QANTAS Airways is encouraging its customers to use their travel credits with a double points offer on all eligible domestic and international flights.
Although more than $1.2 billion in travel credits has already been used the past two-and-a-half years, Qantas is now sweetening the deal, with all flights booked on tick before February attracting double points.
Almost 900,000 customers have “COVID credits” left over from the pandemic, totalling $600 million, Qantas said.
An analysis of these credits shows almost $300 million of COVID credits are made up of bookings worth under $1,000, with half of the credits worth between $499 and $1,000.
The offer applies to the base rate of points earn, and only applies to flights with a Qantas flight number.
COVID credits received during the pandemic expire at the end of next year, meaning customers must book and travel before then.
Over the coming days, Qantas will send reminders to customers with COVID credits either directly or through their travel advisor about how to access the double points offer; customers who are not already Frequent Flyer members will be able to sign up for free.
To help passengers use their credits, Qantas is boosting its domestic capacity from the end of March.
Services between Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane will increase by 57 additional return flights per week, increasing capacity on the triangle by 11 points to 93% of pre-COVID levels; Qantas is also adding seats on A330 widebody services to and from Perth.
Qantas Group Chief Customer Officer Markus Svensson said the airline has seen strong take-up of travel credit redemptions as more international flights returned in recent months.
“Our systems were never designed to unwind literally millions of bookings due to a pandemic and there have been some obvious challenges for us and for customers that we’ve worked hard to fix,” he said.
“Throughout the pandemic we’ve made using travel credits easier, including extending their expiry, and we’re now encouraging the remaining customers to put their travel credit towards their next holiday.
“We know that people start planning their next holiday while they are on their current one, which is why we’re launching this offer at the start of the Christmas break.”
Svensson reminded customers the credit doesn’t need to cover the cost of the booking for to receive double points as long as you use the entire value.
“For example, a family of four flying Economy return to London could each receive an additional 18,600 bonus points just from putting a single $50 credit towards the booking…the points you earn can then go towards your next trip.”