Perhaps one of the most exciting things you can do in the world of travel is using your hard-earned points to book a reward seat. If you’ve taken out one of the many Qantas credit card sign-up bonuses on Point Hacks, you’re probably ready to start planning your next holiday.

It’s not too complicated if you know what you’re doing. Here is a step-by-step guide to booking your next journey with Qantas Points, whether that be a domestic jaunt or somewhere further abroad.

How to book a Classic Flight Reward seat with Qantas Points [step-by-step]

For those who have a simple one-way or return itinerary, and already know what they want to book, here are the quick steps to get you on your way.

  1. Head to the Qantas website and log in to your frequent flyer account.
  2. Enter all your travel details, including origin, destination and dates.
  3. Select ‘Rewards’ on the booking screen and click ‘Search Flights’.
  4. Choose your desired flights with Classic Flight Rewards available (the red ribbon).
  5. Check out as usual to reserve those reward seats.
Example Classic Reward seats to Tokyo using this search method.

Qantas now offers Classic and Classic Plus reward seats. Where possible, always look for Classic seats (red ribbon) as these are usually better value than Classic Plus (blue ribbon).

That’s it! You’ll receive an itinerary by email within a few hours. If you need to later change or cancel those flights, a fee of 5,000 or 6,000 points applies, respectively.

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How to plan a Classic Flight Reward with Qantas Points

Of course, booking reward seats is easy. Finding reward seats is a whole different matter, and may require some extra planning. Here are some pointers to help you plan your next journey.

Stage 1: Plann your journey with reward tables

We are assuming that by this stage, you have already amassed enough Qantas Points and are now ready to make it all happen. Read some of our other guides on how to plan your perfect journey.

You first need to know how many Qantas Points your proposed route will require. You can check this on the Qantas website – all you need to know is:

  • the operating airline, and
  • the total distance flown between all the airports in your itinerary

The choice of airline is important, as the number of points needed will vary between them. There are 4 Qantas Classic Rewards points tables, and all partner airlines will fall under one of them.

  • Qantas Classic Flight Reward table: travel on Qantas, Jetstar (when mixed with other airlines on this table), Airnorth, Fiji Airways, Air Vanuatu and American Airlines.
  • Jetstar Classic Flight Reward table: standalone travel on Jetstar (JQ), Jetstar Asia (3K), Jetstar Japan (GK) and Jetstar Pacific (BL) on the same trip.
  • Partner Classic Flight Reward table: travel on Air Niugini, Alaska Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, China Airlines, China Eastern, Cathay Pacific, EL AL, Emirates, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qatar Airways, Royal Air Maroc, Royal Jordanian, S7 Airlines and SriLankan Airlines.
  • Oneworld Classic Flight Reward table: When combining any 2 or more oneworld member airlines, excluding Qantas, and does not include any travel on non-oneworld member airlines, such as Jetstar and Emirates.

Stage 2: Check the distance you’ll fly

For the distance, I suggest you head to the Great Circle Mapper website (no affiliations) and enter your airport codes in the search box. For example, Perth to Brisbane to Los Angeles would be PER-BNE-LAX.

GCMAP - Perth-Brisbane-Los Angeles

As long as the transit between flights remains under 24 hours (international) or the same calendar day (domestic), you can add up the total distance and pay the points applicable to that distance travelled. This is better than pricing per flight, which usually works out to be more expensive.

The combined distance of PER-BNE-LAX is 9,407 miles. Assuming we are flying Qantas and are just having a short transit, then go to the first Qantas Classic Flight Reward table and look up that distance.

Qantas Classic Rewards table

In this example, our travel distance fits within Zone 9, so you would need 51,200 Qantas Points in Economy, 94,900 in Premium Economy, 126,500 in Business, or 189,800 in First.

But what if you wanted to fly from Perth to Los Angeles via Hong Kong on Cathay Pacific? The distance would be much higher, at 10,993 miles.

GCMAP - Perth-Hongkong-LA

You would also need to consult the more expensive partner award chart in Zone 10, which requires 66,200 Qantas Points in Economy, 124,800 in Premium Economy, 159,000 in Business Class, or 227,500 in First Class.

Qantas Classic Rewards table - Perth-HongKong-LA

Instead of paying 126,500 Qantas Points on Qantas, you’d need to pay 159,000 Qantas Points on Cathay Pacific due to the quirks of distance travelled and different pricing tables.

Stage 3: Look for reward seats

When you’re ready to book, head to the Qantas website. Ensure your account has enough points to book for everyone in your party. You can move points around with Family Transfers. A reminder: you can only book for yourself and family members, not unrelated friends or colleagues.

Start by switching on ‘Use Points’. Enter all your search parameters, including origin, destination, one-way or return, number of passengers, travel class, and dates. You can also switch on ‘Flexible with dates’ to see a calendar of seat availability.

Once you’ve selected a day to check, any available results will show up. Switch on ‘Classic Rewards’. You’ll now see a list of Classic Reward seats with taxes included. Some partner airlines may also show up. Qantas flights are normally prioritised at the top, even if there are partner airlines that offer non-stop flights.

Qantas new booking interface - search result
Note the difference in points needed when flying via Brisbane compared to via Melbourne.

From here, follow the prompts to check out and book.

How to book multiple reward flights with Qantas Points

Booking a more complex multi-city trip is basically the same steps as booking a single flight, but you need to search sector by sector and find available reward seats for all flights.

Make sure you’re aware of all the rules of mixing and matching different airlines (e.g. a oneworld reward can’t contain Emirates or Jetstar flights), or the pricing can get messed up.

Learn more about the Qantas multi-city booking tool in this separate guide →

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if I keep on getting an error when booking reward seats online?

Call Qantas and mention you can’t book your itinerary online. They should waive any phone booking fees and help you book it.

What if the Qantas Points quoted don’t match what I thought it would be?

There may be a mistake somewhere in your booking. For example, you could have stopovers longer than 24 hours between flights, or you may be mixing airlines between 2 different Qantas Classic Reward Tables, meaning the numbers quoted will be off.

Ask us in the Point Hacks Community if you keep on having problems.

Can I change or cancel Qantas reward seat bookings?

Yes, it costs 5,000 points per person to change an itinerary, or 6,000 points per person to cancel. Everything else will get refunded back after a week or 2. No cancellations can occur after the first flight on the itinerary has been travelled. (Note: this may be waived during the COVID-19 pandemic).

Should I use Points Plus Pay to cover taxes with my Qantas Points?

We don’t recommend you use more points than you need, especially for Points Plus Pay. That process converts your points into cash at a very low rate. You are better off saving them for another trip.

Points plus pay
Don’t pay more Qantas Points than you need. Keep the slider as low as possible!

This article was originally written by Evin Tan Khiew. Latest updates by Brandon Loo.

How to book a Classic Flight Reward seat with Qantas Points was last modified: May 3rd, 2024 by Brandon Loo