If Thailand has been on your radar, it’s likely that you’ve heard of Phuket. As the country’s largest island, it’s a sought-after destination thanks to its stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife and affordable attractions.

We explored Phuket during our latest experience and with some points up your sleeve, you can, too!

In our pocket guide to Phuket, we cover your options to travel there from Australia using points from frequent flyer programs like Qantas, Velocity and KrisFlyer. We also round up the lounges on offer for departing passengers at Phuket International Airport, plus our top tips to get rewarded for accommodation.

Flying to Phuket on points

This idyllic island is easily accessible from Australia when flying with various airlines including Qantas, Jetstar, Singapore Airlines and Thai Airways. And what’s even better is that you can redeem points to fly to Phuket in style.

We’ve highlighted all the options below to fly from Australia to Phuket using various frequent flyer programs.

Flying Qantas + Jetstar

There are plenty of combinations when it comes to redeeming Qantas Points to fly to Phuket. With Qantas, you can fly into Bangkok and spend a few nights discovering Thailand’s capital city before continuing your journey to Phuket. Alternatively, fly direct to Singapore and then onwards to Phuket with Jetstar Asia.

Jetstar also operates direct routes to Phuket from Melbourne and Sydney which can be redeemed using Qantas Points. Note that Jetstar flights booked via Qantas include checked baggage allowance and complimentary standard seat selection.

Below is our round-up of different ways to fly to Phuket using Qantas Points.

Qantas   + Jetstar logo - Point Hacks
using Qantas Airways Logo Qantas Points
Melbourne, Sydney to Phuket (Jetstar)21,50051,300
Melbourne to Phuket via Singapore (Jetstar)21,50051,300
Adelaide, Brisbane, Gold Coast to Phuket via Melbourne/Sydney (Jetstar)26,00061,500
Gold Coast to Phuket via Sydney (Qantas + Jetstar)29,50069,700
Adelaide to Phuket via Sydney (Qantas + Jetstar)31,50063,300
Qantas Points required are per person, one way. Taxes, fees and charges are also payable and vary by route. *Business Class is not available on Jetstar Asia flights from Singapore to Phuket.

You’ll notice that you can fly from Melbourne direct to Phuket with Jetstar, or travel via Singapore for no extra points. If you’ve been itching to check out Jewel Changi Airport, the latter is an ideal opportunity to do so!

When searching for reward seats, keep an eye out for the Emirates flight between Melbourne and Singapore, a fifth freedom route. You can use Qantas Points to fly in the luxury of Emirates Boeing 777 First Class – and yes, that includes unlimited caviar!

Fly from Melbourne to Singapore with Emirates in First Class
Redeem Qantas Points to fly from Melbourne to Singapore with Emirates in First Class, then onwards to Phuket.

Ways to earn Qantas Points

If you’re a few Qantas Points short for your getaway, you’ll be glad to know that it’s easy to earn a stack of points on the ground.

One of the best ways is with a Qantas Points-earning credit card. You’ll not only earn points from your spend, but cards like the Qantas Premier Platinum, Qantas American Express Ultimate and Westpac Altitude Qantas Platinum offer bonus points for new cardholders. All you have to do is apply for the card, be approved, and meet a minimum spend requirement to be eligible for bonus points. That could be enough to cover a return Economy trip to Phuket, or one-way in the lap of luxury!

Qantas Wine is a tasty solution to top up your points balance. You can earn up to 10,000 Qantas Points when you purchase an eligible case of wine. And if you don’t favour wine, you can also select from non-alcoholic beverages, beer, cider, seltzer and more. Pocket additional points by taking advantage of bonus points promotions throughout the year, plus earn triple points if you’re a Qantas Points Club member.

With the Everyday Rewards program, you can opt to convert your Everyday Rewards points to Qantas Points at a rate of 2:1. This means that the next time you shop at Woolworths, Big W, BWS or other Everyday Rewards partners, you could be closer to your Phuket holiday.

Flying Malaysia Airlines

Malaysia Airlines operates direct routes from Australia to Kuala Lumpur. From the Malaysian capital, it’s less than a two-hour flight to Phuket. And given that Malaysia Airlines is part of the oneworld Alliance, you can book flights to Phuket using Qantas Points.

Malaysia Airlines logo (one-way)
using Qantas Airways Logo Qantas Points
Perth to Phuket via Kuala Lumpur24,50061,200
Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney to Phuket via Kuala Lumpur30,20075,000
Points required are per person, one way. Taxes, fees and charges are also payable and vary by route.

Flying Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines services several Australian cities, and you can fly to Phuket via Singapore. With multiple flights departing Singapore for Phuket daily, you may want to consider an extended transit to discover Singapore’s Changi Airport.

Singapore Airlines flights from Australia to Phuket can be booked using KrisFlyer miles or Velocity Points, though you’ll often find better availability using Singapore Airlines’ own points currency.

Using KrisFlyer miles

The number of KrisFlyer miles needed to fly Singapore Airlines is shown below.

