Qantas has announced a few changes to its Qantas Cash product – including a name change. From April, they will begin referring to the product as Qantas Travel Money. It is a name that better reflects the purpose of the product, which is essentially a Qantas branded travel card.
While that may be the most visible of the changes, it may be the least important. There are changes being made to points earning and to the load fee.
The most important change to the points collector is the removal of some payment types as point earning. From July 1, 2018 the following will no longer earn Qantas Points
- BPAY payments to third parties,
- transactions made in operating a business,
- bank fees and charges,
- transactions made using Qantas Points, or
- government related transactions.
The transactions caught under the government related transactions is quite broad. According to the PDS
Government related transactions include transactions with government or semi-government entities, or relating to services provided by or in connection with government (for example but not limited payments to the Australian Taxation Office, council rates, motor registries, tolls, parking stations and meters, fares on public transport, fines and court related costs). Please note that whether or not a purchase is an eligible purchase will be determined based on information provided either by the merchant or the relevant financial institution (including information about the type of business conducted by the merchant). This means that, for example, spend with certain merchants may be characterised as spend with a government related entity and therefore not an Eligible Transaction, even if that merchant is not in fact a government related entity.
On a more positive note, the Instant Load Fee is being reduced from 1% to 0.5%.
An interesting set of changes, but for some the sting may be in the loss of earn on government transactions. While some cards have clamped down on payments to the ATO, the Qantas Travel Money change cuts through most government payments.