Qatar Airways has brought back one of its regular sign-up promotions for those new to its Privilege Club frequent flyer programme, with this month seeing a return of the top offer we’ve seen for new customers, worth up to 7,500 Qmiles.
A revaluation of the airline’s Qmiles in late 2020, reversing a stealth no-notice cut in 2018, has reinvigorated Privilege Club, which currently offers attractive fuel surcharge-free award rates like Singapore to Europe from 70,000 miles + S$55 in the Qsuite (Business Class).
In another 2020 improvement, Qmiles no longer expire provided you have some earning or redemption activity at least once every three years.
New member promotion
In the latest sign-up offer for new Privilege Club members, Qatar Airways is offering at least 2,500 free Qmiles just for signing up by 31st March 2022, plus an additional 5,000 Qmiles when taking any paid Qatar Airways flight between now and 30th September 2022.
With overseas travel continuing to expand, this additional bonus could come in very handy, but even if you can’t fly with the airline in that timeframe, the free 2,500 Qmiles just for signing up are valid for at least three years and are worth close to S$50 against future Business Class redemptions (barring any sudden devaluations).
Join Privilege Club by 31 March 2022 using the promo code FLYQR3, to get 2,500 bonus Qmiles instantly. Plus, travel by 30 September 2022 to earn an additional 5,000 bonus Qmiles on your first flight as a member.Qatar Airways
You’ll be credited immediately upon joining with the first 2,500 Qmiles, which don’t require any flight activity, plus the potential 5,000 additional Qmiles for taking a paid flight before the end of September 2022. These will all be valid for at least 3 years under Qatar’s activity-based miles expiry policy.
You can transfer credit card points in Singapore to Privilege Club from Citi and Standard Chartered credit cards, so it’s relatively easy for most of our readers to top up their balance to achieve a redemption, or keep miles alive.
You can also tick off the activity box with a transfer from GrabRewards points.
Terms and conditions
Here are the full terms and conditions for this Privilege Club sign-up promotion:
This offer is only applicable to main members who join Privilege Club using the promo code FLYQR3.
- This offer is only applicable to main members who join Privilege Club using the promo code FLYQR3.
- Enrolment Period: 1 October 2021 – 31 March 2022
- Travel Period: 1 October 2021 – 30 September 2022
- Members who join using the Promo Code FLYQR3 will receive 2,500 bonus Qmiles at the time of enrolment.
- Bonus Qmiles will not be awarded at the time of enrolment or after completion of their first flight as a member, if the member does not join using the promo code FLYQR3.
- Members must quote their membership number at the time of booking or check-in, in order for 5,000 bonus Qmiles to be credited to their Privilege Club account, immediately after they complete their first flight with Qatar Airways as a member.
- 5,000 bonus Qmiles will only be awarded if the member takes a flight operated and marketed by Qatar Airways.
- 5,000 bonus Qmiles will not be awarded if the date of the member’s first flight with Qatar Airways is before their enrolment date.
- 5,000 bonus Qmiles will not be awarded if the member’s first flight with Qatar Airways as a member, is an award flight.
- Members may retroactively claim 5,000 bonus Qmiles if they travel before 30 September 2022.
- Existing members are not eligible to benefit from this offer and any duplicate accounts will be cancelled by Privilege Club.
Some Qatar redemptions are good value
As we mentioned above, last year 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.
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$110 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 are higher than using Qatar via Doha, in addition to the extra miles.
Qatar is also serving more cities in the US than SIA, including Boston, Chicago and Washington D.C., which might suit your travel plans more closely.
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 in 2019.
Qatar Airways has also recently introduced a new ‘Business Suite’ cabin on its Boeing 787-9 aircraft, featuring closed-door privacy and direct aisle access.
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.
Sadly the lounge is still closed due to COVID-19, but we’re hoping it will be available again this year.
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.
Even if you won’t be taking a paid Qatar Airways flight between now and 30th September 2022, the basic 2,500 Qmiles bonus for all new members would reduce your effective miles outlay for a future Singapore to Athens redemption in Business Class to 67,500 Qmiles.
With taxes of only around S$50 to pay, that’s fantastic value.
Decent bonuses like this simply to join a frequent flyer programme are relatively rare, so this is certainly a good time to sign up for the Qatar Airways Privilege Club scheme, even if you don’t think you’ll use it.
Hat-tip to OMAAT.
(Cover Photo: Qatar Airways)