Contact us | Singapore Airlines (one-way)
using KrisFlyer miles
EconomyPremium EconomyBusiness
Darwin, Perth to Phuket via Singapore21,500N/A40,500
Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney to Phuket via Singapore30,50051,00068,500
Points required are per person, one way. Taxes, fees and charges are also payable and vary by route.

Ways to earn KrisFlyer miles

It’s surprisingly easy to earn KrisFlyer miles on the ground in Australia. Singapore’s national carrier is part of the Star Alliance network, so you can redeem your points with a range of partner airlines including Virgin Australia.

Though there aren’t any credit cards in Australia where you can earn KrisFlyer miles directly, many banks have flexible reward programs that allow you to convert your points to KrisFlyer miles. Here are some of the best credit cards for KrisFlyer miles, where you can take advantage of generous sign-up bonuses to be on your way to Phuket.

If you’re short a few KrisFlyer miles but have some Velocity Points up your sleeve, you can convert Velocity Points to KrisFlyer miles at a rate of 1.55:1, which also opens up better availability when booking reward seats with Singapore Airlines.

Using Velocity Points

You can also redeem your Velocity Points to fly with Singapore Airlines. Here’s how many you’ll need.

Contact us | Singapore Airlines
using Virgin Australia  Velocity Points
EconomyPremium EconomyBusiness
Darwin to Phuket via Singapore25,000N/A55,000
Perth to Phuket via Singapore27,000N/A57,000
Adelaide to Phuket via Singapore29,00052,50067,000
Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney to Phuket via Singapore31,00052,50071,000
Velocity Points required are per person, one way. Taxes and fees are also payable and vary by route.

Ways to earn Velocity Points

Virgin Australia’s loyalty program, Velocity Frequent Flyer, offers plenty of opportunities to earn Velocity Points in Australia.

As with many frequent flyer programs, topping up your balance can be done with a credit card that earns Velocity Points. And if you sign up for a new card that offers bonus points, like the American Express Velocity Platinum, then even better.

Use your Velocity Points-earning card when you shop at the Velocity e-Store to double your points-earning potential. Velocity e-Store is an online shopping portal where you’ll be awarded Velocity Points simply by clicking through and completing transactions with a number of online partner retailers. This method can net you several Velocity Points per dollar spent on eligible transactions, and it requires virtually no extra effort (aside from a few additional clicks!)

And similar to Qantas’ partnership with the Everyday Rewards program, Velocity partners with the Flybuys loyalty program. Flybuys points earned from shopping at Coles, Kmart, Officeworks, Bunnings and other partner retailers can be converted to Velocity Points at a rate of 2:1.

Phuket Pocket Guide - flying Singapore Airlines
Fly to Phuket in Business Class comfort with Singapore Airlines.

Flying Thai Airways

Thai Airways is a member of the Star Alliance network, so you can also redeem KrisFlyer miles to fly with Thai Airways from Australia to Phuket.

Thai Airways logo
using KrisFlyer miles
Melbourne, Sydney to Phuket via Bangkok35,000108,000
KrisFlyer miles required are per person, one way. Taxes, fees and charges are also payable and vary by route.

More ways of flying to Phuket

We’ve listed the fastest and most direct routes to Phuket from Australia, but there are other ways to fly to the island paradise if you don’t mind taking the scenic route. If you’re struggling to find reward seat availability, it’s handy to know that there are other options to redeem your hard-earned points.

AirlineBook usingAustralian cities servedTransit point
Cathay PacificQantas Points or Cathay milesBrisbane, Melbourne, Sydney, PerthHong Kong

Exploring Phuket International Airport

Phuket International Airport (HKT) is located on the island itself, so you can jet set straight into paradise.

Transport from Phuket International Airport

Phuket is the largest island in Thailand – comparable to the size of Singapore – so it may take some time to get to your accommodation from the airport. If you’re staying along Patong beach, Phuket’s most popular area, expect to pay around 700-800 Baht (roughly $30-$45) for a 50-minute taxi ride. You can find metred taxis at the metred taxi stand just outside of the arrivals hall.

While metred taxis are easy enough to obtain at Phuket Airport, you may struggle to find them elsewhere across the island. The rideshare app Grab is handy for moving about the island, but note that Grab drivers aren’t allowed to collect passengers from Phuket Airport.

Another option is the Phuket Smart Bus. This bus runs to and from Phuket Airport and can connect you to various parts of the island, including from beach to beach. A bus trip from Phuket Airport to Patong will set you back just 100-190 Baht, or $4-$8. The journey is approximately 70 minutes, which isn’t too much longer than a taxi and for a fraction of the cost. But if you’re travelling as a group or with plenty of luggage in tow, a taxi may be easier and more cost-effective.

Phuket’s beaches can be reached by Grab, taxi, tuk tuk or the Phuket Smart Bus.

Lounges at Phuket International Airport

Phuket International Airport has two terminals – international and domestic – both offering a selection of lounges for departing travellers.

Here’s where you can kick back before your flight.

Thai Airways Royal Orchid Lounge

Thai Airways’ Royal Orchid Lounge in Phuket Airport is located airside in the international terminal. It services the airline’s own Business Class and First Class passengers, as well as passengers departing on a Star Alliance airline or who hold Star Alliance status. Find out how you can fast-track your way to Star Alliance Gold.

