Point Hacks Credit Card Guide

The highest Asia Miles-earning credit cards

Cathay Pacific’s Asia Miles is one of the most useful programs for redemptions in Business and First Class with Cathay Pacific and other oneworld member airlines like Qantas and Japan Airlines.

Asia Miles is a transfer partner of several bank rewards programs in Australia and, as a result, earning Asia Miles from credit card spend is one of the key ways you can get your hands on points. If you happen to put a lot of your day-to-day spend on American Express, Visa or MasterCard, there are some high points earning options out there.

We’ve rounded up some of the highest Asia Miles-earning cards on the market, with American Express options earning more than 1 Asia Mile per $, and the Visa/MasterCard options earning over 0.75 Asia Mile per $.

We’ve included an overview table so you can assess the cards that are out there, versus those you may have in your wallet. We also include some of the current sign-up bonuses for new applicants.

Redemptions on domestic Qantas Business Class flights are one of the best uses of Asia Miles

Earn rate changes

Note that 2017 is proving to be a game changer in the Australian credit card market, with a number of changes from the Reserve Bank continuing to make themselves felt to consumers and business alike. We are now seeing changes in a wide range of cards especially with regards to card benefits, points earn rates and transfer rates.

All figures in the tables below are updated with details from the latest announcements and we will do our best to keep this guide up-to-date.

Both ANZ and Citi were the first ones to announce changes to their range of credit cards this year. ANZ is severing ties with American Express but also increasing earn rates on Visa cards, albeit implementing a points cap across their lineup, effective 6 August 2017.

Citi’s changes also affect the majority of their points-earning credit cards, with both earn rate and transfer rate to partners being adjusted, effective 15 June 2017.

Recent announcements by Westpac, St. George group, NAB and Commonwealth Bank have seen even more changes coming into the scene with most changes effective from 1 July 2017 onwards.

You can keep up with all the upcoming changes here.

The highest Asia Mile earning credit cards

Card / OfferAmerican Express
Asia Mile
earned / $ spent
Visa/Mastercard
Asia Mile
earned / $ spent
Points CapAnnual Fee ($)Our Guide
American Express
Business Accelerator ↓
2 mile (1 mile after cap)-100,000 p.a.160
American Express
Explorer ↓
1.5 miles-uncapped395
Westpac Altitude
Business Platinum ↓
1.2 miles0.4 mile domestic
0.8 mile overseas
uncapped295
American Express
Platinum Charge ↓
1 mile on general spend
except utilities and ATO
3 miles at selected restaurants
2 miles on travel & overseas
spend
-300,000 p.a.1,200
American Express
Platinum Edge ↓
1 point on general spend except utilities and ATO
3 points at supermarkets
2 points on fuel
-uncapped195
American Express
Business Platinum
Charge ↓
1 mile on general spend
2 mile on selected business
and advertising expenses,
at most restaurants
in Australia, on travel
and overseas spend
-375,000 p.a.1,500
Citi Prestige Visa0.4 mile on general spend
0.8 mile at major petrol
stations, supermarkets
and retailers
1.2 miles at major
restaurants, airlines
and international
spend
uncapped700

How to analyse this list

For all the cards and offers listed on this page we are only touching on the ‘effective earn rate’ – this is when points in the parent bank/credit card rewards program are transferred to Asia Miles, and is a way to compare the specific points earn rates for each card across various credit card rewards programs that offer different headline earn rates and transfer rates to frequent flyer programs.

Each card has other benefits too, along with other transfer partners, annual fees and terms and conditions – so be sure to check out the full guide to each card.

There’s also the sign-up bonus of a card to consider. A large sign-up bonus may help to offset a lower earn rate on a card, so bear that in mind. It depends how much spend you put on your credit card each month, and how long you keep the card for.

Each card offer, with bonus, fee and other offer information on this page will be up-to-date at the time of publication, however, please note that offers change over time.

Some current offers for key Asia Miles-earning credit cards



American Express Business Accelerator - 2 points per $ up to 100,000 points yearly

The American Express Business Accelerator offers business owners and sole traders 2 Membership Rewards per dollar up to 100,000 points earned each cardholder year, with 1 point per $ earned after for an annual fee of $160.

  • 2 Membership Rewards points earned per $ spent everywhere (except for utilities, insurance and the ATO up to 100,000 points per year)
  • 1 Membership Rewards point earned per $ after 100,000 points earned in a year
  • $160 p.a. annual fee

Find out more or apply →

Point Hacks earn a maximum of $200 per applicant for this card. More about this →

The American Express Business Accelerator earns the equivalent of 2 Asia Miles per dollar up to 100,000 miles earned per year.



American Express Explorer - 50,000 Membership Rewards Gateway points

American Express 'Explorer' card has 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards Gateway points on offer. Includes $400 travel credit each year, free American Express lounge access plus a range of insurances and high points earn rates on spend.

  • 50,000 Membership Rewards Gateway point bonus
  • $400 travel credit every year
  • Free access to the Sydney Airport American Express lounge twice a year
  • 2 Membership Rewards points earned per $1 on all purchases except government bodies where you will earn 0.5 points per $1 spent.
  • Included Insurances - smartphone screen insurance and various travel insurances (PDS)
  • 0% p.a. on balance transfer for the first 12 months - A one-off credit plan establishment fee of 1% applies
  • $395 p.a. annual fee
  • Card Members who currently hold or who have previously held any Card product issued by American Express Australia Limited in the preceding 18 month period are ineligible for this offer. Previous and existing bank-issued American Express companion cardholders are eligible for this offer
  • $1,500 minimum spend in 3 months required to earn bonus points

Find out more or apply →

Point Hacks earn a maximum of $250 per applicant for this card. More about this →

The American Express Explorer earns the equivalent of 1.5 Asia Miles per dollar with no points cap, including utilities. Government bodies earn at 0.5 miles per $ spent.



