Points - airlines
Cathay Pacific recently announced that it will integrate its Asia Miles program (used for award flights) with its Marco Polo Club
program (broader rewards and tier benefits). Over the coming months, Cathay Pacific will be rolling out a range of new offers –
and these will culminate in a refreshed program ("Cathay") in the first half of 2022.
We will provide more details as they are released, but for comparison follow the link to see an infographic summarising the Cathay Pacific programs as at June 2021.
Alaska Airlines is adjusting its partnerships as part of its intergration into the OneWorld Alliance. As part of that, Alaska
Airlines will cease its partnership with Emirates on July 31, 2021.
Through 31 July 2021, MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K members flying on Emirates on a paid ticket, no matter the class, will receive lounge access at the Emirates Business Class flagship lounge in Dubai International Airport (DXB).
There remains a small window of opportunity. Award redemptions on Emirates are available through July 31, 2021. For future travel, changes made to a booked award on Emirates on or after August 1, 2021, will require cancellation of the award and re-booking on a different Alaska Airlines partner.
Perhaps unsurprisingly given it is another OneWorld member, award bookings for Qatar will become available in August 2021.
Velocity has welcomed 7-Eleven as a new partner. Velocity members will now be able to earn points when purchasing fuel or convenience
items at any of the 700+ convenience stores located around Australia.
This will provide an easy way for Velocity's 10 million members to boost their points balance, in anticipation of when we can more easily take to the skies again.
Velocity members will earn:
- 2 Points per $1 on eligible 7-Eleven in-store purchases;
- 2 Points per litre on premium fuel at 7-Eleven; and
- 1 Point per litre on regular fuel at 7-Eleven.
Plus, Velocity members will earn 711 bonus Points on their first eligible purchase at 7-Eleven made by 28 June 2021.
For Velocity members to take advantage of this partnership, you will need to:
- Have your Velocity membership details handy;
- Download the My 7-Eleven app and follow the steps to link your Velocity account to their My 7-Eleven My Card;
- Make an eligible purchase from a 7-Eleven convenience store or fuel station and upon payment scan, your Velocity linked My 7-Eleven My Card.
Qantas announced plans on May 31st to giveaway a suite of mega prizes to Australians who get the COVID-19 vaccine, including unlimited
travel for a year. This is in addition to the announcement a week earlier that it would offer frequent flyer points along with travel
vouchers and status credits to Australians who get inoculated. It is understood the options being considered by Qantas include
giving people who get both their two COVID-19 jabs up to 1000 frequent flyer points, flight vouchers towards domestic and international
flights, and status credits, which allow people to move into high Frequent Flyer tiers.
Any reward would be available to people who had already received their jabs and the program would run until the end of 2021 when the vaccine rollout is due to be completed; the details are yet to be completed. Now, the national carrier has launched a further incentive scheme which it hopes will boost vaccination rates and help get state and international borders reopened permanently.
“We’re looking at having 10 mega-prizes, at least one for each state or territory, where a family of four can have unlimited free travel for a year on the Qantas and Jetstar networks,” CEO Alan Joyce revealed on Channel 7’s Sunrise program.
The trips would be in economy class and each of the ten winners. “In addition to that, the Accor Group have come on board and they’re offering one million Accor Points, which gives free accommodation at 400 hotels and resorts across the country.”
Joyce said the program would launch in July, "will include anybody that has already been vaccinated (and) will apply to anybody that's vaccinated through to the end of 2021."
“We have a vested interest in this, we want to do everything we can to ensure the borders domestically open and stay open and that we get international up and running,” he explained.
The airline has consistently said that it will require all passengers to be vaccinated when it restarts international flights beyond New Zealand.
More Australians vaccinated means more potential travellers making bookings.
While the moves may not be entirely altruistic, I think both companies are to be commended for “putting their money where their mouth is” and not just relying on Government to provide support for the ailing sector.
It’s understood that vaccinated Australians will be able to claim their rewards and enter to win a mega-prize through the Qantas app from July.
Don’t be surprised to see if this coincides with the launch of the Qantas/Accor dual points earning (crossover) capability that was announced in November 2020 as part of a closer strategic relationship between the companies. This too was scheduled to launch mid-2021 and will be the first partnership of its kind between an airline and hospitality group in the Asia Pacific region.
Qantas and Accor have announced a deeper partnership that will see mutual members of their loyalty programs being able to double-dip for
rewards points in the APAC region.
The newly minted crossover feature is scheduled to launch mid-2021.
While similar to other crossover programs (eg Marriott and both Emirates and United; Shangri-La and Singapore Airlines; Hyatt and American Airlines), it will be the first partnership of its kind between an airline and hospitality group in the Asia Pacific region.
Will it be an attractive feature? Read on for our thoughts.