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Qantas under fire for “epic corporate fail”

Members of Qantas’ frequent flyer program have hit back at Qantas Group chief executive Alan Joyce, who earlier this week gifted a $50 ‘voucher’ as an apology to the airline’s frequent flyers. 


To many, the gift was not without strings.


A quick look at the terms and conditions reveals that frequent flyers have until 30 September to accept the promo code, then the code has to used by 30 November for travel by 30 June 2023.


While some may have appreciated the gesture, others have seen past the move, calling it a ploy to line the airline’s coffers. 


A Qantas Frequent Flyer took to Reddit to express their outrage, saying, “I see it as a passenger-acquisition cost to boost your revenue by 30 Nov 2022”, News Corp reported.


“Not an apology, just marketing – you need to book an eligible return flight to use it,” one user said.


“This is an epic corporate fail. $50 is just insulting,” said another.


Have you been ‘joyced’?


Others simply refuse to be tricked into booking direct after having spent hours on hold. “When you think of how long on hold I waited to talk to someone about using my travel credits, $50 is a p!$$ in the pan,” a QFF member told Traveltalk.


And what of those travel credits?


The airline’s full year results released yesterday revealed that Qantas is still sitting on $1.3 billion of unused credits.


According to Joyce, while credits are being used to book flights at a rate of $80 million a month, the airline recognised more effort was needed to assist customers, The Australian reported.   


“In the coming weeks, we’ll be putting on a dedicated concierge phone number where customers can call a dedicated team in our contact centres for help if they need it,” Qantas chief financial officer Vanessa Hudson said.


But despite this “great customer service initiative” (as Joyce calls it), people are unhappy with how hard it is to redeem travel credits, one person telling The Australian that he was initially charged a “change fee” of $99 when he tried to use a travel credit for $615.21.


Upon contacting the call centre, he was told the fee was an error and they would book the flight for him.


“The price then quoted by the call centre was over $100 more than what was quoted on the website at the very same moment,” said the customer.


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Published: 26 August 2022

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