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Qantas replaces membership cards with integrated currency cards

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I have run a couple of pieces on Head for Points before about Avios Cash Passport, the card which allows you to store pre-load foreign currency for spending abroad.  I have never been desperately excited by them, even though you can earn points.  The same goes for the British Airways branded version, which is also discussed here.

Down in Australia, Qantas has launched its own version – Qantas Cash.  But they have taken the idea a step further.  The airline is issuing combined Qantas Cash cards and Qantas Frequent Flyer membership cards.

Qantas Cash 2

The same card that you use to get your ticket from the online check-in machine or get yourself into the lounge, can now be loaded up with money and used as a debit card!

Full marks for original thinking from Qantas.  There is no obligation to activate the Qantas Cash feature, but of course once you are already carrying the card around, you would think twice about ordering a competing product from another issuer – even though the Qantas card does not have the lowest fees.

Wonder if we will see BA following suit?  Full details here if you want to know more.  If you are a Qantas member, you should receive your new integrated card before the end of the year.

Comments (6)

  • James67 says:

    I am quite impressed tlo. I wonder if in the future chip and pin cards could store our points, vouchers etc enabling on the spot redemptions, upgrades etch at airport machines, checkin desks or even onboard.

  • Waldek says:

    Qantas Cash is free for eligible Frequent Flyer members who are residents of Australia and over 16 years of age

    • John says:

      Register via Woolworths to avoid the membership fee. Of course you’ll need an actual Australian address to receive the card.

  • John says:

    Interesting, I think I will get one to use in Australia, rather than faffing about with Amex Global Transfer (I have investments in AUD so I hate exchanging GBP, which means I always use cash)

  • Farringdon says:

    Qantas seems like a genuinely innovative operation. They also launched the permanent luggage tags with an RFID chip for their frequent fliers.

  • […] News and notes from around the interweb: Euan points out in the comments to yesterday’s post on British Airways lifetime elite status that BA is also offering lifetime Gold Guest List status for twice as many lifetime tier points. That status lets you trump capacity controls on awards twice per year and also comes with Hilton HHonors Diamond status. Changes you’re going to like at the United Club: The complimentary wine is Sycamore Lane. A drink with Beefeater gin is $9 ($11 for Bombay Sapphire; McCormick’s vodka is complimentary). Heineken is $3, the only complimentary beer is Budweiser (so far, just Bud Light). Of course I remember stockpiling Red Carpet Club drink chits, because no alcoholic beverages were free! For our friends up North, the RBC British Airways Infinite Visa has up to 45,000 points as a signup bonus. The Qantas frequent flyer membership card now doubles as a prepaid debit card. […]