What American Airlines’ Enhanced Qantas Partnership Means For Passengers

American Airlines and Qantas are set to enhance their partnership. Overall, for passengers, this change will be a net positive. With new codeshare opportunities and benefits for those with frequent flier memberships, passengers can expect a better deal across both airlines. Ultimately, these changes make logical sense for both Qantas and American Airlines.

American Qantas Partnership
American Airlines and Qantas are set to enhance their partnership. Photo: American Airlines

What do frequent flier members get from this partnership?

According to a press release American Airlines put out, AAdvantage members will be able to earn more on flights between the United States and Australia or New Zealand. This includes up to two times more elite qualifying miles (EQMs), which are requirements for elite status, and elite qualifying dollars (EQDs) onboard Qantas aircraft for most classes.

Qantas cabin
AAdvantage members can earn additional EQMs and EQDs while flying in a Qantas cabin. Photo: Qantas

On the other hand, members of the Qantas Frequent Flyer program will be able to earn additional Qantas Points and Status Credits when flying onboard American Airlines.

American and Qantas expand transpacific partnership

American Airlines and Qantas are expanding their codeshare agreements as well. Here are the following Qantas flights that American will now codeshare on:

  • Los Angeles – Sydney
  • Dallas-Fort Worth – Sydney
  • San Francisco – Melbourne
  • San Francisco – Brisbane
  • Chicago – Brisbane

The new Brisbane flights will start in April 2020. In total, there will be four weekly flights between Brisbane and Chicago. Moreover, San Francisco will see thrice-weekly service from Qantas.

Qantas A380
Qantas is expanding services out of Brisbane, which American Airlines will codeshare on. Photo: Qantas

American and Qantas expand domestic U.S. codeshares

In preparation for new services to Chicago, the following American-operated flights will also carry Qantas codes:

  • New York to Chicago (LaGuardia and Newark)
  • Boston to Chicago
  • Miami to Chicago
  • Washington-Reagan to Chicago
  • Philadelphia to Chicago
  • Charlotte to Chicago
American Airlines
Several American routes out of Chicago will receive Qantas codes. Photo: American Airlines

Although Qantas already flies to Dallas, the following American-operated routes out of Dallas will receive Qantas codes:

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  • Spokane, Washington to Dallas
  • Charleston, South Carolina to Dallas
  • Dayton, Ohio to Dallas
  • Savannah, Georgia to Dallas
  • Vail/Eagle, Colorado to Dallas
Qantas A330
Qantas passengers will be able to fly to more regional destinations in the United States. Photo: Qantas

Why this makes sense

American Airlines and Qantas received the all clear for their joint venture back in July, 2019. Since then, Qantas has also been examining the viability for Project Sunrise flights. And, having a partner in the United States gives them a huge advantage since American can help Qantas keep their planes full.

American Boston
American Airlines can help Qantas keep its planes full of connecting passengers. Photo: American Airlines.

For American, this helps solidify their position amongst United States-based passengers as offering the most connections to Australia. Although United does not have a major partner in Australia, Delta and Virgin Australia have been working closely together.

Overall

Ultimately, additional benefits may arise for passengers if American and Qantas extend their partnership further with true additional transpacific routes. An example of a more highly-anticipated route would be between Dallas and Brisbane. However, neither American nor Qantas have formally announced this route. Although, it is possible that the route is under consideration. Since long-haul routes can come at an incredible cost, like American saw with routes from Chicago to China, they are likely waiting to see how additional transpacific service goes before inaugurating new ones.

Will you fly any of these new codeshare routes? Do you prefer Delta/Virgin Atlantic or American Airlines/Qantas for transpacific routes? Let us know in the comments!

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Mark Scott

Earning points on Basic Economy would be nice for QFF members. Qantas has minimum earn and status on all its flights.