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Australia’s Most Favoured and Best Frequent Flyer Programs Revealed


A new study by CreditCardCompare.com.au, a leading credit card comparison website, has revealed the best frequent flyer programs and rewards credit cards for Australians who love to travel. The research, which analysed data from over 5,000 Aussies, various frequent flyer programs and credit card providers, aimed to uncover the most valuable perks and benefits available to savvy travellers.

According to the study, frequent flyers can enjoy a range of amazing benefits, from free flights and upgrades to exclusive access to airport lounges. These programs can help travellers save money and make their journeys more enjoyable. However, the research also found that using a rewards credit card can significantly boost your frequent flyer points.

"Choosing the right rewards credit card can help you earn points faster and enjoy additional benefits like travel insurance and airport lounge access," said a spokesperson from Credit Card Compare Australia.

The study looked at various frequent flyer programs available in Australia, examining the benefits and rewards offered by each and any fees or restrictions to be aware of. Whether you're a business traveller who flies frequently for work or a leisure traveller who enjoys exploring new destinations, the research suggests there's a frequent flyer program that can cater to your needs.

So, what are the best frequent flyer programs and rewards credit cards for Australians? The results may surprise you.

1. Qantas Frequent Flyer

If you're a frequent flyer, you've probably heard of Qantas Frequent Flyer. It's one of the most popular frequent flyer programs in Australia, with over 13 million members.

One of the best things about the Qantas program is the ability to earn points not just on Qantas flights, but also on flights with over 35 partner airlines, including Emirates, American Airlines, and British Airways. This means you can earn points faster and use them for a variety of rewards, including flights, upgrades, and merchandise.

Another benefit of the Qantas program is the ability to earn status credits, which determine your membership level and come with perks like lounge access and priority boarding. Plus, Qantas offers a variety of credit cards that allow you to earn points on everyday purchases, making it easier to earn rewards even when you're not flying.

2. Velocity Frequent Flyer

If you are looking for a frequent flyer program that is easy to join and offers a range of benefits, then Velocity Frequent Flyer might be the right choice for you. As the loyalty program of Virgin Australia, Velocity Frequent Flyer allows you to earn points and status credits when you fly with Virgin Australia or one of its partner airlines.

One of the key advantages of Velocity Frequent Flyer is that membership is free, and you can start earning points and status credits as soon as you join. With over 70 program partners and over 200 e-Store partners, there are plenty of opportunities to earn points on everyday purchases, such as shopping, dining, and entertainment.

When it comes to flight redemptions, Velocity Frequent Flyer is one of the best programs available in Australia. You can redeem points for flights with Virgin Australia and its partner airlines, as well as upgrades, hotel stays, car rentals, and more. Plus, Velocity Frequent Flyer offers a range of other benefits, such as priority check-in, lounge access, and bonus points for Silver, Gold, and Platinum members.

3. Flybuys

If you're looking for a frequent flyer program that rewards you for your everyday spending, Flybuys might be the right choice for you. With Flybuys, you can earn points on your grocery shopping, petrol purchases, and more. Plus, you can redeem your points for flights, hotel stays, and other travel rewards.

One of the great things about Flybuys is that you can earn points at a variety of retailers, not just supermarkets. For example, you can earn Flybuys points when you shop at Target, Kmart, and Coles Express petrol stations. This means you can accumulate points faster and get closer to your next travel reward.

Flybuys also offers a range of redemption options, including flights with a number of airlines, hotel stays, and car rentals. You can even use your points to pay for your next holiday package. Plus, if you link your Flybuys account with your Velocity Frequent Flyer account, you can transfer your Flybuys points to Velocity Points and redeem them for flights with Virgin Australia and its partner airlines.

4. Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer

If you are a frequent flyer, you might want to consider joining Singapore Airlines' KrisFlyer program. It is one of the more useful frequent flyer programs in the region, offering a range of benefits and rewards to its members.

As a KrisFlyer member, you can earn miles when you fly with Singapore Airlines, Scoot, or one of their partner airlines. You can also earn miles when you spend with KrisFlyer partners across Singapore. These miles can be redeemed for rewards such as flights, upgrades, and hotel stays.

KrisFlyer also offers two tiers of elite status: KrisFlyer Elite Silver and KrisFlyer Elite Gold. These elite status tiers require 25,000 and 50,000 elite miles in 12 consecutive months, respectively. As an elite member, you can enjoy benefits such as priority check-in, lounge access, and bonus miles.

One of the advantages of KrisFlyer is the relative value of its miles. The carrier charges for award flights are generally lower than those of other airlines, making it easier to redeem your miles for flights. Additionally, KrisFlyer members have access to exclusive deals and privileges in Singapore and selected countries.

5. Emirates Skywards

If you frequently travel with Emirates and flydubai, you should consider joining Emirates Skywards. As a member, you can earn Skywards Miles for every eligible flight you take with Emirates, flydubai, and their partner airlines. You can redeem your Skywards Miles for flights, upgrades, hotel stays, car rentals, and more.

