If you’re all at sea over your Qantas frequent flyer status, don’t worry, the airline is (probably) throwing you a lifeline.
If you make the ‘high flyer’ cut then your status, if it’s set to expire between now and June 2022, will be extended if you book an eligible flight prior to your membership year’s end.
Qantas announced the status extension this morning, explaining it would be useful for top tier flyers who are facing a possible tier downgrade between now and June 2022.
Qantas made the same offer in November last year for members facing a possible tier downgrade (such as Platinum to Gold, or Gold to Silver) in 2021. There are five membership levels in Qantas’ Frequent Flyer program, from Bronze up to Platinum One.
Qantas is throwing this “retention lifeline” to flyers because international borders remain closed and because domestic lockdowns are currently making it difficult for members to earn the required Status Credits to retain their tier level.
The extension will apply to Australian and New Zealand based tiered members (Silver and above) with a membership year ending in or before June 2022. They will be able to maintain their status for another year by booking an eligible flight prior to their membership year end, for travel until June 2022.
Once the offer is activated Qantas Frequent Flyer will also roll over eligible Status Credits that members earned this year into their new membership year.
Qantas Loyalty Chief Executive Officer Olivia Wirth said of the extension: “We know how important tier status is to our members and many of them have built it up over many years of flying with us.”
“The offer to retain their current status by booking just one eligible flight is a great way for them to secure the additional 12 months of the benefits that come with being Silver or Gold, Platinum or Platinum One members, which will come into its own when everyone is back flying.”
Ms Wirth added, “Our members have remained highly engaged with the program even in the midst of a global pandemic. We’ve seen bookings spike when restrictions have eased after previous outbreaks and we’re confident we’ll see the same when borders re-open this time. In fact, our data shows that 96% of Qantas customers intend to travel domestically in the next 12 months.”
“Maintaining their tier is not just about status for our highly valued Frequent Flyers, it’s about the range of benefits they enjoy when they fly with us or partner airlines, including the most extensive network of domestic and global lounges, extra checked baggage allowances and priority airport privileges.”
Here’s hoping next year yet another extension will prove unnecessary. In the meantime: at least we can all brush up on our aviation etiquette in anticipation of getting back in the skies (some people definitely need it).