For rewards both in the air and on the ground, you may want to think of Thai Airways.
The Royal Orchid Club is Thai Airways’ own frequent flyer club that allows you to earn Qualifying Miles when you fly with the airline. The more points you earn, the higher you advance in the Royal Orchid Plus membership ladder. There are three membership levels: Member, Silver, and Gold. Each of these levels offers specific benefits when flying with Thai and Star Alliance airlines.
After enrolling in the Thai Airways Orchid Club, the statuses of Silver and Gold can be met by accruing Qualifying Miles within three evaluation periods. Using this method of evaluation, members can enjoy the advantages of Silver or Gold status instantly after accruing enough miles. The statuses of Silver and Gold have a two-year validity.
Earn and transfer rewards with partner cards
Thai Airways points can be indirectly earned on American Express and Citibank credit cards, and then your points transferred across. If you'd like to earn points in Australia and then convert them, consider the credit cards below in your comparisons
American Express Credit Card Comparisons
Citibank Credit Card Comparisons
Levels for the Thai Airways Royal Orchid Club
- Entry-level status: After enrolment, entry-level status allows members to accumulate and redeem miles. Additionally, all members receive regular communications from Royal Orchid Plus.
- Silver status: This can be reached with Qualifying Miles from flying with Thai Airways and Star Alliance airlines in two specific periods of time. In a 12-month period, the accumulated miles should reach 10,000 and in a 24-month period, 15,000 Qualifying Miles are required. This is worked out automatically. With each new flight activity, the status is assessed in the previous 12 and 24-month period. To keep the Silver status within the date from which the current Silver validity began, eligible flights are assessed for the next 12 months to ascertain if the 10,000 Qualifying Miles had been reached. The same procedure is used throughout the complete 24-month Silver status period to ensure that the 15,000 Qualifying Miles have been gained.
- Gold status: This is acquired when Qualifying Miles are gained with Thai and Star Alliance airlines within two periods. At least 50,000 Qualifying Miles are required in a 12-month period, and 80,000 miles in 24 months. Flying 40 international segments on Thai in a 12 rolling month period gains Gold status too. All activity is calculated automatically and assessed in the previous 12 and 24-month period. As a new flight activity occurs, the status is evaluated for the previous 12 and 24 months, so no flights are missed.
- Platinum status: Platinum status is designed for the frequent flyer who flies with Thai only in Royal Silk Class and Royal First Class. To reach or keep Platinum status, 80,000 miles are needed, which includes class of service bonus miles, while flying on Thai in Royal Silk Class or Royal First Class, within each of the assessment periods, for 2 periods that are consecutive. Assessments are conducted automatically in each period, which is 12 consecutive months.
Earning Thai Airways miles
Thai and Star Alliance Airlines
On Thai-operated flights, for travel that has been paid for and is in most booking classes, miles can be earned, plus an extra class of service miles. For any Thai flights that are not as much as 500 miles, a 500-mile minimum is earned. Miles are earned depending on the fare paid, the class of your bought ticket, and the number of miles flown. For Economy Class, you only accumulate the actual miles flown, while with Premium Economy Class you are awarded 110% of miles flown. Royal Silk Class awards 125% of miles flown and Royal First Class 150% of miles flown. Star Alliance flights operate Economy Class, which attracts 100% of miles, Business Class which attracts 125% of miles, and First Class which accrues 150% of miles.
Thai and Star Alliance airlines have codeshare flights, and Royal Orchid Plus miles are gained depending on the class of travel paid for and booking class code of the airline that is used for the flight. Thai has codeshares with airlines that are not Royal Orchid Plus partners. As long as your booking is with Thai and the number on your ticket starts with 217, miles are earned depending on the class of service of the ticket and the eligible booking class codes with the airlines listed below. Thai and Malaysian flights, flying between Malaysia and Thailand, are codeshare flights. Thai and Emirates Airlines, flying only between Bangkok and Dubai, run codeshare flights. Thai and El Al Israel Airlines, flying between Bangkok and Tel Aviv, operate codeshare flights, but the operating carrier is El Al. Thai and Royal Brunei Airlines operate codeshare flights between Bangkok and Bandar Seri Begawan.
