News came out today from Qatar Airways that they will be adopting Avios as the new currency for their Privilege Club frequent flyer program. Avios is the currency of the airlines that are part of IAG (British Airways, Aer Lingus, Iberia, etc.) which Qatar Airways happens to a be a major shareholder so it seems like a natural progression for Qatar Airways to bring on this change.
Right now all that is changing is the currency in the Qatar Airways Privilege Club program. Qmiles will be replaced by Avios on a 1:1 basis and this will happen sometime in March. Everything else for the time being remains the same. For Privilege Club elite status you’ll still earn Qpoints and Qcredits, the expiry rules remain the same and there is no change in the earn and redemption rates that Privilege Club has set right now.
One of the key advantages of Qatar Airways adopting Avios is the number of partners that Avios (well IAG Loyalty) has across their various airline program and it will most likely mean many of those partners will soon become partners with Privilege Club.
Although it hasn’t been officially announced one can assume that with this move you’ll be able to transfer Avios to and from Qatar Airways Privilege Club from the other IAG airlines programs, namely British Airways Executive Club, Aer Lingus Aer Club and Iberia Plus. You can already do so between those latter three and it would only make sense to have to this happen for Privilege Club members as well. If this does happen it essentially adds one more airline partner to the credit cards here in Canada that allow you to convert points to British Airways Executive Club. Those are American Express Membership Rewards Cards, RBC Avion cards and select HSBC Rewards cards.
If you are not a member of Privilege Club yet you can join right now and earn 2,500 Qmiles/Avios just for doing so. (There is also a 2,000 mile offer but why not go for 500 more?)