Is the Qantas Points Plus Pay competition worth entering?
The airline will refund points used on some Points Plus Pay bookings.
Qantas Points Plus Pay lets you use your Qantas Points to book seats on Qantas or Jetstar services. The advantage over Classic Rewards (the standard points option) is that you can book any seat that's for sale. The disadvantage is that you have to use many more Qantas Points to do so, which means it's tough to get maximum value from your points.
Right now Qantas is running a competition in which 100 passengers will win back the points they've spent on a Points Plus Pay flight. To enter, you need to register online, and then book a Points Plus Pay flight for travel between 1 February and 30 June 2019. The competition closes on 31 January 2019 (just a couple of days away as I write this), after which 100 eligible passengers will be randomly drawn.
If you're one of the customers drawn, you'll win back the points you spent on your flight, up to a maximum of 100,000. (If you happen to have booked multiple Points Plus Pay flights, you just get the points back for the highest-priced ticket.)
If you were planning on making a Points Plus Pay booking anyway – perhaps you want a flight on a route where Classic Reward seats never show up – then this is a tasty extra incentive. But I wouldn't be booking a seat just in order to enter, simply because Points Plus Pay doesn't offer as much value for your points as other options.
Our rule of thumb at Points Finder is that you want to get at least $20 in value for every 1,000 Qantas Points. That's really tough to do with Points Plus Pay.
"You only need 5,000 Qantas Points to make a Points Plus Pay flight booking with Qantas or 3,500 Qantas Points to make a Points Plus Pay flight booking with Jetstar," Qantas' entry form for the competition notes. This is true, but those points can be (relatively speaking) expensive.
For instance, I just looked up a sample Sydney to Melbourne flight. The sale fare is $185. If I use Points Plus Pay and offer up 5,000 Qantas Points, that fare drops to $152.52. I'm spending 5,000 points to save $32.48, which means I'm getting around $6.50 of value for each 1,000 Qantas Points.
The same applies on Jetstar. A $65 Sydney to Gold Coast fare drops to $44 if I spend 3,500 Qantas Points. That $21 saving gives me an effective points value of $6 per 1,000 Qantas Points.
I'd get more from my points by using them on an outright rewards seat, which costs 8,000 Qantas Points on each of those routes. Even after paying carrier charges and airport fees, more value would be on offer.
Every points-spending decision is individual, and the value you'll get will depend on the route you choose and the costs at the time. For myself, I'll be looking to buy seats in the current Qantas global sale before I started thinking about any Points Plus Pay options right now.
Angus Kidman's Findings column looks at new developments and research that help you save money, make wise decisions and enjoy your life more. It appears regularly on finder.com.au.
Pictures: Angus Kidman