This is fantastic news for Qantas Points collectors who want to travel to Taiwan—and potentially further afield.

Where does China Airlines fly?

China Airlines flies from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to its hub in Taipei, Taiwan. (Note, the name of this airline is deceiving—it’s Taiwanese, not Mainland Chinese.)

Japan is its biggest market, with onward connections to China also plentiful. The airline also serves about five destinations each in Europe and North America.

Popular China Airlines routes for Australia-based travellers

Note that Ontario in California is a good airport as an alternative to Los Angeles. The two airports are about a one-hour drive from one other and are equidistant from Disneyland.

Why should I fly China Airlines?

China Airlines offers a very solid product in all cabin classes.

The airline uses a combination of Airbus A350-900 and Boeing 777-300ER aircraft for its longest flights, including those from Australia. You are most likely to be on an A350 but that depends on the route and season.

Business Class passengers will have a very comfortable journey onboard a plush seat in a beautiful cabin with great customer service. All flights to/from Australia feature lie-flat seats.

China Airlines 777-300ER Business Class seats
China Airlines long-haul Business Class

Unfortunately, though, the lounges in Taipei aren’t the best.

Premium Economy passengers enjoy comfortable and wide 2-3-2 seating with lots of legroom, as well as attentive and reliable service.

China Airlines A350 Premium Economy | Point Hacks
China Airlines Premium Economy

However, the food in this cabin lacks a ‘wow’ factor compared to travelling in Economy Class.

Why should I visit Taiwan?

I spent a month in the country at the start of 2019 and here are my observations:

  • Friendly people
  • Spectacular nature
  • Very clean
  • Delicious food
  • Affordable accommodation
  • Easy to get around by train
Taroko Gorge
The beautiful Taroko Gorge is a good day or overnight trip from Taipei

I would recommend avoiding travel during Chinese New Year as most businesses (including restaurants) will be closed.

Also, pedestrians should exercise caution at all times as cars and motorcycles are king here. I was close to getting hit a number of times.

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How many Qantas Points do I need to fly China Airlines?

Here is the Qantas Point pricing for a one-way Business Class flight from Australia to Taipei:

CabinUntil 17 September 2019From 18 September 2019
Business Class65,00075,000
Premium Economy Class52,50059,000
Economy Class30,20030,200

Read more about the pricing changes coming into effect on 18 September 2019 here.

It does not appear that Qantas Points can be used on routes other than Australia – Taipei. However, please let us know in the comments if you are able to do otherwise—that would be great news.

China Airlines is generally quite generous with its award availability, including on flights to and from Australia.

Do you need to call to book or can I do it online?

China Airlines redemptions can be booked online through the Qantas website.

China Airlines Qantas search
When you get to the search results, look for a CI flight number

When does Qantas’ award calendar availability open up?

Qantas’ award calendar opens at 353 days (almost one year) before departure.

Alternatives to get to Asia, North America and Europe

If you want to use Qantas Points for a trip to North or East Asia, flying Cathay Pacific to Hong Kong or Japan Airlines to Tokyo are good options.

For those wanting to jet to North America, American Airlines via Los Angeles and Fiji Airways via Nadi are promising alternatives.

And travellers to Europe might consider Emirates via Dubai, Qatar Airways via Doha or Cathay Pacific via Hong Kong.

If you have Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, Avianca LifeMiles, United MileagePlus or THAI Royal Orchid Plus miles, then you can fly on China Airlines’ competitor EVA Air.

EVA Air 787-10 Business Class
Star Alliance points can be used for travel in EVA Air’s 787 Business Class

Summing up

I’m thrilled that Qantas Frequent Flyer members can now use their points for redemptions on China Airlines. It’s a fantastic airline for flying to Taiwan and further afield.

Have you flown on China Airlines yet? What was your experience?

You can now redeem Qantas Points for travel on China Airlines: great value was last modified: October 7th, 2021 by Matt Moffitt