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Woolworths confirms return of Qantas points to Rewards program, at half the earn rate

Woolworths has confirmed its about-face by announcing that it will once again offer shoppers Qantas points after customer outcry when it dumped the airline from its loyalty scheme earlier this year.

woolworths rewardsBut shoppers will earn just half the Qantas points they could under the previous scheme although a minimum $30 spend has been removed from requirements.

The retailer will give shoppers points for every dollar spent at Woolworths as part of Woolworths Rewards and will allow points to be converted to Qantas points.

The move represents a significant turnaround for Woolworths in the face of anger from members under the old scheme who complained about being forced to buy specific items to earn points and no longer being able to earn Qantas points.

Ingrid Maes, director of loyalty and customer data at Woolworths, said the changes were part of a move by the retailer to put customers first.

“We are pleased that our members have responded positively to automatically getting money off their shopping,” Maes said.

“However, we’ve acknowledged that we didn’t deliver enough orange ticket offers in-store and while many of our members have been rewarded well, too many have not.

“By introducing a guaranteed reward-per-dollar spent at Woolworths Supermarkets, BWS and selected Caltex Woolworths, all members receive a reward when shopping with us.”

Under Woolworths Everyday Rewards program shoppers were able to earn one Qantas point for every dollar spent over $30; however, the earn rate under the new scheme has effectively been halved with 2000 Woolworths Rewards points converting to 870 Qantas points.

While the earn is less than half, the supermarket claims that with no minimum spend, and with shoppers now able to earn points at Woolworths Caltex stations, the system brings it on par with the old one.

Woolworths also says as people shop more frequently, basket sizes are reducing, meaning many people would not have reached the $30 threshold under the old system and they would now also be able to earn points on petrol purchases at 530 Caltex Woolworths sites.

The retailer cited the average shopper (based on basket size) previously earned 33 Qantas Frequent Flyer points, where the same shop would now earn 47 points.

As well as reintroducing Qantas points, the retailer has also introduced a ‘Christmas bank’ allowing shoppers to ‘bank’ $10 savings every time their points balance reaches 2000.

“This isn’t the end of improvements to our loyalty program. We’ll continue to listen to our members and introduce new, attractive features to evolve the program in line with member preferences and feedback,” Maes said.

Lesley Grant, CEO of Qantas Loyalty, said the new arrangement would give Qantas Frequent Flyer members more flexibility in earning points.

“The opportunity to earn points when you buy petrol has been improved, with members now able to use a discount voucher and earn points in the same transaction, instead of having to choose one or the other,” grant said.

“We know the offer of Qantas Points influences people’s decision on where they shop, so this is something that will deliver value to our millions of members as well as to Woolworths as our partner.”

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