You can now book Qantas premium economy with American miles

Feb 28, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

American Airlines AAdvantage members can now use miles to book Qantas premium economy flights on American’s website, the airline announced Feb. 28.

“AAdvantage members may now book award travel in Premium Economy with Qantas on aa.com and through Reservations,” American said in a statement. “When redeeming miles at aa.com, members will now see Premium Economy on applicable routes with available award seats. Qantas is the fifth partner with which we’ve launched Premium Economy award booking since October 2019.”

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Using American’s current award chart, a premium economy award from the contiguous U.S. to Australia (South Pacific) will set you back 65,000 American miles each way. We value American miles at 1.4 cents each, making a one-way premium economy ticket from the U.S. to Australia worth $910, or $1,820 round-trip. Cash prices from West Coast cities like Los Angeles (LAX) to Sydney (SYD) frequently hover around $2,700 round-trip on Qantas, making the usage of American miles a steal.

We’ve reviewed Qantas’ premium economy product before, and were impressed with the seat width, recline, storage space and in-flight entertainment system.

Booking Qantas premium economy flights through American Airlines is simple. You’ll just need to navigate to American’s site, input your departure city, destination, dates and check “redeem miles.” If there’s award space, you’ll be able to select it under the “Premium Economy” section. If you don’t see award availability on the date that you want, you may want to check directly at Qantas’ website.

Note that American isn’t the only way to book Qantas premium flights. You can transfer American Express Membership Rewards, Capital One MilesCiti ThankYou Points and Marriott Bonvoy points to the Qantas Frequent Flyer program. But last summer, Qantas announced that it was increasing the number of points required to book a seat in a premium cabin. For instance, a premium economy return ticket between Melbourne (MEL) and Los Angeles will set you back a whopping 162,600 miles. That means if you have your heart set on flying premium economy on Qantas, you may want to use American miles.

Related: American Airlines adds partner premium economy awards

American has been on a roll in recent months, adding several other airlines’ premium economy awards, which give travelers more legroom on partner airlines headed to Europe and Polynesia. Since October, American has offered the option to book premium economy awards on British Airways, Air Tahiti Nui, Iberia and Cathay Pacific.

Note that some booking options are better than others. If you’re a fan of British Airways, for instance, you probably are aware of the high surcharges the airline imposes on award tickets on its own site, and the taxes and fees imposed by American. However, if you book Iberia premium economy awards through American, those high surcharges are slashed.

Related: How to avoid fuel surcharges on award travel

If you need more AA miles to book your next premium economy award, your best bet to boost your account balance quickly is by opening a cobranded American Airlines credit card, like the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard®, Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard® or CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®. For more ideas on how to redeem your miles, check out our guide to maximimizing redemptions with American Airlines AAdvantage.

Featured photo by Nicholas Ellis/The Points Guy.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.