qantas Frequent Flyer silver is the entry level premium tier, equivalent to oneworld Ruby.

How to get it: To get Silver, you will need to earn 300 status credits in a single year. That’s equivalent to five return flights between Singapore and Melbourne or Sydney in economy (saver fares), or 1.5 business class flights between Singapore and Melbourne. If you travel only on Jetstar, that’s 15 return trips between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, provided you add on the Starter Plus bundle all the time.

If you already hold a Silver, it takes only 250 status credit to renew – that’s one return business class flight from Singapore to Melbourne or Sydney, or 12.5 return trips between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur on Jetstar with the Starter Plus bundle.

Also remember you will need to take at least four eligible Qantas or Jetstar flights in a year. For Jetstar services, it has to be with a bundle that allows you to earn points and status credits to count as an eligible flight. This is a minor requirement if you ask me especially if you live in Singapore, it’s not difficult to go on two return trips with Jetstar.

More points: QFF Silver gives you 50% more Qantas Points every time you fly with Qantas or Jetstar (with an eligible fare), as well as 25% more points when flying American Airlines. Note that this bonus does not extend to points earned from flying with other oneworld or partner airlines.

Additional baggage allowance: At Silver, you are entitled to an additional 12kg on Qantas international flights on top of what you are entitled to in your class of travel.

If you are travelling to or from the U.S., you will get an additional piece if you are travelling economy or premium economy. Unfortunately you won’t get any additional allowance if you are flying business class or first to the U.S.

With Emirates, you will also receive an additional 12kg of checked allowance.

There are no additional baggage allowance on Jetstar flights, even if you have bought a bundle or checked-in bags.

Priority check-in: You can check in at the business class counters regardless of any class you are travelling in, when you travel with any oneworld carriers and Emirates. This is a good perk given that the economy class counters can stretch pretty long at times.

One-time use lounge pass: While Silver doesn’t give you automatic access, it does unlock a complimentary lounge invite good for a one-time use when you travel on Qantas or Jetstar. Good for use at the Singapore or Hong Kong Qantas lounge.

Qantas Frequent Flyer Gold

Gold is where the benefits get serious. This is where you will reap more returns for the investment you made in flying with Qantas and partner airlines, such as lounge access, priority check-in and boarding, as well as more points.

How to get it: You will need to earn 700 status credits in a single membership year to achieve Gold. That’s equivalent to 3.5 return business class flights between Singapore and Melbourne or Sydney, or 2.5 return trips to London from Singapore in business class. In economy class, you will need to shuttle between Singapore and Melbourne or Sydney 12 times. If you fly Jetstar from Singapore, that’s 14 return trips from Singapore to Taipei with the Starter Plus bundle, or 8 return trips with the Starter Max bundle.

If you were already holding Gold or higher tier in the previous year, you only need 600 to keep your Gold.

Note that the four Qantas or Jetstar flights requirement applies.

More points: You will get a 75% boost on the number of points you get on Qantas and Jetstar flights. If you are flying the cheapest economy class ticket from Singapore to Sydney, instead of the base 2,900 points, you will get 4,550 points instead.

With American Airlines, you will also get a 75% boost in the number of points you receive.

Additional baggage allowance, Priority bags: When travelling internationally on Qantas-marketed and operated flights, you will receive 16kg over the base entitlement for your class of travel. Of course, your bags will also be tagged priority even if you are travelling in economy or premium economy.

If you are travelling to and from the US, you will also receive more. In economy and premium economy, you will get up to 3 pieces of baggage allowance, each piece up to 32kg. In business and first class, you will get up to 4 pieces of 32kg each.

On most oneworld airlines, you will also receive additional baggage allowances, which will defer from airline to airline. As a rule of thumb, you either get an additional 15kg or an additional bag.

As again, there’s no extra baggage for Jetstar flights.

Lounge access: you will get complimentary access to Qantas International Business lounges around the world, as well as oneworld partner business class lounges when travelling on a oneworld flight in any class. You may bring one guest with you if he or she is travelling with you on the same flight.

However, if you are travelling domestically within Australia, you will only get access to Qantas Club lounges, and not the domestic business lounges.

One perk unique to Qantas Frequent Flyer when it comes to lounge access is that when you are travelling with any Jetstar airlines (JQ, 3K, BL or GK), Emirates or China Eastern, you can also access the Qantas lounge in Singapore or Hong Kong. Again, you can bring one guest if they are travelling with you.

You may also use any Emirates business lounge when travelling on Emirates or Qantas, and also China Eastern Lounges in China when travelling with China Eastern or Qantas.

Note that the above partner lounge benefit is unique to Qantas Frequent Flyer. If you are holding oneworld Sapphire status with another airline and flying on Jetstar, Emirates or China Eastern, you won’t be able to use Qantas lounges under oneworld rules.

Qantas Frequent Flyer Platinum

If you are a serious frequent flyer with a lot of travel on oneworld airlines, this is a tier you are looking at. Of course, on top of the existing perks you get with at the Gold level, you will get even more.

How to get it: You will need to clock 1,400 status credits to get Platinum. That’s six return business class trips between Singapore and Australia, or 4.5 return business trips from Singapore to London.

