Will It Help You Get Big Travel Now That Citi ThankYou Points Transfer to Australia’s Qantas Airways?

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Citi has added Australia’s largest airline as the newest transfer partner to their Citi ThankYou points program.

You can now transfer Citi ThankYou points to Qantas at a 1:1 ratio.  So they now have 11 airlines (plus Hilton hotels) to choose from.

Just last month, Citi added Virgin Atlantic as a partner, so they’re expanding to compete with other transferable points programs like Chase Ultimate Rewards and American Express Membership Rewards.

But there are very few situations where transferring points to Qantas would make sense.  That’s because their award chart is expensive compared to most other airlines, and they add fuel surcharges!

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

Is Transferring Citi ThankYou Points to Qantas a Reason to Jump for Joy?

Let’s have a quick look at Qantas’ frequent flyer program and see if it’s worth transferring points.

What’s the Deal?

Link:   Citi ThankYou Qantas Point Transfer

You can transfer Citi ThankYou points to Qantas at a 1:1 ratio, in 1,000 point increments.  There’s no fee to move your points, but it can take up to 14 days (though they’ll debit your ThankYou account immediately).

Qantas points can be used for flights on Qantas, their low-cost subsidiary Jetstar Airways, oneworld alliance airlines, and other partners like Emirates.

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

Use Points to Fly on Qantas, oneworld Airlines, or Partners Like Emirates

They have separate award charts for their own flights (plus Jetstar Airways and a few others) and flights on oneworld and partner airlines.  It’s a little confusing!

Is It Worth Transferring Points to Qantas?

Link:   Qantas Award Charts

Link:   Qantas Partners

Qantas has separate award charts for their own flights (plus Jetstar Airways and a few others) and flights on oneworld and partner airlines.

And they add big fuel surcharges to their award tickets!  Although they recently announced they’ll be reducing the fuel surcharges on both paid and award tickets.

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

Be Prepared to Pay Fuel Surcharges If You Book Award Tickets With Qantas Points

Like British Airways, Qantas uses a distance-based award chart.  So the number of points required for an award ticket depends on the distance flown.

Flights on some partner airlines (like American Airlines and US Airways) are included on the Qantas award chart, while others are included on the partner award chart.  And the prices are different!

Here’s the award chart for flights on Airnorth, Air Vanuatu, American Airlines, Emirates, Fiji Airways, Jetstar Airways, Qantas, QantasLink, and US Airways.

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

The Qantas Award Charts Are Divided Into Zones Based on Distance, Much Like British Airways

This is the award chart for flights on other oneworld alliance partner airlines.  Note that the prices are marginally more expensive.

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

Award Tickets on Other oneworld Partner Airlines Are Slightly More Expensive

But if you’re booking a ticket that includes 2 or more oneworld partners (but not non-oneworld partner airlines), there’s a different award chart.  And it’s priced for round-trip tickets instead of 1-way.

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

If Your Itinerary Includes 2 or More oneworld Partner Airlines, Use THIS Chart Instead

The award charts appear much more expensive than other distance based programs like British Airways.

That said, their short-haul coach tickets could be a cheaper option than booking award tickets using points from a zone-based program, like American Airlines.  But the taxes, fees, and fuel surcharges could make it not worth it.

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

Short-Haul Flights, Like Some Within Australia, Could Be a Good Deal With Qantas Points – but Not As Good As Using British Airways Avios Points

It might be worth using Qantas points if you really want to travel on 1 of their more obscure partners, like Airnorth.

Or if you want to fly Qantas from the US to Australia, you might be better off spending the extra Qantas points.  That’s because they don’t make a lot of award seats available to partner airlines!

For example, a 1-way coach award ticket from Los Angeles to Sydney would cost:

  • 37,500 American Airlines miles, or
  • 48,000 Qantas points

Remember to factor in the cost of fuel surcharges to see if it’s worth it for you.  And I wouldn’t transfer Citi ThankYou points to Qantas without knowing that award seats are available.

Note:  Other transferable points, like Chase Ultimate Rewards or American Express Membership Rewards, do NOT transfer to Qantas.

