Qantas Introduces The Points Plane

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Qantas launches dedicated Points Plane-program where every seat is only available to those redeeming Frequent Flyer points from QF’s program.

Qantas Points Plane

The first plane is A380 on October 21 this year from Melbourne to Tokyo and return flight is on A330 on Sunday the same week (October 26). Members are required to pay all the fees + carrier surcharges on these redemptions that will go live at 7AM AEST on May 16.

You can access Qantas page for the points plane here.

Here are the fees associated with the Points Plane:

Qantas Points Plane Fees

Here’s the press release from Qantas:

Qantas has announced the first of a series of dedicated Frequent Flyer redemption flights across its network with seats only available to members redeeming Qantas Points.

The inaugural Points Plane will be an Airbus A380 operating from Melbourne to Tokyo (Narita) on 21 October 2019, with Qantas Frequent Flyers able to book seats from Thursday 16 May.

The concept is one of many Qantas Loyalty is exploring to reward Qantas Frequent Flyer members and provide even more redemption opportunities.

Members will be able to book any seat on board (14 First, 64 Business, 35 Premium Economy and 371 Economy seats) at the standard Qantas Points redemption rate for the route. Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum members will all have equal opportunity to secure a booking on dedicated Points Plane flights.

To maximise flexibility on return travel, members have the choice of booking on an A330 return Points Plane on October 26th or depart on an alternative date of their choice by booking a Classic Reward seat with Qantas or a partner airline, or using Points Plus Pay on any commercially available seat.

The inaugural Points Plane will also have a distinctive inflight service with special on-board experiences including a bespoke cocktail and meal service, signature pyjamas and inflight giveaways.

Qantas Loyalty CEO Olivia Wirth said that flight redemptions are Qantas Frequent Flyer members’ favourite way to use their Qantas Points.

“This is the first time we have dedicated an entire aircraft – let alone an A380 – to our frequent flyers, and we are expecting to see significant demand for these flights,” Ms Wirth said.

“Four flight redemptions are made every minute and sixty upgrades are confirmed every hour. We know our members love to redeem their points on travel, so we’re excited to be able to give them new ways to access these rewards.

“Member-exclusive flights mean more redemption opportunities for our members and less time searching for reward seats.

“If this concept is a success, which we think it will be, Qantas hopes to operate more regular Frequent Flyer only flights to other international and domestic destinations in the near future.”

Qantas occasionally moves unscheduled aircraft around the network for a range of operational and commercial reasons – creating opportunities for initiatives like Points Planes.

Japan is a popular destination for Qantas Frequent Flyers and one of the top 5 most searched destinations on qantas.com making it the perfect first Points Plane port.

Qantas Points required for booking seats on the inaugural Points Plane:

Economy 35,000 Qantas Points*

Premium Economy 54,000 Qantas Points*

Business 72,000 Qantas Points*

First 108,000 Qantas Points*

Conclusion

This the Points Plane program is gimmicky. I would rather see Qantas providing better Classic Award availability on its flights instead of having these one off flights every once in a while.

It is nevertheless interesting that they are trying to make this an “experience” by providing amenities not available on regular scheduled flights.

Qantas notes that they sometimes ferry planes across network (empty) and now they try to burn some liabilities off their books by providing seats for frequent fliers on these unscheduled flights while collecting carrier surcharges (cash on their pocket) along the way.

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