If you are existing Platinum member, you will only need 1,200 (which is still a fair bit). On Jetstar, that’s a glorious 70 return trips between Singapore and KL with Starter Plus bundles. That’s easily S$10,000.

Again, you will need to have four eligible Qantas or Jetstar flights in a single year, but that should be very easy at this stage.

Even more points: You will receive 100% bonus points on your Qantas, Jetstar and American Airlines flights.

Additional baggage allowance: When travelling internationally on Qantas-marketed flights (any flight with a QF code), you will receive 20kg over the base entitlement for your class of travel.

If you are travelling to and from the US, you will also receive more. In economy and premium economy, you will get up to 3 pieces of baggage allowance, each piece up to 32kg. In business and first class, you will get up to 4 pieces of 32kg each.

On most oneworld airlines, you will also receive additional baggage allowances, which will defer from airline to airline. As a rule of thumb, you either get an additional 20kg or an additional bag.

As again, if you are travelling with Jetstar, you don’t get any extra baggage allowance.

First Class Lounge access: you will get complimentary access to Qantas first class lounges around the world, as well as oneworld partner first class lounges when travelling on a oneworld flight in any class. You may bring one guest with you if he or she is travelling with you on the same flight.

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Sydney International First Lounge

If you are travelling domestically within Australia, you will also get access to the Qantas domestic business lounges (in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra), which are supposed to be better than the Qantas Club lounges. You can also bring up to two guests with you.

Note that this is consistent with the admission rules for all oneworld frequent flyer members – only Emerald members (i.e. the topmost tier) will get access to Qantas domestic business lounges. Sapphire members travelling domestically in Australia will only get access to the Qantas Club lounges.

One other perk is that you will get access after your flight as well, which isn’t available to Gold members.

You will also get access to Emirates and China Eastern first class lounges when travelling with them, and you can bring one guest along as well. You can also access the first class lounge when travelling internationally with Jetstar, and this is a big perk when the Singapore First Class lounge opens later in 2019.

Qantas Frequent Flyer Platinum One

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The Holy Grail: Qantas Frequent Flyer Platinum One

This is pretty close to the holy grail of Frequent Flyer – Platinum One. Qantas is one of the few frequent flyer programmes that has a tier above the oneworld Emerald tier, and in the Qantas world this is the Platinum One. With the oneworld alliance, Platinum One is still regarded as Emerald, so while you get special treatment from Qantas, don’t expect the same from other oneworld partner airlines.

How to get it: To qualify, you will need to fly a cool 3,600 status credits – that’s 15 return trips between Singapore and Sydney or Melbourne in business class.

Of the 3,600 status credits required, 2,700 must be earned from Qantas-marketed flight (i.e. flights with a QF code and flight number). This also means you can’t try with this the Jetstar network, so don’t even try.

So on top of the Platinum status benefits, this is what you’ll get:

Dedicated Platinum One team: You will get access to a dedicated hotline that only services Platinum One members. Of course, these are very experienced service staff and are experts in making travel arrangements too. If you search a little online, they are able to make some things happen, including making award seats available some times when there’s none left.

Waiver of service fees: Platinum One members will enjoy no-fee bookings over the phone, as well as any service fee for transferring Qantas points to family members.

Complimentary Platinum membership: You can nominate a friend or family member to receive a complimentary Qantas Frequent Flyer Platinum membership. Note that the nominee will only be Platinum for as long as you have your Platinum One membership, regardless of when you nominate him or her.

Complimentary lounge guest passes: You will receive two complimentary lounge guest passes which can be gifted to anyone for use at any Qantas international lounges, or at the Qantas Club lounges when travelling within Australia. The guests using the lounge passes do not need to be travelling with you.

Free exit row seats: Platinum One members will not have to pay to select exit row, extra legroom seats.

Additional bonuses when you accumulate even more status credits: At different milestones beyond 3,600 status credits, you will get bonus Qantas Points when you hit certain milestones:

  • At 5,000 status credits earned from Jetstar and Qantas flights, you will receive 75,000 extra Qantas Points
  • At 7,000 status credits earned from Jetstar and Qantas flights, you will receive an additional 100,000 extra Qantas Points

Other benefits: Platinum One members also enjoy complimentary access to a Qantas lounge at the Museum of Contemporary Arts in Sydney, a complimentary Qantas Wine Programme membership if you reside in Australia, as well other perks which you can find here.

Lifetime status

One of Qantas’ strengths is their offer of Lifetime status.

Not many airlines offer lifetime status. The U.S. airlines probably started them first, but beyond the Land of the Free there’re not many airlines that offer them.

In this part of the world, Singapore Airlines used to offer lifetime PPS Solitaire PPS status, but this has since stopped 10 years ago when SIA restructured its PPS programme.

How to get Qantas Lifetime status?

To get Lifetime Silver, you will need to accumulate 7,000 lifetime status credits.

For Lifetime Gold, you need 14,000 lifetime status credits.

Unfortunately, there’s no lifetime Platinum, so if you wish to retain your Platinum status, you will need to keep flying and clocking 1,200 status credits year after year.

But honestly, after clocking 14,000 lifetime status credits, you might be content with just sitting back and enjoying the business lounges without the pressure of keeping up.