Royal Orchid Plus hotel partnerships can be found throughout the world. Each stay that qualifies can earn 750 miles, Miles can also be earned on money spent on hotel partners. Normally, online bookings or reservations made with the partner directly can earn miles. You should inquire if the rate you have paid entitles you to miles. With some hotel partners that do not have in operation a customer loyalty program, or membership, presenting the membership number of your Royal Orchid Plus membership and showing your card when checking-in will mean that miles will be placed in to your account.
Car rental partners
Royal Orchid Plus car rental partnership includes Budget, Avis and Hertz. A total of 250 to 500 miles can be earned, depending on the car rental period. It is normally the non-discounted car rental rates that earn miles. When making a reservation, you should check with your chosen car rental company whether you are eligible to earn any miles.
Credit card partners
A number of international banks have a credit card partnership with Royal Orchid Plus, depending on which country you reside. For example, American Express in many Asian countries, including Thailand, India, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines. Russia, Taiwan, New Zealand, and Australia have Citibank too. JCB and Sumitomo Mitsui in Japan.
Thai Airways has an innovative partnership with mobile phone companies throughout the world. All you have to do is to make sure your phone is connected to one of the mobile phone partners and you can start earning miles. You can earn miles by the minute for phone calls and by MBS for data. Partnerships exist in Asia, South America, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. The list of partnered mobile networks can be found on Thai Airway’s website.Back to top
Redeeming Thai Airways miles
Air Awards on Thai Airways
All Award Travel is for on one-way and roundtrip travel, and all segments have to be confirmed before tickets are issued. One stopover is permitted on each route between the starting point and the final destination. Backtracking is not permitted. As soon as Award travel reservations have been confirmed, tickets have to be collected within 30 days, or the reservations will be cancelled. It is possible for Award tickets to be issued on the spot at all of the Thai offices who have an online service. No less than 3 days before departure is needed for ticket issues at Thai offices that do not have an on-the-spot service. Award travel has to be completed no longer than 1 year after ticket issue.
Air Awards on Star Alliance Airlines
It is not only Thai Airways that offers Award travel; Star Alliance also offers Awards which can take the traveller to more than 1,000 destinations globally on Award. An Award with Star Alliance can be used with a single Star Alliance airline for Award travel that does not include Thai travel or with more than two Star Alliance airlines, including Thai. Requirements for Award mileage depend on the travel between one region and another. For example, return Awards for Economy Class flights between Bangkok and Berlin are for 80,000 miles. This is referred to as Zone A, which is Asia 1, to Zone H, which is Europe and North Africa. In this example, Award travel can take place with Thai from Bangkok to Frankfurt, and using Lufthansa from Frankfurt to Berlin.
Upgrade Awards on Thai Airways
This Award can be gained if your ticket indicates a Thai flight number on that sector that is to be upgraded, and if the class of the booking can be upgraded. Mileage upgrades are connected to the fare that was originally paid for. With Economy Class tickets in the Y/B/M booking class, the lowest miles are needed for upgrading to Royal Silk Class. With a paid for ticket in Premium Economy Class, Royal Silk Class upgrades are possible. Any upgrades from Royal Silk Class are to Royal First Class. Awards for mileage upgrades are possible at anytime after the issuing of the paid ticket as long as it is more than 24 hours before the scheduled departure time.
Upgrade Awards on Star Alliance Airlines
Star Alliance Upgrade Awards are available online for members of Royal Orchid Plus. A ticket has to be paid for and issued by your selected Star Alliance airline prior to a request for an upgrade. Upgrades are available for a Member or a Nominee. The passenger’s name has to be written on the ticket, which is to be issued by the carrier operating the flight. If the flight is on Lufthansa, the flight code and number will be LH701. If the flight shown is LH701, this means it is a codeshare flight, and an upgrade award is not permitted.
