Qantas has responded to complaints about its pricing increases by allowing customers to purchase 225,000 seats using loyalty points.
The airline said that while costs had gone up owing to “strong demand and rising fuel prices,” the number of points needed to buy a ticket hadn’t changed in “years.”
Critics say major airlines are raising costs to take advantage of increased demand in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, despite receiving millions of dollars in compensation.
Qantas said on Tuesday that for six weeks across 21 destinations this summer, all seats would be available for booking with accrued points.
This is a record release of Points Planes,” Olivia Wirth, the airline’s chief loyalty officer, said, “that will allow thousands of our regular travellers to utilise their points to book a holiday this summer.”
“Whenever we launch Points Planes, we notice tremendous demand from our frequent flyers, and they often sell out.” During peak travel months, these flights are to some of Australia’s top summer destinations, so we recommend booking as soon as possible.”
“While strong demand and increasing fuel prices have caused airfares for all airlines to rise from historic lows in the last 18 months, the number of points necessary to buy these tickets has stayed the same in years. Most of these itineraries offer reward tickets starting at 8,000 points one-way, with a family of four able to fly from Sydney to the Gold Coast and back for less than 65,000 points.”
“In addition to these Points Planes, over the next year, more than five million incentive seats will be available for frequent flyers across Qantas and Jetstar domestic and international flights and our network of 45 partner airlines.”
More than two-thirds of the 118 billion Qantas Points accrued by frequent fliers in the past fiscal year were earned on the ground through credit cards, retail, and a wide variety of other partners.
Up to 2 December 2022 at 11:59 am, all available Economy and Business Class seats on the designated Points Planes will be available for booking as Classic Reward seats. Paying with cash is an option for booking flights like this.
Qantas Hotels and Qantas Holidays reservations are now 30–45 percent cheaper in points for travellers bound for coastal holiday places.