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Redeem Qantas Classic Rewards on ANY Jetstar Asia flight in September

You can achieve 3 cents value per Qantas Frequent Flyer Point by redeeming expensive Jetstar Asia flights in September 2019

EXPIRED This article relates to an offer or promotion which has now expired.

3K A320 (Alec Wilson)

Our regular readers will know there are a few flying related topics we tend not to talk about very much, if at all. Low cost airlines, Economy Class, and using your miles or points to fly Economy Class, are among our least favourite subjects.

A new promotion from Qantas Frequent Flyer has just launched, forcing us to face all these fears at once. That’s because, through gritted teeth, we have to admit this one can get actually you good value for your miles.

How to accrue Qantas Points

Before we get into this offer, it’s an obvious requirement that you’ll have to have (or be able to obtain) a decent Qantas Frequent Flyer Points balance in order to take advantage.

QFF.png

You might already have a stash of Qantas Points, but in all fairness it isn’t the best frequent flyer scheme in Singapore and so most of our readers simply don’t.

However, you can transfer points into Qantas Frequent Flyer at exactly the same rate as to KrisFlyer from the following credit card rewards programmes in Singapore:

  • Citi
  • DBS
  • Standard Chartered (X card only)

Note that while Citi and DBS will require a minimum of 10,000 points in each transfer, with 10,000-point blocks after that, Standard Chartered X Card holders can transfer to Qantas in much more useful 1,000-point blocks.

What’s the deal?

Instead of paying cash to fly on a Jetstar Asia flight to or from Singapore, it’s instead possible to use your Qantas Frequent Flyer Points to offset the fare and only pay the taxes instead.

Nothing particularly new there, though the September 2019 deal differs slightly.

How’s it different to Scoot using KrisFlyer?

Most of our readers are probably familiar with the terrible redemption deal KrisFlyer has with Scoot, where your miles simply offset the cost of your ticket at a fixed (and dismal) 0.95 cents each.

Scoot.jpg
This Scoot flight to Osaka costs S$710, or 74,550 KrisFlyer miles. That’s more than enough to fly Suites Class to Tokyo!

The more pricey the flight, the more miles you’ll have to fork out, so it never becomes a good value option no matter how expensive the fare is. In fact the value remains static regardless. It’s why we recommend only earning KrisFlyer miles when flying Scoot, never redeeming.

Using Qantas Classic Rewards on Jetstar is not the same.

If you can get a Classic Reward on a Jetstar Asia (3K) flight, the following rates apply using Qantas Points, based on four distance zones:

3K Award Table.jpg

Note that for bookings created on or after 17th September 2019 a new awards chart is in force, however these four rates are unchanged.

If you’ve ever looked into it before you’ll know the big caveat – when flights are busy (and therefore expensive), you generally won’t see any Classic Reward availability on Jetstar.

Take this Friday evening from Singapore to Bangkok:

Flights SINBKK 30Aug.jpg

The ‘expensive’ 7.15pm flight simply isn’t available as a Classic Reward, as the following screenshot confirms.

Awards SINBKK 30Aug.jpg
Something’s missing

That’s changed in this offer, and here’s why.

In September, every available 3K seat can be booked!

For the first time, Qantas Frequent Flyer is making every available seat on Jetstar Asia (3K) flights bookable using Qantas Points with a Classic Flight Reward for all of September 2019.

Promo.jpg

Booking is though qantas.com (desktop version).

If you don’t have a Qantas Frequent Flyer account, it’s free for Singapore-based customers to sign up (the airline charges Australian residents AU$99.50 to be a member, so count yourselves lucky!).

Examples

Since every available seat on every Jetstar Asia flight to or from Singapore is eligible, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out that it’s the expensive fares where you’ll get the best value here, thanks to the fixed price zone based award chart.

For example this promotion isn’t going to work well if you need to fly from Singapore to Jakarta on Jetstar next Wednesday afternoon, where the fare component is less than S$40.

Singapore to Jakarta
3K203 – 4th September 2019
JQtrans.pngCash Booking QFF.pngClassic Reward
Fare: S$38.20
Points: 6,400
Taxes: S$49.80 S$49.80
Saving S$38.20
Value per Point → 0.60 cents

Ouch! You won’t want to be doing this – it’s even worse than the Scoot / KrisFlyer 0.95 cents per mile deal.

Let’s look at a much better example in terms of value. Jetstar is one of the few airlines to fly non-stop from Singapore to Medan, and Sunday 29th September 2019 is not a cheap date to do so, at S$226 one-way including taxes.

In case you’re wondering whether Jetstar is just ‘overpricing’ on this route, the only other non-stop alternative that day is a SilkAir flight costing S$529.80.

Singapore to Medan
3K283 – 29th September 2019
JQtrans.pngCash Booking QFF.pngClassic Reward
Fare: S$176.20
Points: 6,400
Taxes: S$49.80 S$49.80
Saving S$176.20
Value per Point → 2.75 cents

Now we’re talking. Your 6,400 Qantas points are saving you S$176 in this example.

How about a week in Da Nang from 6th to 15th September? That trip is going to set you back S$550.16 booking directly with Jetstar, including taxes.

Again, this isn’t Jetstar chancing their luck with a high fare. Your only other non-stop alternative on the same dates is SilkAir at S$860.40.

Singapore to Da Nang (return)
3K541/542 – 6th to 15th September 2019
JQtrans.pngCash Booking QFF.pngClassic Reward
Fare: S$469.76
Points: 19,200
Taxes: S$80.40 S$80.40
Saving S$469.76
Value per Point → 2.45 cents

We would certainly transfer 20,000 points from Citi to Qantas Frequent Flyer to save around $470 on this journey, and remember provided seats are available for sale then during September you can redeem these as Classic Rewards without restriction.