Do Citi ThankYou Points Now Help You Get to Australia?

Maybe.  It depends on:

  • If you have points or miles in other programs, like United Airlines (which might be cheaper or have more available award seats)
  • Whether you can find available award seats on Qantas for your desired class of service (Business and First Class can be trickier to find), and if you don’t mind paying more miles and fuel surcharges
  • How badly you want to fly Qantas, and how many miles or points you’re willing to spend with any program
New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

Looking for a Lie-Flat First Class Award Seat? It Will Cost You (and Might Be Hard to Find!)

Let’s go back to our Los Angeles to Sydney example.  Using Qantas points for a 1-way award ticket, you’ll pay:

  • 48,000 points in coach, plus fuel surcharges
  • 96,000 points in Business Class, plus fuel surcharges
  • 144,000 points in First Class, plus fuel surcharges

Using American Airlines miles (which are easier to earn for most folks), you’ll pay:

  • 37,500 miles in coach (no fuel surcharges)
  • 62,500 miles in Business Class (no fuel surcharges)
  • 72,500 miles in First Class (no fuel surcharge)

And on United Airlines it costs:

  • 40,000 miles in coach (no fuel surcharges)
  • 70,000 miles (80,000 miles on partner airlines) in Business Class (no fuel surcharges)
  • 80,000 miles (130,000 miles on partner airlines) in First Class (no fuel surcharges)

You can also use Delta and Alaska Airlines miles to get from the US to Australia, often without fuel surcharges.

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

You’ll Pay Fewer Miles (and No Fuel Surcharges) Using United Airlines to Australia

So in general, you’ll pay fewer miles with other airline programs to get to Australia.  And you usually won’t pay the fuel surcharges that Qantas adds.  As long as you can find available award seats, other airline miles are a better deal.

Plus, there aren’t many ways to earn Qantas points.  But there are lots of ways to earn American Airlines, United Airlines, and other airline miles, like credit card sign-up bonuses and spending or transferring points from Chase Ultimate Rewards or American Express Membership Rewards.

Which Cards Earn Citi ThankYou Points?

Link:   Citi ThankYou

Link:   My Review of Citi ThankYou Transferrable Points Cards

If you have the Citi ThankYou PremierCiti Prestige, or the (no longer available) Citi Chairman card, you can transfer Citi ThankYou points to partner airlines and hotels.  

And having 1 of those cards lets you transfer the Citi ThankYou points you earn with cards like the Citi ThankYou Preferred or Citi ThankYou Preferred for College Students to partner airlines and hotels too! 

New Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner Qantas Worth It Or Not

You Can Transfer Citi ThankYou Points to Partner Airlines If You Have the Citi ThankYou Premier, Citi Prestige, or Citi Chairman Card

Now that they’ve added Qantas, you can now transfer Citi ThankYou points to 11 airlines (plus Hilton hotels).  And all 3 major airline alliances (Star Alliance, oneworld, and SkyTeam) are represented:

I’m still hoping that Citi will add more US airlines to the list (like American Airlines!).

Bottom Line

You can now transfer Citi ThankYou points to Qantas at a 1:1 ratio.  It can take up to 14 days, and there are no fees to transfer points.

Qantas’ award charts are generally more expensive than other airlines, so for most folks this won’t be a good deal.  And they add fuel surcharges to their award tickets.

But if you really want to fly Qantas (or 1 of their airline partners), and can’t find available award seats using other airline miles, this could be an option for you.

It’s always good news when Citi ThankYou adds airlines to their list of transfer partners.  I hope they continue this trend.

Will you consider transferring Citi ThankYou points to Qantas, or are their award tickets too expensive?

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2 responses to “Will It Help You Get Big Travel Now That Citi ThankYou Points Transfer to Australia’s Qantas Airways?

  1. They need to add American as a transfer partner. Then I will sit up and pay attention. For now I’m yawning and snoozing.

  2. I agree with DaveS. There are only so many slots in my wallet, and until TYPs are transferable to AA, i won’t be adding any citi premiere or prestige cards.