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New: Convert GrabRewards points to and from Qatar Airways Qmiles

You can now make two-way transfers between GrabRewards Points and Qatar Airways Qmiles.

GrabRewards, the loyalty currency of the Grab app in Singapore, has a new airline transfer partner under its wings, with the addition of conversions between your points balance and the Qatar Airways Privilege Club programme now live in the app.

For the first time, it’s now also possible to transfer another partner’s reward points into Grab, with the ability to shift your Qmiles across to GrabRewards points too.

(Image: Grab)

As usual with these transfer options, the value is not fantastic, though this could be a useful option for a small top-up of frequent flyer miles, or an easy way to keep your entire Qmiles balance valid for another three years.

Transfer from GrabRewards to Qmiles

Currently Grab’s only airline transfer partner is Singapore Airlines, with the ability to transfer your points in the following denominations:

  • 500 points > 50 KrisFlyer miles
  • 1,000 points > 100 KrisFlyer miles
  • 5,000 points > 500 KrisFlyer miles

Here’s how the new Qatar Privilege Club option stacks up:

Transfer Ratio
GrabRewards points    Qmiles
1,200 : 100

You can convert any existing GrabRewards points balances into Qmiles easily, using the Grab app.

Follow the instructions given on the app to complete the redemption, which includes:

  • Looking up the redeemed award in ‘My Rewards’
  • Linking your account by entering your Qatar Airways Privilege Club (QRPC) membership number

Unlike with KrisFlyer, conversion from GrabRewards points into Qmiles is immediate.

As you can see it’s not a great rate, with 20% more GrabRewards points needed to make a transfer into Qmiles than an equivalent conversion into the KrisFlyer programme would give you.

On the plus side, if you are a Qatar member, the airline’s Qmiles now work on an activity-based expiry policy, meaning any earning or redemption will ‘reset the clock’ for any miles in your account – keeping them alive for another three years.

Earning a redemption in the Qatar Airways Qsuite using GrabRewards points isn’t realistic, but it’s a good top-up or validity renewal option. (Photo: Qatar Airways)

Aside from a very small top-up to achieve a redemption, we see this validity extension as the most useful prospect for the new conversion option, since otherwise you can only credit miles into the Qatar programme via Citi or Standard Chartered credit cards in Singapore.

Transfer from Qmiles to GrabRewards

Unlike with KrisFlyer miles, Grab is also supporting conversions from Qatar’s Privilege Club into GrabRewards points.

No big surprise in value terms on transfers in that direction though, where you’ll achieve only a 1:1 ratio.

Transfer Ratio
Qmiles    GrabRewards points
1,000 : 1,000

A transfer from Qmiles to GrabRewards will also keep your remaining Qmiles balance intact for a fresh three-year period, since this counts as activity, but 1,000 GrabReward points is typically only worth about S$2 when redeemed.

You could easily get 10 times that valuation using your Qmiles for Business Class flight redemption.

Here are the terms and conditions for Qmiles to GrabRewards points transfers:

  • GrabRewards points converted from Qatar Airways Privilege Club do not count towards tier progression.
  • Once a points conversion request is submitted, it cannot be cancelled or reversed. All conversions are final and non-refundable.
  • Your account in both programs must be in good standing prior to the transaction.
  • In the event of discrepancy, check with Qatar Airways Privilege Club support.

Here are the steps you’ll need to follow if you want to transfer Qmiles into GrabRewards points:

  Click here to convert Qmiles to Grab

Conversion from Qmiles into GrabRewards points is immediate.

Qatar redemptions are good value again

As we highlighted last year, 2020 saw the welcome news that Qatar Airways had slashed award rates for members redeeming on its own flights, back to the more reasonable pre-devaluation levels of early 2018.

A GrabRewards transfer alone certainly isn’t going to score you a Qatar Airways redemption ticket very easily, but with no fuel surcharges applied on award tickets, the QRPC programme is now among the best value options for Business Class redemptions in the excellent Qsuite (see our review), especially from Singapore to Europe and back.

The Qsuite features on all Qatar Airways flights to and from Singapore. (Photo: Qatar Airways)

That means you might be able to top-up a small amount from GrabRewards to make up an account shortfall to secure a redemption, in which case taking the hit over the Grab to KrisFlyer conversion rate might be a price worth paying.

Here are some award redemption rate examples.

Business Class redemptions from Singapore

Route T
Before After
Singapore
Doha
67,500
+S$58
50,000
+S$58
n/a
Singapore
London
125,500
+S$68
75,000
+S$68
92,000
+S$55
Singapore
New York
169,000
+S$91
95,000
+S$91
99,000
+S$77*

* S$113 if routing via FRA

As you can see, award rates from Singapore have fallen across the board, but it’s Europe flights that get the biggest benefit compared to KrisFlyer, costing 75,000 miles instead of 92,000 miles, with not dissimilar taxes.

Even better, closer cities in Europe like Athens and Sofia are priced at 70,000 miles one-way in Business.

You can now transfer Qmiles miles to KrisFlyer

The ability to transfer Qmiles into GrabRewards points opens up an interesting opportunity to effectively transfer from Qmiles into the KrisFlyer programme, via Grab on the way.

That’s because, as you probably know, GrabRewards points can already be transferred into KrisFlyer Miles, in the blocks we mentioned earlier in the article.

For example, if you transfer 1,000 Qmiles into GrabRewards, you’ll have 1,000 points in the programme. These can then be transferred into 100 KrisFlyerMiles.

That’s an awful 10:1 ratio, so of course it’s of absolutely no value, but it’s interesting that this is now possible, and one option to ‘cash out’ of Qmiles if you had orphan points in there, or had given up on the scheme.

More partners are promised

Qatar Airways is Grab’s first partner supporting transfers into the GrabRewards programme, though there is already the promise of more to come.

We’ll be welcoming more and more partners on board, so be sure to bookmark this page so you can check back easily.

GrabRewards

Summary

No major benefits to shout about here, but it’s always nice to have another partner conversion option for frequent flyer miles, no matter how small the denominations.

For the Qatar Airways Privilege Club, we see the major benefit of transfers to and from the GrabRewards programme being able to keep your miles balance alive for three more years, if that becomes necessary.

Otherwise the existing transfer option to KrisFlyer is much better value, and if that’s what you’re doing already, rather than redeeming for one of Grab’s (probably slightly better value) cash offset / voucher alternatives, this new partner relationship probably won’t persuade you to change anything!

(Cover Photo: Qatar Airways)

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