New parents will welcome the Qantas ‘parental pause’, a new initiative that allows their Frequent Flyers to keep the benefits of their membership status while on parental leave. This new initiative is not gender specific.
Where previously your status would drop when you weren’t flying as often because of time taken out of work to raise your children, if you hold a Silver, Gold and Platinum Frequent Flyer Card, you will now be able to maintain your status for up to 18 months, even if you are not earning the number of Status Credits usually required to retain that tier. You will also continue to enjoy your existing tier benefits, which may include lounge access, bonus points offers and preferred seating options.
Feedback from members wanting more flexibility from their Qantas Frequent Flyer membership has led to the changes, according to Qantas Loyalty CEO Lesley Grant.
….. The Qantas Frequent Flyer program is about rewarding loyalty and someone’s Silver, Gold or Platinum status is a symbol of the loyalty they’ve shown Qantas over the years so we really want to recognise that. Status Hold is designed to suit their evolving lifestyle and family needs. A new addition to a family is an exciting time, so this initiative means new parents don’t have to worry about losing their hard earned membership benefits for up to 18 months. We recognise that all families are a bit different, so Status Hold will apply to men and women and those welcoming a foster or adopted child. Lesley Grant
Status Hold Criteria
Status Hold is available to eligible Silver, Gold and Platinum Frequent Flyers who are taking at least six consecutive months off paid employment to spend time with their family. Both parents can apply and may be eligible if they are:
- A parent of a baby or babies that are due to be born within the next three months or were born in the last six months
- A foster parent who will be caring for a child within the next three months or who has started caring for a child within the last six months
- A parent who will be adopting a child within the next three months or who has adopted a child within the last six months.
Members looking to continue expanding their family can apply for Status Hold twice during a five year period.
Full details on eligibility and how to apply can be found here.
In addition to the launch of the Status Hold initiative for parents, Qantas Frequent Flyer has increased its Family Transfer points limit and removed the restriction on the number of transfers. Members can now make an unlimited number of transfers to eligible family members up to 600,000 Qantas Points each year, compared to 400,000 previously. This would mean the equivalent of a return Business Class Classic Reward Flight redemption from Sydney to Los Angeles (before taxes, fees and carrier charges) which gives families the opportunity to travel together on Reward flights if an individual doesn’t have enough points.
The minimum transfer rule of 5,000 Qantas Points still applies.
Qantas family-friendly programs
The changes announced today support Qantas’ broader family-friendly programs, including:
- ‘The Joey Club’ – Qantas’ Frequent Flyer program for kids aged up to 10 years of age
- Family Zones in Lounges
Pre and Inflight benefits, including
- Entertainment, over 10 family movies each month, a Kids TV channel with a range of programs, plus a dedicated Kids Zone with a parental lock
- Joey Playbox Kids iPad App – available free to download from the App Store
- Kids packs and meals inflight
- Infant meals (up to 2 years) – provided with a limited range of top brand baby food, milk, baby bottles, cereals and rusks
- Priority family boarding (staff will be on hand at the boarding gate ready to collect the stroller and to further assist with pre-boarding the aircraft)
- Additional Baggage Allowance (include a collapsible stroller or push-chair, collapsible cot or bassinet; and car seat or baby capsule)
For more information, there is a complete list full range of Family Travel information available on the Qantas website.