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Qantas to revamp Frequent Flyer program – what it means



Qantas CEO Vanessa Hudson has pledged to revamp the company’s loyalty program in what could be its most substantial overhaul yet.

The proposed changes, expected to be branded as Classic+, aim to enhance customer engagement and alleviate frustration among frequent flyers who have faced challenges in redeeming their points for flights since the easing of COVID-19 restrictions.

According to sources close to the discussions, not authorized to speak publicly but cited by The Australian Financial Review, the new scheme is likely to convert one Frequent Flyer point to 1¢ for economy flights.

While the conversion rate is anticipated to be more favorable for higher cabin classes, at its core, it would mean that a $100 flight would cost 10,000 Frequent Flyer points under the proposed system.

Enhanced engagement

Traveller dissatisfaction with the Qantas Frequent Flyer program has been mounting, particularly as customers encountered difficulties in utilizing their points to book flights post-pandemic.

The anticipated changes are poised to enhance engagement with the loyalty scheme, which generated $1.27 billion in revenue and $270 million in earnings in the six months leading up to December 31.

During discussions on the company’s first-half performance last month, CEO Vanessa Hudson disclosed that $50 million, out of the $230 million allocated for improving the customer experience, would be directed towards the loyalty division, including Classic Rewards.

Steve Hui, CEO of iFlyFlat highlighted the frustration among many of Qantas’ loyal customers who have struggled to find Classic Rewards seats.

He suggested that the proposed changes to the scheme primarily target investors rather than customers, raising questions about its value proposition for consumers.

Despite concerns, Jefferies equities analyst Anthony Moulder noted in a recent client note that the number of Qantas Frequent Flyer members has surged by 76.7% since 2012.

However, the number of Classic Seat redemptions has only marginally increased from about 4 million to approximately 5 million. Qantas intends to maintain the number of Classic Rewards seats at 5 million.

While addressing shareholder skepticism, particularly regarding the company’s earnings margins, Qantas reassured that the frequent flyer improvements are still in progress.

The airline said its commitment to delivering value for its members while aligning the program with the needs of both customers and partners.

Ahron Young is an award winning journalist who has covered major news events around the world. Ahron is the Managing Editor and Founder of TICKER NEWS.

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Workers rush back to their desks over job fears



Workers across Australia are rushing back to their desks, driving office utilisation rates to their highest levels since February 2020.

Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays emerge as the busiest in-office days, contrasting with the continued reluctance to return on Fridays.

This insight, drawn from XY Sense data based on 18 enterprise customers in Australia employing approximately 68,000 individuals across 127 buildings, reflects a significant shift in workplace dynamics.

The surge in office attendance coincides with a resurgence in workplace attendance mandates and policies linking physical presence to bonuses and performance reviews.

However, co-founder of XY Sense, Alex Birch, suggests that rising job insecurity, rather than these policies, primarily drives this behavioral shift.

“The pendulum has moved towards the employer, and therefore people feel more obliged to go back into work,” commented Mr. Birch.

Job market

Danielle Wood, chairwoman of the Productivity Commission, anticipates this trend to persist as the job market softens.

She notes a disparity between employer and worker perceptions regarding the productivity benefits of hybrid work arrangements, hinting at potential shifts in the employment landscape.

Meanwhile, economists at the e61 Institute observe a partial reversal of the pandemic-induced “escape to the country” trend.

Rent differentials between regional and capital city dwellings, which narrowed during the pandemic, are now widening again.

This trend suggests a diminishing appeal of remote work options and a return to urban commuting.

Aaron Wong, senior research economist at e61, said the emergence of a “new normal,” characterised by a hybrid lifestyle that blends access to office spaces with proximity to lifestyle amenities such as natural landscapes.

While regional rents decline, rents for homes on the urban fringe surge, reflecting evolving preferences shaped by remote work opportunities.

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Why resilient economy is fuelling demand for Australian property



Despite inflationary pressures, Australian house prices have surged to a record high for the fifth month in a row, as indicated by CoreLogic data.

Australian house prices have not only weathered inflation but have also soared to unprecedented levels, marking the fifth consecutive month of record highs, according to data from CoreLogic.

This resilience reflects the enduring demand for property in the country, showcasing the sustained interest of buyers despite challenging economic conditions.

VentureCrowd’s Head of Property, David Whitting, talks how investors can access alternative ways of property investing.

Presented by VentureCrowd #funding futures #housing #economy

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Three reasons why you don’t need to panic about inflation



Inflation in the US has exceeded expectations for the third consecutive month, driven by increases in essential commodities such as oil, electricity, takeaway food, and medical costs.

  1. Despite a 3.8% year-on-year rise in CPI, it’s notable that this figure has decreased from its previous 9% high.
  2. The robust CPI and economic growth numbers suggest a positive outlook for US corporate earnings.
  3. The S&P500 has seen five 1% drops this year, all of which were met with investors buying the dip.

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