Da Nang.jpg
The Da Nang itinerary as an award booking (click to enlarge)

What’s the best deal?

Anything selling for a high price should be a good deal. Broadly speaking these wouldn’t normally be made available as Classic Rewards. However, do compare Jetstar fares to competitors you would alternatively consider on the same date/route (Scoot can often be cheaper, and offer similar timings).

Let’s look at Darwin on Sunday this week (only Jetstar and SilkAir fly this route non-stop).

Singapore to Darwin
3K161 – 1st September 2019
JQtrans.pngCash Booking QFF.pngClassic Reward
Fare: S$405.60
Points: 14,400
Taxes: S$67.40 S$67.40
Saving S$405.60
Value per Point → 2.82 cents

2.82 cents per point / mile is usually Business Class territory in value terms.

Okinawa at the end of September is also expensive, with Jetstar providing the only non-stop option from Singapore on this route.

Singapore to Okinawa
3K791 – 29th September 2019
JQtrans.pngCash Booking QFF.pngClassic Reward
Fare: S$431.20
Points: 14,400
Taxes: S$49.80 S$49.80
Saving S$431.20
Value per Point → 2.99 cents

On either the Darwin or Okinawa examples if two of you were travelling, 30,000 points would be enough to transfer from Citi or DBS to make it happen, with only a small 1,200 Points balance left over in your Qantas account.

We didn’t look extensively, so you can probably find even better deals than this. Since every available seat on every Jetstar Asia flight will be eligible during September, you’ll arguably get the absolute best value on a last-minute Friday night or Sunday night flight, when the airline is selling the final few seats at a very high price.

It won’t always be realistic to jump on such an offer using QFF Points, given than most of our readers don’t hold a significant balance and considering the transfer time from credit card points will be at least one day (though we’ve heard Standard Chartered is moving X Card points to some ‘new partner’ FFPs within hours).

Also bear in mind Classic Flight Rewards are only available until 24 hours prior to departure time.

Baggage

It’s also worth bearing in mind that Qantas Classic Rewards on Jetstar are inclusive of a 20kg baggage allowance per passenger. We’ve assumed a ticket with no checked baggage allowance in the Jetstar pricing, so assuming you would have to pay extra for a bag the value per mile becomes even greater.

It’s S$35 to add a 20kg bag from Singapore to Darwin, for example, something we have not accounted for above. It takes the value per point above 3 cents on the Darwin route.

Things to know

Eligible flights must have a 3K flight code, operating to or from Singapore. For example flying from Singapore to Osaka with a stop in Taipei is definitely included. Flying 3K only from Taipei to Osaka does not have to be made available for a Classic Flight Reward in this promotion, as it does not include Singapore as an origin / destination.

JQ A320 Cabin.jpg
Flying on a Jetstar Asia A320 is much like flying on Scoot

Redemptions must be booked on qantas.com for travel between 1st and 30th September 2019. Reward seats must be booked at least 24 hours before scheduled departure.

Taxes, fees and carrier charges are payable in addition to the points required, are subject to change and are quoted at the time of booking.

Status Credits and Qantas Points will not be earned when flying on Classic Flight Rewards.

How to book

Book at qantas.com and tick the ‘Use points’ option. This will open the Frequent Flyer Login section for you to enter your details.

Search.jpg

You’ll see the Classic Flight Reward symbol alongside the flight.

Result.jpg

The number of points needed is displayed (Singapore to Sanya is 1,221 miles, putting it in Zone 3 at 14,400 Points one-way).

Cost.jpg

Your flight selection is then confirmed. Notice how each passenger gets a 20kg baggage allowance on a Classic Reward ticket.

Summary.jpg

Changes or refunds

To change your Classic Reward to a different flight costs 5,000 Qantas Points per passenger, to cancel costs 6,000 Qantas Points per passenger.

This is a significant chunk of any Jetstar Asia award booking, so you’ll want to have firm travel plans to avoid these penalties.

Provided there are seats available on your preferred flight in September a Classic Reward will be available too, so you can probably leave it quite late to book, though remember you must do so at least 24 hours before departure time.

Summary

If you have travel plans to make in September this is a good and rare opportunity to book an expensive Jetstar Asia flight (if you can find one, and we found a few!) with a much more reasonable level of miles / points rather than using cash.

Jetstar A320 2.jpg

Jetstar is flying from Singapore to destinations as close as Kuala Lumpur and as far as Osaka, so there are a few options here. The best value is for the highest fares, and that often means routes where Jetstar currently goes head-to-head with SilkAir alone, like Siem Reap, Darwin, Da Nang and Medan.

There are also some routes where Jetstar provides the only non-stop option from Singapore, like Okinawa and Sanya.

If Qantas Frequent Flyer is new to you, you’ll need to sign up for a free account and have a useful balance in one of the three credit card rewards programs allowing such transfers in order to get started.

Finally if you’re lucky enough to already be a Qantas Gold, Platinum or Platinum One tier member you can access the Qantas Singapore Lounge at Changi Terminal 1 when departing on a Jetstar Asia (3K) flight, whether you booked using points or cash.

It’s open from 2.30pm to midnight each day, so pick an afternoon or evening flight to take advantage.

(Cover Photo: Alec Wilson)

4 comments

    1. Yes just September at this stage. You might find Classic Rewards on flights later than that, but they are usually the cheaper ones so the value doesn’t add up much better than 1.5 cents per point.

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