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    I actually stumbled upon this a couple of years ago. Air NZ were running late to Sydney and threw me onto Qantas, so I kept the boarding pass wondering if it might be useful one day.


    At a later date, I wanted to fly MKY-CNS and VA would fly me backwards to Brisbane then up to Cairns for $$$ whereas QF offered a much cheaper hopper flight up to CNS. I actually missed that flight by 1 minute thanks to taxi man. I remember being angry the check-in agent had asked if I had any status with Qantas, which I didn’t at the time. (Like ‘what did that have to do with anything?!’ I thought. The plane is either here or not and I can get on or not). And yes, I argued with her over the 1 minute as my watch said I had 1 minute on my side but she pointed at the wall clock which said I was 1 minute late! Fuming!! I called Qantas and the agent was super nice, rebooking me for a lesser fee. Wait time wasn’t even long. After I got over the burn I eventually signed up with Qantas via a link to avoid the $50 joining fee and submitted my previous boarding passes. My relationship with Qantas was now official.


    Later I was thinking about Qantas and decided it was worth buying Qantas club membership thinking it would be just like my previous Koru membership where I could fly with an extra bag. Of course, running late for the next plane, tired, I was slammed with an extra baggage fee because I hadn’t read through all the T&C which stated it was just extra weight I was allowed and I was over that. The icing on the cake that day? Sitting on this little Q400 exhausted, feeling sorry for myself and …… finding the rental car keys in my pocket!!! We were still on the ground but the door had closed and they wouldn’t open it. One of 2 times I’m ashamed to say!


    Of course I did this all wrong. I had seen the Qantas status match offered previously but was on holiday at the time and thought I was fine flying VA. Later I discovered I wasn’t so happy with VA after all. I should have signed up at the time as I had nothing to lose.


    Later again I remember lying on my bed and thinking ‘I know I’ve missed the status match but, wonder if I just email them and ask. It hasn’t been that long since the status match offer expired’. Ok it had been a few months. I sent a covering email to [email protected], a picture of my Air NZ card and I think 6 -12 months of statements. Overkill on the statements but the burn of an excess bag fee when I had just bought Qantas Club membership and the annoying thought that status could have let me onto that flight and saved me change fees? I really wanted that match!


    I was in Melbourne and had the flu, laid up in bed when Qantas called. I’d forgotten about my email. They asked a lot of questions. Lots about why there wasn’t much VA activity on my statement. I laughed. I said ‘I give them my card all the time, they tell me my NZ number is in the booking and then it NEVER shows up! Then I have to wait 2 weeks to apply for a retro claim and then chase them up again! All for the princely sum of …. 3APD & 0SP. Ha!’ I told them I was sick of that process so I gave up on it. They laughed, they understood.


    Anyway, the call ended and maybe 1-2 days later they called back offering me a platinum challenge. I told them I only wanted gold. I didn’t think I could maintain platinum but they wouldn’t budge. I think this was due to the fact I had a little bit of history flying with them, some forward bookings, a strong NZ history along with the fact I actually flew their routes (albeit with NZ and VA). It meant I’d shown some sort of commitment and potential value to Qantas. I already had a couple of trips lined up to Perth. QF AKL-MEL-PER return in J earns 320sc. Nailed the challenge within 3 weeks. My previous flying didn’t count towards the challenge in particular but would count towards overall status credit count. I did have to call a couple of times to have the status change applied. That occurred maybe 2-3 wks after the challenge. I basically skipped gold.


    I then only needed 1200sc to retain platinum which I really didn’t think I’d reach but it happened. It’s made travel easier especially in economy. And I can finally travel with 2 bags :).

    What happened to my paid Qantas Club membership? Apparently they put those on hold until you need it! I think I have 9 months left on that.


    So if anyone is thinking about adding Qantas to your frequent flyer programmes – the tier accelerator offer is definitely a good starting point.

    A few other points to note:

    – Double status credit offers don’t count towards this. I’ve read one report of this.

    – Qantas may actually decline to offer you the challenge. The ball is totally in their court.

    – It’s up to Qantas if they offer you gold or platinum, so no howling if you don’t get the match you want.

    Steve Biddle


    I’m aware of NZ doing some similar things for selected FFers as well – but you have to ask and it will only be a challenge.



    I’ve probably read of 3 or 4 reports of NZ status matching from Qantas, and they even gave 1 guy the RUs! It’s a good move for snatching each others flyers for the companies. I had suspected ausbt had run the article again due to the NZ/VA split. Dynamics between the 3 airlines are complicated and obviously Oz has population numbers to fight over. NZ is small by comparison but that TT traffic is worth while!

    Anyway the article brought up a few painful memories of how I ended up with Qantas. I don’t have any regrets and it’s good having other options.


    Sometimes J with VA (flew NZ to MEL) or QF has been cheaper than NZ PE AKL-PER and I’ve come to prefer PER-xxx-AKL with QF lie flat for a better price than NZ J on the route. There’s some down sides to transiting but overall that’s my preferred choice but I’ll still fly NZ home some times. However the early morning arrival leaves me feeling a bit off.


    For anyone wanting to take on the Qantas challenge AKL-SYD-DPS on a sale J fare nets 400sc return. A sale fare can run around $2500-2600NZD return. That’s good value at $6.5/sc. Especially for a double status credit run but SYD-DPS is a 737. There’s a few tricks to Qantas!

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