Media Release

New way to earn Qantas Points

  • Qantas Frequent Flyer members have a new way to earn points
  • More competition expected: debit card use set to overtake credit card market
  •’s top ways to milk your rewards points

April 22, 2014, Sydney – Members of the Qantas Frequent Flyer program now have a new way to earn points and according to one of Australia's biggest comparison websites [1], it couldn’t have come at a better time.

Recent changes have made it harder for some of the almost 10 million members to earn Qantas Points, with the amount of points earned on flights now dependent on the amount of money members spend rather than the kilometres they fly.

The Qantas Transaction Account from Bankwest is the first to earn Qantas Points, based on the account balance (12 points per month per $100) and transactions made using the debit card (five points per eligible transaction).

Michelle Hutchison, Money Expert at, said that she expects more financial institutions to offer transaction accounts with rewards.

“We won't be surprised if more financial institutions follow Bankwest's lead and adapt credit card rewards for transaction accounts because we're seeing more demand for credit cards with rewards programs. In fact, the number of Australians searching for rewards credit cards on has almost doubled in the past year.

“Australians are also shopping with their own money at a faster growth rate than credit card use. So it’s likely that rewards programs will have a new market with transaction accounts.”

An analysis of Reserve Bank data by found almost double (93 percent) the number of debit card purchases and 74 percent more money spent on debit card purchases in the past five years. In February 2014 alone, Australians made about 273 million debit card purchases worth over $15 billion.

Compared to credit cards, Australians made just 39 percent more purchases and 32 percent more money spent on purchases. However, credit card use is still dominant with 151 million credit card purchases in February worth over $21 billion.

Growth rate of debit card and credit card purchases – February 2009-February 2014

Number of purchasesValue of purchases
Debit cards+93%+74%
Credit cards+39%+32%

Source:, Reserve Bank of Australia, 2009 - 2014

Use this table on your website:

Mrs Hutchison said that as financial institutions come out with more reward offers, it’s important for Australians to compare their options to find the best value.

“Debit card use is set to overtake credit cards, which will open up the market for financial institutions to offer more incentives to sign up.

“We’re already seeing other innovative incentives for transaction accounts, such as ING Direct’s Orange Everyday account which gives account holders 5 percent back on every PayWave purchase under $100 for a limited time.

“It’s can be really good value to take advantage of these rewards offers but you need to know how to make the most of them.”’s top six ways to milk rewards points:

    • Do your research. Take a look at your options online using a comparison site like to research the latest offers, rewards programs and sign up incentives to make sure you’re getting the best deal. Some credit cards also offer exclusive deals and unique offers that are only available on
    • Be generous. Volunteer to purchase group presents for weddings and birthdays and then use your card to earn more points. Make sure you have them pay you back so you’re not out of pocket and don’t pay interest on a credit card.
    • Offer up your card. The same rule applies for group dinners. Offer to put the bill on your credit or debit card and have your friends pay you back.
    • Put your expenditures on your card. Use your card to pay for budgeted monthly expenditures like groceries, as a lot of small purchases can add up quickly.
    • Shop with partners. Most frequent flyer or rewards programs let you earn more points when you shop with certain retailers, which is a great way to earn extra points for things you’re already buying.
    • Manage your account balance. If you’re using a Rewards Transaction Account then you should aim to keep your balance high in order to earn more rewards, whereas you will want to pay off your balance in full for a Rewards Credit Card to avoid excessive interest.

[1] is top 3 financial comparison website based on traffic recorded by Experian Hitwise, Q1 2014


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