Amex Is Offering A 20% Transfer Bonus To Qantas Frequent Flyer [Possibly Targeted]


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American Express added Qantas Frequent Flyer as a transfer partner for the Membership Rewards program back in June last year and we’ve seen it offer a few transfer bonuses in the intervening months…and now we have another one.

Note: It may be that some have had this offer open to from earlier this month but, for me, this is a new transfer bonus so I assume it will be new for a lot of others too.

20% Bonus On Amex Transfers To Qantas

I’m seeing this transfer bonus on two Membership Rewards accounts, but it may still be targeted – you’ll have to check your online Amex account to see if this is an option for you.

If you have been targeted, bear in mind that Citi’s ThankYou program is also a Qantas transfer partner so that may be another potential source of points if you don’t have enough Amex Membership Rewards points for the award you’d like to book.

Are Qantas Points Useful?

Possibly…but it will depend on what you’d like to use them for.

Qantas is a member of the oneworld alliance so its points can be used to book travel on any oneworld airline (American, Cathay Pacific, Malaysia Airlines, etc…) but, as a word of warning, you should take int account the surcharges added to most awards booked with Qantas Frequent Flyer miles before deciding just how good a deal this is for you

Here’s the Qantas award chart for travel on Qantas, America Airlines, Emirates, Air Fiji, Air Vanuatu, Airnorth and select Jetstar flights:

Click to enlarge

…and this should start to give you an idea of how expensive awards can be.

Los Angeles to Sydney is a little under 7,500 miles in distance so, per the award chart above, a one-way Business Class award would set you back 108,400 points…and that’s a LOT considering what other airlines (like American) would charge for the exact same flights.

Qantas has a separate award chart for “partner classic rewards” and this is for flights on the following airlines:

Air Niugini, Alaska Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, China Airlines, China Eastern, Cathay Dragon, EL AL, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, LATAM Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qatar Airways, Royal Jordanian, S7 Airlines and SriLankan Airlines.

Click to enlarge

This isn’t much better than the first award chart but there a glimmer of light amongst this gloom and that glimmer comes courtesy of EL AL.

EL AL has been a Qantas partner for almost 3 years and, because of the relatively few partnerships that EL AL actually has and because Qantas doesn’t add surcharges to awards on EL AL, Qantas Points can be a good way of booking premium cabin awards to/from Tel Aviv (this was a considerably better deal before the Qantas devaluation that we saw last year).

EL AL offers flights from Tel Aviv to 7 airports in North America and here’s how many Qantas Points are needed to fly to/from each of those locations:

I’m not about to claim that there’s any exceptional value to be had here but, given the limited options out there, Qantas Points can be a good way to save money if you’re looking to fly to Tel Aviv in any kind of comfort.

With the current 20% Amex transfer bonus in place, a one-way Business Class fare between New York/Boston and Tel Aviv would cost 75,000 Membership Rewards points and that’s not a bad deal for a flight of that length.

Bottom Line

Qantas awards are, on the whole, expensive and the surcharges that most of the awards attract don’t make things any better…but the EL AL option is definitely worth investigating as there’s value to be had there.

Premium cabin flights between the US and Israel are generally pretty expensive so Qantas Points can be put to very good use on EL AL’s routes to Tel Aviv. For most other awards I would probably look elsewhere.

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