Qatar Airways has been running regular promotions to increase membership of its Privilege Club frequent flyer programme over the last few months, and for June the airline is back with a 1,500 Qmiles bonus offer for new members – just for enrolling.
The Privilege Club programme, which lost significant value following a stealth devaluation in May 2018, rolled back its award rates to previous levels in November last year. That boosted the program to the top of the list for Singapore – Europe redemptions in the popular Qsuite, with no fuel surcharges.
The airline also changed to an activity-based miles expiry policy last year, making it easier to retain your balance with a simple earning or redemption transaction once every three years.
New member promotion
This month Qatar Airways has launched a new offer, awarding new Privilege Club members with a bonus of 1,500 free Qmiles just for signing up to the programme.
The bonus is designed for Accor Live Limitless (ALL) members, but in reality the application does not ask for your ALL membership details and the promotion can be used by anyone.
Of course there’s nothing to stop you from signing up for a free ALL account if you’re not already a member, just to be on the safe side.
There is no need to book or take a Qatar Airways flight in order to receive the 1,500 Qmiles sign-up bonus, but you’ll also be entitled to triple Qmiles accrual for Qatar Airways bookings made by 30th June 2021 for travel by 30th September 2021, by entering promo code “ACCOR21”.
You can transfer credit card points in Singapore to Qatar Privilege Club from Citi and Standard Chartered credit cards, so it’s relatively easy for most of our readers to achieve redemptions using the programme.
Terms and conditions
Here are the full terms and conditions for this Accor / Privilege Club sign-up promotion:
- This offer is applicable only to main members who join to Privilege Club using the promo code ACCOR21.
- Enrolment Period: 01 June 2021 to 30 June 2021.
- Members who join with the applicable Promo Code will receive 1,500 bonus Qmiles at the time of enrolment.
- Members who did not quote the Promo Code at the time of enrolment will not receive the bonus Qmiles.
- Offer is applicable only for flights operated and marketed by Qatar Airways.
- Travel on Award tickets is not eligible for bonus Qmiles.
- Existing Privilege Club members are not entitled to participate in this offer and any duplicate accounts will be cancelled by Privilege Club.
Qatar redemptions are good value again
Everyone has probably heard the news by now, but Qatar’s rollback of award rates in late 2020 has given this programme a new lease of life, especially for our readers looking to redeem in Business Class from Asia to Europe.
With no fuel surcharges applied on award tickets, this has elevated the programme to among the best value options for Business Class redemptions in the excellent Qsuite (see our review), especially from Singapore to Europe and back.
Here are some examples.
Business Class redemptions from Singapore
* 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.
For Singapore to USA flights the saving is less significant at 4,000 miles (95k vs. 99k), though it’s worth noting if you redeem a Business Saver to New York via Frankfurt with SIA the taxes higher than using Qatar via Doha, in addition to the extra miles.
Qatar is also serving more cities in the US, including Boston, Chicago and Washington D.C.
Asia Miles is the only other widely held frequent flyer currency for our Singapore readers offering good value redemptions on Qatar Airways, but beware the fuel surcharge!
For example, even though Singapore to London via Doha on Qatar comes in at 70,000 Asia Miles (5,000 less than using Qmiles), S$477 of taxes and fees are payable due to the significant fuel surcharge Qatar Airways passes on to most partners. That significantly outweighs the miles saved.
Even if you’re flying on Qatar Airways without the Qsuite, chances are you’ll secure their flat-bed product with direct aisle access in a 1-2-1 configuration, such as on the Boeing 787 and some Airbus A350s.
These are still a great way to travel. See our full review of the experience between Athens and Doha.
Don’t forget Qatar’s lounges
With attractive redemption rates again, another benefit of flying Qatar Airways is the airline’s own lounges.
While the large facilities you’ll have access to on a Business Class award ticket during transit in Doha are nice, it’s the carrier’s ‘outstation’ Premium Lounges that really shine, including facilities at London Heathrow, Paris, Bangkok and right here in Singapore.
With à la carte dining, spacious shower suites and a martini bar, including a choice of two Champagnes, the new Singapore Lounge even puts SIA’s own First Class facilities to shame.
Qatar Airways has been offering several sign-up promotions for its Privilege Club programme in recent months, and while this one isn’t as good as the recent offer for 2,500 Qmiles on enrollment, it’s still a nice deal with 1,500 Qmiles worth anywhere between S$20 and S$30 depending on your personal valuation.
It would reduce your effective miles outlay for a Singapore to Athens redemption in Business Class to 68,500 miles, with taxes of less than S$70 to pay and the Qsuite to look forward to between Singapore and Doha, which is a great deal.
Qatar Airways is also currently selling its Qmiles with a 30% bonus, however this involves buying miles at 2.3 US cents (~3 Singapore cents) each, which is way over the odds. The airline briefly offered miles at its cheapest rate, around 1.5 US cents each, in December last year.
(Cover Photo: Qatar Airways)