Bankwest cuts rewards on credit cards

Sally McMullen 22 April 2016


Bankwest joins the list of banks cutting their rewards perks this year.

Things are looking for grim for rewards credit card holders in Australia. Bankwest has announced that the rewards earn rates on Bankwest Qantas World and Platinum cards will fall from June 20 2016.

How will the points earn rates change?

Card typeCurrent earn rate New earn rate
Bankwest Qantas World MasterCard1 point per $1 spent0.66 points per $1 spent
Bankwest Qantas Platinum Mastercard0.75 points $1 spent0.5 points per $1 spent

As you can see, the Bankwest Qantas World rewards value has dropped by 44%, whereas the Bankwest Qantas Platinum MasterCard has fallen in value by 25%.

So, how will this impact the rewards you can redeem? If you have a Bankwest Qantas Platinum MasterCard, you would need to spend over $10,000 to redeem $25 Harvey Norman voucher worth 7,700 points. Under the new system, you’ll need to spend $12,500 to earn the same amount.

If you were using the Bankwest Qantas World MasterCard, you could currently redeem an economy flight from Sydney to Melbourne worth 8000 Qantas Points if you spend $8,000 on your card. After 20 June, you will now need to spend $12,121 to redeem the same flight reward.

How will interest free days change?

The interest free offers on both of these cards will also reduce fall from 55 interest free days to 44 days as of 20 June. It’s important to note that your payment due date will fall 11 days earlier than your current due date, so you might need change your automatic payments accordingly if you want to take advantage of interest free days and stay on top of your balance.

At the moment, only existing Bankwest customers have been informed of these pending changes, with the website still reflecting the current earn rates.

As well as Commonwealth Bank, Citibank, ANZ and Virgin Money, Bankwest is just one of many Australian banks cutting rewards this year. These changes have been attributed to of RBA caps on interchange rates that are being enforced this year. The banks are struggling to recover from the interchange rate cuts, so reducing earn rates means they don’t have to put as much money into their rewards program or spend as much purchasing points from airlines. In this case, the lowered interest rate offer will help Bankwest earn more revenue from card users who are unable to repay their balance by the end of the statement period.

Unfortunately, these rate cuts mean that you might have to adjust your spending habits and points earning strategy or consider a new card if you want to maintain your current level of rewards.

If you’re a Bankwest cardholder and the major perk of your card is the rewards points, you might want to consider comparing some other rewards credit cards that’ll offer you more value.

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