SCB X Card offering 50,000 Qantas Frequent Flyer points sign-up gift


Get 50,000 Qantas Frequent Flyer Points when you sign-up for the SCB X Card by 2 March 2021...but what do you do with them?

Standard Chartered seems to be eager to show some love to their lesser-known frequent flyer partners through the X Card. 

Just a few days after a 45,000 miles acquisition offer popped up for EVA Air Infinity MileageLands, a 50,000 points offer for Qantas Frequent Flyer has now appeared. This is 66% more than the BAU 30,000 miles offer, but is it worth it? 

Qantas x SCB X Card offer

Sign Up Here

From 2 February to 2 March 2021, customers who apply for an SCB X Card through Qantas Frequent Flyer channels will receive 50,000 Qantas Points when approved (and upon payment of the S$695.50 annual fee). 

⚠️ This offer is only valid for those who have not applied for the X Card previously

Unlike the regular sign-up gift, this is awarded in Qantas points, not SCB points. The miles will be deposited directly into your Qantas Frequent Flyer account within 60 working days from 2 March 2021. You won’t have the option of transferring them anywhere else. 

Your (physical) SCB X Card must be activated within 30 days of approval, and you must remain a cardmember for at least six months after approval. The full T&C of the offer can be found here. 

Are 50,000 Qantas points worth paying S$695.50 for? Well…

What can you do with Qantas Points?

Qantas A380 Business Class
Qantas A380 Business Class

If you ever feel like complaining about the miles game in Singapore, take one look at Australia and count your lucky stars you don’t live there.

Qantas Frequent Flyer is a perfect example of what happens when you have a captive market. First of all, Qantas charges Australian residents A$99.50 a year just to join their frequent flyer program! The fee can be waived with certain cobrand cards and promotions, but the idea that you’re expected to pay for the privilege of collecting miles…

As if that wasn’t bad enough, Qantas Frequent Flyer is notorious for hefty fuel surcharges on Qantas redemptions (they don’t impose fuel surcharges on revenue tickets anymore, so it’s purely a junk fee), very poor premium cabin award space, and steep redemption rates.

⚠️ You can’t price a Qantas award without sufficient miles in your account, so you can’t even check what these fuel surcharges will be before transferring miles. Using the ITA Matrix won’t work, because these surcharges are only imposed on awards, and ITA prices revenue tickets

Why is Qantas Frequent Flyer so bad? Because it can be. Australians don’t have much choice when it comes to frequent flyer programs, and Qantas is the biggest name in the game down under. 

If you’re nonetheless curious to check out the rates, here’s Qantas Frequent Flyer’s award chart that covers travel on Qantas, Jetstar, Airnorth, Fiji Airways, Air Vanuatu, and American Airlines (Emirates used to use this chart too, but that ended on 31 August 2020). 

Qantas Classic Flight Reward table
Y= Economy | PY= Premium Economy | J= Business | F= First
All award prices in ‘000 of Qantas Points

Some sample costs for one-way flights between Singapore and Australia:

  • Economy: 25,200 (Perth: 20,300)
  • Premium Economy: 51,300
  • Business: 68.400 (Perth: 57,000)
  • First: 102,600

There aren’t an awful lot of sweet spots for redeeming Qantas flights, thanks to the fuel surcharges. For every itinerary I can think of between Singapore and Australia, you’d be much better redeeming KrisFlyer miles instead. 

Moreover, we don’t know when Qantas will resume international flights. Qantas’ CEO has said it’s unlikely that international flights will resume before July 2021, so even if leisure travel becomes possible for Singaporeans, we probably won’t be sitting on a Qantas jet in the near future. 

Here’s how much you’ll pay if you want to redeem flights on oneworld partners, or with Aer Lingus, Air Niugini, Alaska Airlines, China Airlines, China Eastern, EL AL or Emirates. 

Partner Classic Flight Reward table
Y= Economy | PY= Premium Economy | J= Business | F= First
All award prices in ‘000 of Qantas Points

Partner redemptions aren’t much better, particularly because Qantas prices its awards on a per sector basis. In other words, the total points required will be calculated by taking each segment as a one-way trip, then taking the sum of points required for each leg on that itinerary. This means it’s poor value to redeem a connecting itinerary, which you’ll probably need if you’re flying from Singapore to the US or Europe on a oneworld partner. 

Emirates Business Class

If you really wanted to try Emirates’ cabin products, I suppose you could redeem a Business Class flight from Singapore to Brisbane/Melbourne for 75,000 Qantas points (Emirates has fifth freedom rights on this route). While Emirates hasn’t done away with fuel surcharges entirely, it no longer imposes them on Singapore to Australia flights. 

Qantas Points don’t expire, so long as you earn or redeem at least one point every 18 months. 


Another partner-driven acquisition offer for the Standard Chartered X Card, but just like EVA Air, it’s going to have very limited appeal. Qantas Frequent Flyer just isn’t a very compelling FFP, and unless you’re based in Australia, there are much better options available. 

Paying S$695.50 for this is a tough ask.

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

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