Airlines thrive when customers book with them, and many times customers book with airlines because of their established points. The more points a customer can accumulate, the greater the rewards – right? Well, that’s not always the case.
Across various airlines, points systems and rewards strive to provide the best for customers, but, unfortunately, the valuable points earned by individuals are not always put to the best use.
Qatar Airways’ point system is part of the Qatar Airways Privilege Club. But to become a member of the Privilege Club, you have to rack up Qmiles, the reward miles, which are earned by a member and their nominated family member whenever they fly via Qatar Airways, Oneworld Alliance airlines, and other airline partners. There are four tiers of membership in the points system and, as you accumulate miles, you move up the ladder. From the lowest to the top, the memberships are burgundy, silver, gold, and platinum.
Though there are perks that come with the accumulation of Qatar Airways points, there are certain things you can and can’t use points for. So, what’s the deal with your points? ILQ takes a deeper look so you can score the most with your valuable points!
Membership benefits include a 25% mileage bonus per family member on flights eligible for earning Qmiles, as well as priority stand-by if your preferred Qatar Airways flight is full. Apart from in-air perks, while on ground members can shop and pay with Qmiles at Qatar Duty Free and Oryx Galleria using their points to shop till they drop! Also, members have the award seat. Award seats on Qatar Airways during high demand periods can be purchased in exchange for double Qmiles when making an award booking online.
Silver members can enjoy the benefits of burgundy membership, and the award seat, as well as much more! These members can enjoy the use of the lounge, business class check-in, increased baggage allowance, etc. Silver enables one to enjoy a 25% mileage bonus on flights by Qatar Airways and a 50% mileage bonus per family member on flights eligible for earning Qmiles. Alongside this, members receive priority check-in at Hamad International Airport (HIA), which can decrease the amount of time you wait in those long airport lines!
Another perk that distinguishes silver from burgundy is the reservation benefit. Silver members can access and reserve seats located at the front section of the economy class cabin when booking up to 72 hours before departure. Other benefits include a personalized membership card and a digital membership card. There are also personalized baggage tags that ensure your baggage is easily recognized among the tons of bags on the belt.
The third tier membership is Gold. Exclusive membership benefits include access to the lounge, First Class check-in, increased baggage allowance, guaranteed award seats, etc. Membership benefits include a tier bonus which is a 75% mileage bonus on flights marketed and operated by Qatar Airways which are eligible for earning Qmiles. Family mileage also entails 100% mileage bonus per family member on both QA and non-QA flights. Qcredits are also given for the Gold-tier members.
Members can use these credits for upgrades, excess baggage and more. Airport benefits include priority check-ins in dedicated counters, and business class counters, priority stand-by or wait-list, an additional 15 kg baggage allowance or one extra piece when flying with QA. In addition to this, members also enjoy Al Maha Services ‘Meet and Greet’ service when they arrive, depart, or transfer through HIA. Members can also choose a guest to benefit from this service at no charge – provided they’re traveling with them.
The top tier is Platinum, and it’s been exclusively customized for more exciting rewards! Membership benefits are almost the same as that of Gold, but for the Qcredits, instead of 40, platinum members receive 60 Qcredits which can be redeemed for various upgrades and excess baggage allowance.
There’s also no Qmiles expiration provided that the member retains the Platinum tier at the time of each Qmiles expiry period. Airport Benefits include priority check-ins, like that of the Gold-tier membership, along with priority stand-by (wait-list). Excess baggage allowance is at 20 kg. Lounge access, on the other hand, entitles members to bring two guests. Members also receive five guest passes per year to invite additional guests to join them at the lounge in Doha. They enjoy priority boarding where available too. Members of the Platinum tier also enjoy Al Maha Services ‘Meet and Greet’ service when they arrive, depart, or transfer through HIA, and can also choose two guests to benefit from this service at no charge, provided they’re traveling with them.
So, what does it all mean?
Mentioned above were just some of the benefits each membership tier can enjoy. To discover more of these point perks in greater depth, click here.
With all these overwhelming privilege club membership rewards, there are corresponding terms and conditions which don’t fully extend the membership rewards privilege to its maximum potential.
For example, Qmiles and Qcredits have an expiration date – so if you don’t use them, you lose them. Furthermore, members need to be frequent flyers to enjoy the benefits of the different tiers, and spend more if they plan to upgrade on upper-tier levels. One of the most upsetting ‘point privileges’ is that lounge access is restricted for tickets that are bought under promotional fares, so you have to pay the full, non-discounted ticket to enjoy the lounge and its services if you use points to upgrade your ticket.
For award benefits, discounts are only for Gold and Platinum members, and only for non-discounted, regular and flexi-award tickets on Qatar Airways. So, no upgrades are allowed, even if you use your valuable points for it. Alongside this, discounted tickets disqualify members in upgrading their seats. Lastly, Platinum-tier members get to see available seats while Gold-tier members cannot.
It’s any airlines’ marketing strategy for its customers to collect more points to use for the exclusive membership perks. Regarding Qatar Airways, these points are clearly for luxury and the expensive jet-setter lifestyle. So, with your accumulation of Qmiles and membership benefits, we hope you get the best perks for your points.
Are you getting the most for your points? What would you change about airlines’ loyalty rewards system if you could? Let us know in the comments below and don’t forget to like and share – it keeps us going!
With additional reporting by Giovanna Albanese
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