On Straight To The Points, I share great business and first class award flight opportunities to help you use your miles and points via my private Award Alerts newsletter. Today, I wanted to share a recent alert for Qantas first class with readers of God Save The Points. Keep in mind that some of the dates are no longer available – especially for 4 people.
To receive alerts about business and first class award space for 2, 4 or even 8 people that you can book with miles, make sure you sign up for Award Alerts. Right now, these alerts are focused on awards to/from the U.S. and Canada.
Now, let’s get into it!
Qantas First Class Award Space For 2 People
Yes, I know I that it’s only been a few weeks since I sent a newsletter about Qantas first class award space, but I’m sure someone is looking for flights for the Christmas/New Year’s timeframe so forgive me.
A couple of days ago, Qantas announced big changes to its loyalty program including more award space… and higher redemption rates. Honestly, the increases weren’t terrible – not that the rates were that great to start – and Qantas also announced reduced fees on award tickets.
These changes don’t take go into effect until September, but I was what award space looked like since there’s a 20% Amex transfer bonus to Qantas right now. Oddly enough, an STTP subscriber Michael was also curious and jumped at the chance to book 2 seats during the winter holidays.
Since everyone wants to visit Australia during its summer and our winter, I figured I’d share the dates with space for 2 in first class on Qantas — and a couple of dates with space for 4 people if you’re sitting on a bunch of Membership Rewards points.
Straight to the points:
Routes: LAX-MEL/SYD, DFW-SYD
Operating airline: Qantas
Class of service: First Class
Dates: December 2019
Seats available: 2 (occasionally 4)
Cabin layout: 1-1-1
Book with (per person, one-way):
- Qantas Frequent Flyer: 144,000 points from LAX (120,000 Amex points during 20% transfer promo); 168,000 points from DFW (140,000 Amex points during promo)
Taxes/fees (per person):
- One-way: ~$340
- Round-trip: ~$680
Bank transfer partners:
- American Express – Qantas
- Citi – Qantas
- Capital One – Qantas
For those who have been reading my newsletter for a while, you know how much I loved my Qantas first class experience. Lots of space, great service and a solid meal all the way to Australia without a stop in Asia — not that I have any problem with that either.
The toughest part has often been that there isn’t award space during the time people want to visit Australia the most — summertime. When it’s winter for those of us in the northern hemisphere, Australia enjoys some amazing weather. I spent 10 days in Sydney and Brisbane in December 2017 and almost skipped my flight home. It’s that nice.
Let’s take a look at the dates you can use Qantas points to book 2 and 4 people. Unsurprisingly, there’s more space for 2 but you can always split a group of 4 on back to back days. I’ll add that you can sometimes find 2 flights with space for 2 on the LAX-SYD route so that could work too.
If you want return space from Australia, it’s going to be a bit tougher unless you’re cool with spending the first 2 weeks there. Personally, that wouldn’t bother me one bit.
If you’re booking round-trip, don’t forget that you can always return to a different city. So, if you fly out of DFW, you can return to LAX or MEL.
Dates You Can Book
Note: At this point, the dates with space for 4 are almost entirely tapped.
December: 21, 27, 28
December: 15, 17, 19-22, 26-29
No return space. 🙁
December: 20, 28
December: 15-18, 20-23, 25-29
December: 13, 14
January: 13-15, 17-22, 24, 25
December: 15, 18, 19, 22, 25, 26, 28, 29
January: 19, 25
December: 13-15, 19, 20, 22
January: 16-20, 22-25
Best Ways To Book
Why book Qantas first for 120K Amex Membership Rewards points instead of 110k American miles or 70K Alaska miles? Well, it’s quite simple really. Qantas hasn’t released this space to partners. So, that answers that.
When you think about it, 120K Amex points isn’t terrible. If you want to transfer Citi ThankYou Points to Qantas, you’ll need to transfer 144k points. With Capital One, you’d need to transfer 192K points to Qantas.
Amex transfers also process just about instantly (did it myself the other day to book an El Al flight) while Citi and Capital One transfers can take 24-48 hours.
Surcharges are what they are, but I wouldn’t be crying about a few hundred bucks to fly Qantas first class to Australia.
Booking is pretty easy.
- Set up a Qantas account if you haven’t already
- Log in
- From the home page, enter your search criteria
- From the calendar results, select the class of service and hit the Go button
- Select your preferred date to travel and hit the Continue button
- Now, you’ll see your flight options
- Transfer points to your Qantas account (Amex is ideal)
- Run the search process again once the points are in your account
- Pay the taxes/fees and you’re all set
If you’re new to Sydney, here are some great ideas for your first trip and here’s a great breakdown of what you can do in 48 hours — though I’m sure you’ll spend more time there. If you find your way to Melbourne, here’s a great guide to get you started. If you’re coffee-obsessed, here are 10 spots in Melbourne you won’t want to miss.
Let me know if you book or if there’s a particular flight or destination you’d like me to include in an Award Alerts Newsletter!