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How to book domestic QantasLink flights in Australia with Avios points

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This article shows you how to book domestic QantasLink flights in Australia using Avios – and the answer is not to use ba.com.

If you are heading down to Australia in the near future, there is an Avios quirk which is good to know about.

Qantas is, of course, a member of the oneworld airline alliance alongside British Airways.  This means that you can book Qantas flights using your Avios points, directly at ba.com.

How to book Qantaslink using Avios

Qantas has a subsidiary, QantasLink, which flies between regional destinations across Australia. To quote:

QantasLink is located at Qantas Terminal 3 in Sydney with customers travelling to and from Sydney enjoying exclusive world-class facilities. QantasLink flights also depart from Qantas domestic terminals in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Darwin, Hobart, Melbourne, and Perth.

It uses a mixed fleet of Airbus A320, Boeing 717, Fokker F100 and Bombardier Q400, A300 and 200 series turboprops.

You can’t book these flights on ba.com

Reward flights on QantasLink do NOT appear on ba.com when you search for reward seats – only mainline Qantas flights appear.

However, it IS possible to use Avios to book these services.

How can I find QantasLink Avios availability?

There are two options.

The first option is to use the Qantas website, although this is a bit more fiddly.

The first thing to do is to register for a Qantas Frequent Flyer account via their website.  You can then search for availability via the main booking page by ticking the box saying ‘Use points’.

As an example, Sydney to Hobart is showing as a ‘Classic Reward’ for 15th March in Economy Class and Business Class.  ONLY ‘Classic Reward’ seats can be booked with Avios – ignore the other reward pricing shown.

The easiest way is to use the American Airlines website.  This is because you don’t need to create a frequent flyer account – simply select ‘Redeem Miles’.  If a QantasLink flight shows as available with AA miles then it will be available with Avios.

For the same flight:

Unfortunately, if you go to ba.com then the flight does NOT show up because it is QantasLink:

If you call British Airways Executive Club, they CAN find and book QantasLink flights for Avios.  You need to tell the agent the flight details – which you have already confirmed from the Qantas or American Airlines sites – and it should show as available on their system.

Sydney to Hobart is 646 miles and so falls into the cheapest Avios partner pricing band of 6,000 Avios each way for Economy and 12,500 Avios each way in Business.  Ignore the number of points shown on the Qantas and American Airlines websites – this only applies if you are booking using their miles.

Regular commentator Alan is well experienced in booking these services and gave the following tips last time we looked at this topic:

  • If the British Airways agent initially says there’s no availability for a return flight, ask them to check as one way flights each way rather than return – they will often then appear
  • Internal flights in Australia can be pretty cheap on low cost carriers but there are often high baggage fees.  This can still make Avios redemptions look good value.  If you have British Airways status you would be able to access Qantas domestic lounges which are fairly reasonable.
  • For flights within New Zealand take a close look at the Air New Zealand Grab A Seat (grabaseat.co.nz) website.  It is separate to their main one and can have vastly lower prices.   Air New Zealand is a Star Alliance member so if you have Gold status with any of their airlines you will get free seat selection and lounge access.

HFP-Barclaycard-Avios-Card

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (January 2023)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 21st February 2023, the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Premium Plus American Express card is increased to 35,000 Avios from 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

35,000 Avios (ONLY to 21st February) and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.

SPECIAL OFFER: Capital On Tap has increased its sign-up bonus to points worth 30,000 Avios if you apply by 4th February. This is exclusive to Head for Points readers. Click here to apply.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 30,000 points bonus, worth 30,000 Avios, until 4th February 2023 Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (22)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • F1Flyer says:

    This is a great tip, thank you.

    Is there anything similar with AA? I want to book some reward flights LAX-DFW next year. BA is showing nothing but the AA site has lots of availability.

    Also, Rob, thanks for the AmEx-Marriott-AA workaround. Is there any devaluation in this process?

    • Rob says:

      Amex to Marriott is 2:3, Marriott to AA is 3:1, so basically 0.5 AA per 1 Amex point.

    • Stu_N says:

      AA have tiered award pricing and you can only book the cheapest (sAAver, I think) rewards with Avios and other OneWorld partner miles.

  • Oliver says:

    Doing some internal Australia flights in January. MEL-BNE, OOL-SYD. SYD-MEL. Where can I find out if these will earn avios? I’ve a vague recollection not all internal routes are BA codeshares?

    • Charles Martel says:

      You should earn points as long as they have a QF or BA code. You won’t earn on Jetstar, Virgin, etc..

    • JAXBA says:

      You’d only be able to book the BA codeshare flight number on the internal QF flights if it’s all on the same ticket as your longhaul flight(s) into Australia. If you’re booking the internals separately, you’d have to book the QF code. BA can’t sell the domestic Australian flights by themselves.

  • Mikeact says:

    Hobart ? Nicer to take a ferry from Melbourne to Launceston with a rental car and do the tour down and around to Hobart.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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