Here’s who can access the Thai Airways Royal Orchid Lounge.

  • Thai Airways Business and First Class passengers.
  • Star Alliance Business Class and First Class passengers.
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Elite Gold, PPS Club and Solitaire PPS Club.

The Coral Executive Lounge

Located airside in international departures, The Coral Executive Lounge is not affiliated with a particular airline, though it can be accessed by eligible travellers flying with Singapore Airlines. Alternatively, certain programs like Priority Pass and LoungeKey provide complimentary access, or you can pay a small fee to enter the lounge regardless of airline or cabin class.

Here’s who can gain entry into The Coral Executive Lounge.

  • Singapore Airlines Business Class passengers.
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Elite Gold, PPS Club and Solitaire PPS Club.
  • Members of the Priority Pass program.
  • Fee-paying walk-in passengers departing on any airline.

It’s also possible to pay to enter the Coral Executive Lounge in the domestic terminal, though at the time of writing the domestic lounge is temporarily closed.

Priority Pass lounges in Phuket Airport

If you hold a Priority Pass membership, you’ve got a few options to select from if you’re flying from Phuket’s international or domestic terminals. The latter is particularly handy if you’re flying onwards to another destination in Thailand, or flying to Bangkok before heading home.

  • Bangkok Airways Blue Ribbon Lounge (domestic)
  • Coral Beach (domestic)
  • Royal Orchid Lounge (domestic)
  • Coral Premium Departure Lounge (international)
  • The Coral Executive Lounge (international and domestic)

Earning and using points on hotels in Phuket

The pristine beaches of Phuket lend themselves to relaxation, and budget is no issue here. From affordable hostels and guesthouses to five-star luxury accommodation, here’s how you can earn rewards from your stay on this dazzling island.

Book directly with the hotel

Hotel loyalty programs offer a host of perks for members – early check-in, late check-out, complimentary breakfast, free upgrades or a welcome drink, to name a few. The best way to work towards status with a particular program is to book directly with the hotel. There are several properties across Phuket that are part of popular loyalty programs like Marriott Bonvoy, Accor Live Limitless and IHG One Rewards.

Pullman Phuket Arcadia Naithon Beach is part of the Accor Live Limitless program, so you can earn and redeem rewards on your stay when you book direct.

Book through a third-party provider

Third-party websites don’t provide the benefits of hotel loyalty status, but they’re a great way to earn points towards a frequent flyer program instead. Or you can nab cheaper accommodation, minus the rewards. Here’s how.

If you want to earn Qantas Points

Qantas Hotels awards you with Qantas Points when you book a hotel or Airbnb through the platform. The standard earn rate is three points per $1 spent on hotels, while the Airbnb earn rate is 1:1. And if the rewards weren’t generous enough, members of Qantas Points Club can earn up to 50% more points per booking. We also recommend keeping an eye out for special offers from Qantas Hotels, like the popular triple points promotion.

If you’ve got some Qantas Points up your sleeve, you can also redeem them for Classic Reward hotel bookings on Qantas Hotels.

If you want to earn Velocity Points

Velocity doesn’t have its own hotel booking platform, but you can still earn three Velocity Points per $1 on bookings made via Rocket Travel.

If you want to earn KrisFlyer miles

KrisFlyer miles can be earned when you book accommodation via Rocketmiles, which is a separate platform from Rocket Travel. You’ll earn points towards Rocketmiles own rewards program, which can be transferred to a number of partners including KrisFlyer.

If you want a discount on your booking

Booking.com’s Genius loyalty program offers a 10%-20% discount when staying at participating properties, depending on your member level. This is ideal if you’re not chasing status with a particular brand or prefer the flexibility to stay across different types of accommodation like hostels and apartments.

If you want to save on the cost of your hotel bill

Credit cards like the American Express Platinum Edge and American Express Explorer include travel credit that can be redeemed via American Express Travel for hotels, flights and car hire. The travel credit can often offset the card’s annual fee, and you can unlock the perks of American Express Membership Rewards.

Point Hacker’s tips and tricks

Here are some of our final tips to help you plan your Phuket holiday.

  • If you’re looking to redeem points for a flight to Phuket, ensure you’re searching for ‘Classic Rewards’ and not ‘Points Plus Pay’. You’ll likely be looking at the latter if the points total is far higher than what we’ve outlined above, and you won’t get the best value from your points. Read more about what a reward seat is and how they work.
  • Prefer window or aisle or – we won’t judge – the middle seat? Here’s how you can choose the best seat on the plane.
  • Singapore Airlines is a popular choice for Aussies making their way to Phuket, and its fees and taxes on reward seats are often less than other carriers. You’ll get the best value when redeeming KrisFlyer miles, given Velocity’s increased carrier charges on Singapore Airlines flights.
  • Using a credit card with no overseas transaction fees can save those additional costs from adding up when you pay in a foreign currency.

And that’s all for our Point Hacker’s guide to Phuket! The island paradise is calling.

How to hack your way to Phuket with points was last modified: August 24th, 2023 by Victoria Kyriakopoulos