The Westpac Altitude Business Platinum cards earns 1.2 Asia Miles per dollar on the American Express and 0.4 Asia Miles on the linked MasterCard.



American Express Platinum Charge - 80,000 Membership Rewards points

With a 80,000 Membership Rewards points bonus available on sign up, the American Express Platinum Charge is a great card for those who want to earn Membership Rewards points on everyday spend with lots of additional benefits. Read the Point Hacks guide for the full rundown.

  • 80,000 Membership Rewards points signup bonus
  • $300 travel credit annually
  • Unlimited access to certain airline lounges - including Virgin Australia Domestic, Delta and American Express lounges globally
  • Access to American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts perks & discounts
  • 3 Membership Rewards points earned per $ spent at restaurants, 2 points earned per $ on travel spend, and 1 point per $ everywhere else except for utilities and the ATO
  • $1200 p.a. annual fee
  • Card Members who currently hold or who have previously held any Card product issued by American Express Australia Limited in the preceding 18 month period are ineligible for this offer. Previous and existing bank-issued American Express companion cardholders are eligible for this offer.
  • Bonus points require $1,500 minimum spend in first 3 months
  • Charge card, not credit card - balance requires payment in full each month but with no pre-set spending limit - more about this

Find out more or apply →

Point Hacks earn a maximum of $330 per applicant for this card. More about this →

The American Express Platinum Charge Card earns the equivalent of at least 1 Asia Mile per dollar for most transactions, with 3 Miles per $ on restaurant and dining spend, and 2 Miles per $ on travel and overseas spend – those bonuses are available up to 300,000 miles per year.

Utilities & government bodies earn at 0.5 Miles per $ spent.



American Express Platinum Edge - No annual fee on the first year

American Express are offering $200 travel credit each year and no annual fee on the first year with the Platinum Edge. Offers 3 points per $ at supermarkets, and 2 points per $ on fuel.

  • $200 travel credit each year which can be used for flight, hotel or rental car bookings with Amex Travel
  • Travel and purchase protection insurances (PDS)
  • 3 Membership Rewards points earned per $ spent at supermarkets, 2 points earned per $ on fuel, and 1 point per $ everywhere else except for utilities and the ATO
  • 0% p.a. on balance transfers for the first 12 months, with a 1% establishment fee - maximum balance transfer is $10,000 or 70% of your approved credit limit, whichever is less
  • Annual fee: Free on the first year (usually $195 p.a.)
  • Card Members who currently hold or who have previously held any Card product issued by American Express Australia Limited in the preceding 18 month period are ineligible for this offer. Previous and existing bank-issued American Express companion cardholders are eligible for this offer.

Find out more or apply →

Point Hacks earn a maximum of $180 per applicant for this card. More about this →

The American Express Edge earns the equivalent of at least 1 Asia Mile per dollar for most transactions, with 3 miles per $ on supermarket spend, and 2 miles per $ on fuel spend uncapped.

Utilities & government bodies earn at 0.5 miles per $ spent.



American Express Platinum Business Charge - 100,000 Membership Rewards points

With a 100,000 Membership Rewards bonus, the American Express Platinum Business Charge card is aimed at small and medium size businesses who want to maximise their points earn and travel benefits.

  • 100,000 Membership Rewards points on approval
  • 2 Membership Rewards points earned per $ spent at restaurants, airlines, accommodations and business expenses, 1 point per $ everywhere else except for utilities and the ATO
  • A vast range of Small and Medium Enterprise specific benefits, insurances (PDS), rewards and travel options
  • Unlimited access to Virgin Australia and American Express airline lounges globally
  • $1500 p.a. annual fee
  • Spend $5,000 in first two months of ownership to qualify for signup bonus
  • Card Members who currently hold or who have previously held any other Card product issued by American Express Australia Limited in the preceding 18 month period are ineligible for this offer. Previous and existing bank-issued American Express companion cardholders are eligible for this offer.
  • Offer expires: 4th July 2017

Find out more or apply →

Point Hacks earn a maximum of $330 per applicant for this card. More about this →

The American Express Platinum Business Charge earns the equivalent of 1 Asia Mile per dollar on general spend, and 2 miles on travel and overseas spend, and selected restaurant, business and advertising expenses, capped at 375,000 p.a.

Cards in the table, but not mentioned above

Offers for some of the cards are not mentioned above as they don’t offer a sign-up bonus, or we don’t have a guide for them yet.

The focus of this guide is to outline the highest Asia Miles-earning credit cards out there – there are many other cards with differing points earn rates and annual fees that are also linked to Asia Miles. Check out the cards table for the list.

Jump back up to offer ↑

Point Hacks Credit Card Information

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Comments Expand Comments

  1. jabs

    another option is to ask amex to link your Explorer card to the Ascent program instead of Gateway – if you also have a Platinum Edge. Makes the earn rate 2/$ instead of 1.5/$.

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