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Qantas expands frequent flyer offering with Airbnb partnership

written by australianaviation.com.au | October 4, 2016

A Qantas flight attendant stands in front of a Qantas Boeing 737-800 featuring the Airbnb logo. (Qantas/James Horan)
A Qantas flight attendant stands in front of a Qantas Boeing 737-800 featuring the Airbnb logo. (Qantas/James Horan)

Qantas’s 11.4 million frequent flyer members have a new option for earning points for their travels through a partnership with Airbnb.

The arrangement enables Qantas’s frequent flyers to earn one point for every dollar they spend on an Airbnb booking made through the airline’s website.

To celebrate the tie-up, the airline replaced the “A” in the Qantas logo on the fuselage of a Boeing 737-800 with the Airbnb logo for a promotional photo.

It is the latest effort from the airline to expand the range of points-earnings options for its growing membership base in areas such as health insurance and movie tickets, as well as a push towards more data analytics.

Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said technology platforms such as Airbnb were being increasingly used by all sorts of travellers.

“The way that people around the world plan, book and experience travel is changing rapidly with the digital revolution,” Joyce said in a statement on Tuesday.

“We know many of our customers are just as likely to arrange an Airbnb as they are to book a hotel, and we wanted to recognise and reward them for that.


Airbnb co-founder and chief executive Brian Chesky said people were seeking more “personalised and unique experiences” when they travel.

“We’re focused on connecting people with the hospitality of locals, welcoming travellers into their communities so they can truly belong anywhere,” Chesky said.

“There are just a handful of global brands who understand that travel is now changing for the better. Qantas is one of those brands.”


Airbnb said it had about 2.5 million accommodation listings across 191 countries.

Qantas has also published a couple of promotional videos on its YouTube channel:


The Qantas initiative followed Virgin Australia’s launch of its Velocity Live hub in partnership with the owner of Ticketek where its frequent flyers can earn points for concert tickets and other events.

Qantas’s Loyalty division reported a 9.8 per cent improvement in underlying earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) to $346 million in 2015/16.

At Virgin, Velocity Frequent Flyer posted underlying EBIT of $139.7 million in 2015/16, up 72 per cent from the prior corresponding period.

Comments (5)

  • Mike


    I don’t think Qantas have thought this through. Airbnb is still a grey area in many places, if not outright illegal. In Australia the law is ambiguous at best. Remember the fuss when Virgin Australia teamed up with Uber before it was legal?

  • Vannus


    Mike……..sorry, but you’re incorrect, about QANTAS……

    QANTAS doesn’t do anything without ‘thinking it through’!

    Have YOU any idea how many people are employed in their various ‘Legal Departments’?

  • Chris


    I agree with Mike’s comments. Qantas has rushed into this partnership with Air BNB without looking at the long term consequences of the very dark area of Air BNB legality in most countries plus Qantas exiting relationships with major global accommodation chains.

    Air BNB is a technology company playing the role of a global accommodation provider. Like with Uber which is a technology company trying to be a transport operator, using private dwellings and cars still have a lot of legal issues in most countries over consumers safety, building/vehicle compliance. local taxes, etc.

  • Craigy


    @Mike and Chris. How do you know this is a rushed decision? Do you know what due diligence was done by Qantas prior to signing the contract? What was the advice from legal? How long has this tie up been in the planning stages?

    If you can provide evidence to support your assertion then I will agree with you.

  • Tim


    PResumably about as much planning as Virgin put into the deal with Uber in November 2014?

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