Emirates Skywards has four membership tiers: Blue, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. Each tier comes with its own set of benefits, such as priority check-in, lounge access, bonus Skywards Miles, and more. To qualify for a higher tier, you need to earn a certain number of Tier Miles or take a certain number of flights within a 12-month period.

One of the unique features of Emirates Skywards is its Family Membership program. With Family Membership, you can pool your Skywards Miles with up to 8 family members, making it easier to earn and redeem rewards together.

Emirates Skywards also offers a paid subscription program called Skywards+. With Skywards+, you can enjoy additional benefits such as bonus Skywards Miles, bonus Tier Miles, discounted upgrade rewards, and airport lounge access. Skywards+ has three subscription levels: Blue, Silver, and Gold.

6. Cathay Pacific Asia Miles

If you're looking for a frequent flyer program that offers great value for premium cabin awards, Cathay Pacific Asia Miles is definitely worth considering. It's the best way to book first and business class awards on Cathay Pacific, one of the world's best airlines.

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles is a member of the oneworld® alliance, which means you can earn and redeem miles on a range of airlines, including Qantas, American Airlines, and British Airways. You can also earn miles by spending with Cathay Pacific's partners, such as hotels, car rental companies, and credit card providers.

One of the great things about Cathay Pacific Asia Miles is that it has a generous award chart, which means you can often find great value when redeeming your miles. For example, a one-way first class award from Sydney to Hong Kong costs just 90,000 Asia Miles, whereas the same flight would cost 120,000 Qantas Points.

Another advantage of Cathay Pacific Asia Miles is that it offers a range of benefits to its members, such as priority check-in, boarding, and baggage handling. Plus, if you reach elite status, you can enjoy even more perks, such as lounge access and extra baggage allowance.

7. American Airlines AAdvantage

If you're a frequent flyer, you've probably heard of American Airlines AAdvantage program. It's one of the most popular loyalty programs in the world, with a massive flight network and a member of the Oneworld alliance.

With AAdvantage, you can earn and redeem miles for travel on American Airlines and its partner airlines, including some of the world's most luxurious carriers like Qatar Airways, Japan Airlines, and Cathay Pacific. You can also earn miles by spending with American, Oneworld partners, other select participating airlines, and over 1,000 non-airline partners.

One of the best things about AAdvantage is that you can earn elite status solely through Loyalty Points, which can be earned in many different ways, including flying. Once you become an elite member, you'll enjoy exclusive perks like priority check-in, boarding, and baggage handling, as well as complimentary upgrades and lounge access.

8. British Airways Executive Club

If you frequently fly with British Airways, joining the British Airways Executive Club is a must. It is a reward program that allows you to earn Avios points, which can be redeemed for flights, upgrades, hotels, and car rentals.

One of the best things about the British Airways Executive Club is that it is part of the oneworld alliance, which includes airlines such as American Airlines, Cathay Pacific, and Qantas. This means that you can earn and redeem Avios points on a multitude of airlines, giving you more flexibility and options for your travels.

As a member of the British Airways Executive Club, you can earn Avios points not just through flights, but also through hotel stays, car rentals, and everyday spending with the program's partners. Additionally, the program offers tiered membership levels, with each level offering its own set of benefits such as lounge access, priority check-in, and extra baggage allowance.

9. Air New Zealand Airpoints

If you frequently travel to or from New Zealand, Air New Zealand's Airpoints program is worth considering. As a member, you can earn Airpoints Dollars on all eligible Air New Zealand flights and many partner airline and Star Alliance flights. You can then use your Airpoints Dollars to book flights and OneUp upgrades.

Airpoints has three tiers: Silver, Gold, and Elite. The higher your tier, the more benefits you'll receive, such as lounge access, priority check-in, and extra baggage allowance. You can also earn Status Points, which determine your tier status, by flying with Air New Zealand or its partner airlines.

In addition to flights, you can earn Airpoints Dollars with Airpoints credit cards, hotels, car rentals, and retail partners. You can also use your Airpoints Dollars for purchases with Airpoints partners, such as rental cars and travel insurance.

10. United MileagePlus

If you're looking for a frequent flyer program with a wide range of benefits, United MileagePlus is worth considering. With over 100 million members, it is one of the world's largest frequent flyer programs.

One of the standout features of MileagePlus is the ability to earn and redeem miles on United Airlines flights as well as its Star Alliance partners. This means you can use your miles to book flights with any of the 26 Star Alliance member airlines, including Air Canada, Lufthansa, and Singapore Airlines.

MileagePlus also offers a range of other benefits, such as access to United Club lounges, priority boarding, and free checked bags. Additionally, members can earn miles through United's co-branded credit cards, as well as through partners such as hotels, car rental companies, and shopping portals.

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