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Qantas partners with Zip so you can fly now, pay later


As always, there are tons of points up for grabs – but is it worth the risk?

Qantas customers can quite literally fly now and pay later after the flying kangaroo partnered up with buy now, pay later (BNPL) service Zip.

The new payment option takes effect from today, with frequent flyers able to earn Qantas Points through Zip's own loyalty program Zip Rewards.

How does it work?

Qantas customers will be able to use Zip Pay or Zip Money at the checkout on for domestic and international flights departing from Australia. You simply select Zip as a payment option, instead of credit card or POLI.

Zip or Zip Pay is accepted in over 26,000 stores across the country, and lets you buy things immediately and pay for them later in either weekly, fortnightly or monthly instalments. That's as long as you meet the monthly minimum payment.

A monthly account fee of $7.95 applies, but is waived so long as you pay your balance in full by the due date.

For instance, if you buy a flight on 1 June using Zip and you pay it off entirely by 31 July, you'll pay no fees. But if you pay it off a week later, you'll pay $7.95. For every month a balance remains due, you'll pay $7.95 until it's fully repaid.

How many points will you earn?

There are 3 main ways for Qantas Frequent Flyers to earn Qantas Points under the new partnership:

  • Earn 3,000 points when you sign up and link your QFF and Zip accounts, and complete your first Zip transaction.
  • Earn 500 points every time you reach your Zip Rewards goal (or choose $20 Zip cashback).
  • Earn 1 point for every $3 spent on eligible Qantas flights.

Can you still earn Points on the flight itself if you pay with Zip?

Yes, Qantas Loyalty CEO Olivia Wirth confirmed that not only will you earn 1 point for every $3 spent on flights as part of the partnership, you'll also earn your regular points on the flights themselves.

"While our 14 million frequent flyers all have different spending habits and payment preferences, we know that financial services are one of the most popular ways to earn points," she said.

"Being able to earn points on buy now, pay later purchases through Zip Rewards when shopping online or in-store is something that will appeal to many of our members."

So far so good... are there any risks of BNPL flights?

Just because you can use BNPL for your flights, it doesn't necessarily mean you should. While BNPL services like Zip and Afterpay can be another option for paying for things, you can be stung with late fees.

A report by ASIC in 2020 suggested that 1 in 5 Australians who used a BNPL service ended up paying fees.

"I'm all for the chance to earn extra Qantas points, so I like the fact that you can earn extra points with this. And if you were planning on paying for your flights immediately using cash anyway, this could be a great way to pay for your flights and earn extra points," said Sarah Megginson, an expert of frequent flyer rewards and Finder's senior editor for money.

"But there are definitely risks of using BNPL. I worry that people will see $7.95 as such a small price to pay in order to 'kick the can down the road' another month, so they won't be diligent with repayments. All of those fees add up. If you buy a $1,000 fare you can't really afford, and it takes you 9 months to pay it off, you'll end up paying $63.80 in monthly fees. If you have a few different BNPL payments going at once, you could end up paying hundreds of dollars in unnecessary fees."

Want to earn more frequent flyer points? Check out the latest credit card sign-up deals.

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