There are two categories of awards. Collection one is where Award stays are with partner hotels located in Thailand, Dubai, and Asia, and can be collected in certificate form. Collection 2 awards are with specific hotels located in Asia, Thailand, Dubai, Australia, New Zealand, North America, and the UK, and can be collected through 3 Award levels. Examples of hotels featured as collection 2 awards are the Langham hotels in China, USA and the UK, and the Novotel in Hong Kong and Korea. The Pullman Phuket Arcadia, as an example, attracts 14,000 mile.
Excess baggage awards
This is another way to redeem miles. If leaving Bangkok on Thai, it is possible to pay for any excess baggage by using Royal Orchid Plus miles for excess baggage that is 10 kilos or more over the permitted weight. At the Bangkok airport check-in and 2 hours before the flight’s departure, calculate the excess baggage weight and visit Thai’s Customer Service. Miles can instantly be taken out of your account. It is also possible to redeem miles for a nominated person too. You have to be at the check-in in order to give permission to have the mileage deducted from your own account.
Lounge access awards
It is possible to access the Royal Silk lounges at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport by redeeming miles if you have Member or Silver membership of Royal Orchid Plus. When leaving from Bangkok on a Thai International or domestic flight, show your Royal Orchid Plus card and boarding pass to the lounge staff and instantly redeem. Royal Silk Lounge which can be used for domestic flights operated by Thai is in Concourses A. International flight Royal Silk lounges for Thai Passengers are in Concourses C and E. A maximum of two redemptions for lounge access are permitted for members and a single guest, as long as both are going on exactly the same flight operated by Thai.
Thai shop awards
You can buy a variety of products at the THAI Shop, and selected items can be redeemed using Royal Orchid Plus miles. These include aircraft models, sports items, key chains, bags, umbrellas, garments, and ceramics.
"SAWASDEE”, Thai’s inflight magazine; Time; Fortune Magazines; Thai language magazines including Cheewajit and Ban Lae Suan; National Geographic; Health and Cuisine; Elle; Room Anywhere; Food of Life, Honeymoon and Travel; Gourmet and Cuisine; Modern Mom; Lonely Planet Traveler; Reader's Digest; and Marketeer are only available to members living in Thailand for only 5,000 miles.
Thai Catering has over and over again proved its worth as one of the world's best providers of services to passengers, which includes superb food, both during flights and at restaurants. Thai Catering awards are worth 1,500 miles for a 200 THB Thai Catering voucher. You can redeem some of your miles to partake in tasty meals at Thai’s restaurant, Yellow Orchid, at Suvarnabhumi Airport. A 200 THB meal requires 1,500 miles, while a 5,000 THB meal will require 30,500 miles.
The Major Cineplex Group operates entertainment throughout Thailand. By redeeming 4,000 miles, you can purchase a 400 THB karaoke ticket.Back to top
You don’t have to fly miles to gain miles. You can purchase them, too! 1,000 miles costs 1,200 THB or $40, while 30,000 miles costs 36,000 THB or US$1,200.
Royal Orchid plus service fee
Service fees can be paid in Thailand using Thai Baht (THB). In most other countries, USD is the usual currency for paying service fees although local currencies can be used too. Some service fees can be paid using miles. These service fees apply to re-credit or change requests for Award Certificates or Award Tickets or changes to a Nominee’s name. Service fees applicable to re-credit Air Awards that have been re-ticketed on Thai and Star Alliance are 3,750 THB or US$125 or 10,000 miles, and the service fee for a name change of a Nominee if paid at Thai is 3,750 THB or US$125 or 10,000 miles.
You can also redeem Awards for friends, family or any other person after he or she has been included as your Award Nominee. Those who are eligible are the person or persons you nominate, which can include a maximum of 5 names. Names may be added or altered, too. Every change performed online is 7,500 miles. If done at a Thai office, all changes are 10,000 miles each or 3,750 THB or US$125. Your list of Award Nominees may be accessed at ‘Manage Your Account’ through the use of your personal membership number with its PIN code.
As one the leading flag carrier airlines in the world, Thai Airways flies to 78 destinations in 35 countries, using a fleet of more than 80 aircraft. If you frequently fly with Thai Airways, you may want to apply for the Royal Orchid Club to take advantage of points and be rewarded for your loyalty.Back to top