There are a multitude of airlines travelling to and from Australia, but only so many airlines are linked to Australian frequent flyer credit cards.
Australia's biggest airline, Qantas, is generally the most common airline you'll find connected to a frequent flyer card.
Your spending may earn you Qantas points for the Qantas Rewards program and will be linked to your Qantas frequent flyer account - meaning you'll need to be a member before you join. You may be able to earn bonus Qantas points upon signing up on some credit cards, which can be exchanged for complimentary Qantas flights and upgrades, Qantas Club lounge access and more.
Qantas frequent flyers can also exchange their Qantas points for any of the 15 linked airlines, including Jetstar, Air New Zealand, British Airways, Emirates Skywards, Cathay Pacific and more.
You can find Qantas frequent flyer credit cards from the big four banks, including NAB Qantas Rewards Signature card, Westpac Altitude Platinum Qantas card, ANZ frequent flyer black card or the CommBank Platinum Awards card to name a few. Qantas rewards can also be found in competitor banks, credit unions and online lenders, so you’re never too far from a Qantas rewards credit card provider.
Qantas’s budget offshoot, Jetstar, offers a standard Visa credit card for its Jetstar members that may help them to grow their frequent flyer points.
The Jetstar Visa Credit Card is the standard credit card product. Cardholders can earn Jetstar Dollars or Qantas Points on eligible purchases and these can be redeemed later as Jetstar travel vouchers or flights with Qantas and its partners.
The benefits of an affiliated Jetstar credit card may include:
- Earn Jetstar dollars. You may earn 1 Jetstar Dollar for every $200 spent.
- Qantas frequent flyer program. The Jetstar credit cards offer you the chance to clock up rewards with the Qantas Frequent Flyer program. You can redeem your points for flight rewards with Qantas and its airline partners and also have access to products from the Qantas store which includes Qantas Hotels and Qantas Insurance.
- Accessibility. Using a Jetstar Visa Credit Card may give you accessibility to over 30 million merchants in over 200 countries and about 1.5 million ATMs.
If you prefer to travel with Emirates, using an Emirates credit card can help you earn points (known as Emirates Skyward Miles) that can be redeemed for flight upgrades, airport lounge access, hotel accommodation or transport. Some credit cards with Emirates points also offer benefits such as complimentary travel insurance, and rental car insurance.
You can earn Emirate Skywards Miles in three ways:
- Flying with Emirates or partner airlines Air Mauritius, Alaska Airlines, easyJet, flydubai, GOL, Japan Airlines, Jet Airways, JetBlue, Jetstar, Korean Air, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, S7 Airlines, South African Airways, TAP Portugal and Virgin America.
- Making purchases with non-flight partners including InterContinental Hotels, Hertz, Citibank and others.
Etihad points is the currency of the Etihad frequent flyer program, Etihad Guest, one of the many frequent flyer programs on the market. It is similar to many other frequent flyer programs around the world and is aimed at rewarding travellers, shoppers and frequent flyers with benefits and other perks for your loyalty.
There are a range of different ways to collect Etihad points:
- Signing up to a credit card rewards program that allows you to collect points is one of the most popular ways to accumulate Etihad points.
- You can also collect points through travel by booking flights through Etihad and earning points as you fly. You can also earn points on selected partner airliners.
- Globe-trotters may be able to earn points on hotel bookings, restaurant reservations or international car rental as well.
Cathay Pacific points are earned through the Cathay Pacific Asia Miles program. Unlike other frequent flyer programs, there is no dedicated credit card available in Australia that will earn you Cathay Pacific Asia Miles specifically.
However, there are several Australian banks that offer credit cards with the Asia Miles program as a transfer partner. This means that you can “exchange" the reward points you have earned on your credit card for air miles, which can then be redeemed via the Cathay Pacific Asia Miles program.
Singapore Airlines points are benefits earned when you travel on Singapore Airlines or one of their partners. You can also earn points on eligible purchases made on an affiliated credit card. Airline points can be redeemed for free flights, travel upgrades and a variety of other deals across Singapore Airlines and their airline partners.
Several financial institutions offer credit cards with a Singapore Airlines rewards program, including ANZ and American Express. Singapore Airlines has 31 airline partners, including Virgin Australia, Virgin America, JetBlue, Alaska Airlines, SilkAir and Vistara.
Points can be earned in a number of ways:
- Accruing airline miles on Singapore Airlines flights
- Accruing airline miles through partner airlines
- On eligible purchases made on your credit card, e.g. hire cars or accommodation booked at one of Singapore Airlines’ hotel partners.
Malaysian Airlines offers an incentive program called Enrich. Members of Enrich are able to collect Malaysian Airlines points (or ‘Enrich Miles’), which can be used to book discounted flights on Malaysian Airlines and their One World Alliance airline partners. Members can also use their Enrich points for free excess baggage or access into airport lounges.
One of the easiest ways to build up points is through using a credit card with Malaysian Airlines points. There are several cards that can earn you Malaysian Airlines miles, such as an American Express credit card. The American Express card will reward you with Membership Rewards Points, which can be converted into Malaysian Airlines points.
Thai Airways has a customer loyalty points-based program called Royal Orchid Plus that provides members with a variety of travel benefits which increase in line with the number of points accrued.
One of the easiest ways to grow points is by having access to a credit card linked to the airline partner members of the Star Alliance, which includes Thai Airways and Thai Smile. These points can be accumulated and then converted into frequent flyer miles that can be used for travel with Thai Airways.