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186 posts

Master Geek
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# 106154 18-Jul-2012 20:04
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Hey guys,

I'm going to Japan for new years, the travel agent advised me I may want to look at getting a Air NZ points card (flying with them) seeing as I'm spending so much already - $2168 on the flight.

I looked at their website and it says it cost $50 to join, but I'm unsure if it would be worth me joining. I don't fly that often. 

Anyone have any advice?

Cheers.

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Uber Geek
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  # 657980 18-Jul-2012 20:24
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The $50 is a one-off cost and if you fly internationally even once every 2 or 3 years, I would say it will be worth it. You will earn some Airpoints $ which are useful for purchasing domestic flights. Unless you fly internationally a lot, that is all the Airpoints $ are likely to be useful for though.

With the new OneSmart card, you can also purchase extra Airpoints $ if you don't quite have enough to pay for a domestic ticket. And because the OneSmart card is also linked to FlyBuys, every time you buy groceries or various other goods at participating retailers, you will also be earning a few extra Airpoints $, which will come in handy eventually. Contact Energy also offer FlyBuys on their electricity accounts, so if you happen to be with them, that is an added bonus for you. The OneSmart card costs an extra $1.95 per month unless you load cash onto it during the month. It is also handy for purchasing goods when you are overseas, because you can pay in local currency. All things considered, I think the $23.40 per year cost is worthwhile.





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Ultimate Geek
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  # 657987 18-Jul-2012 20:30
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If you enter "JOINAP" in the code section when you sign up, it'll waive the $50 joining fee - from memory good through to the end of August.

 
 
 
 




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Master Geek
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  # 657992 18-Jul-2012 20:37
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KevinL: If you enter "JOINAP" in the code section when you sign up, it'll waive the $50 joining fee - from memory good through to the end of August.


Thanks a lot! Code worked :)

Doesn't seem like a hard decision now I don't have to pay $50.

Thanks guys. 

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Ultimate Geek
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  # 657994 18-Jul-2012 20:38
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grant_k: The $50 is a one-off cost and if you fly internationally even once every 2 or 3 years, I would say it will be worth it. You will earn some Airpoints $ which are useful for purchasing domestic flights. Unless you fly internationally a lot, that is all the Airpoints $ are likely to be useful for though.

With the new OneSmart card, you can also purchase extra Airpoints $ if you don't quite have enough to pay for a domestic ticket. And because the OneSmart card is also linked to FlyBuys, every time you buy groceries or various other goods at participating retailers, you will also be earning a few extra Airpoints $, which will come in handy eventually. Contact Energy also offer FlyBuys on their electricity accounts, so if you happen to be with them, that is an added bonus for you. The OneSmart card costs an extra $1.95 per month unless you load cash onto it during the month. It is also handy for purchasing goods when you are overseas, because you can pay in local currency. All things considered, I think the $23.40 per year cost is worthwhile.


The OneSmart account fee is only deducted if you have NZ currency on the account - so if you don't use it it doesn't cost anything.  

Airpoints itself has a $30 annual membership fee, but this is waived if you have made any flight in the last 12 months (or reduced to $20 if you have opted for online accounts).

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  # 658029 18-Jul-2012 21:38
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KevinL: The OneSmart account fee is only deducted if you have NZ currency on the account - so if you don't use it it doesn't cost anything.

I loaded some NZ$ onto my card to purchase some topup Airpoints $ so I could buy a domestic ticket.  It was well worth it as I only needed to buy $12 extra so saving $300+ on the ticket.  But having once loaded NZ$ onto my card, Air NZ have got me by the short and curlies I think as they will forever keep charging $1.95 per month from now on, even if there was no balance on the card -- I think???

Does that sound right, or is there a way around it?





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Ultimate Geek
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  # 658032 18-Jul-2012 21:39
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grant_k:
KevinL: The OneSmart account fee is only deducted if you have NZ currency on the account - so if you don't use it it doesn't cost anything.

I loaded some NZ$ onto my card to purchase some topup Airpoints $ so I could buy a domestic ticket.  It was well worth it as I only needed to buy $12 extra so saving $300+ on the ticket.  But having once loaded NZ$ onto my card, Air NZ have got me by the short and curlies I think as they will forever keep charging $1.95 per month from now on, even if there was no balance on the card -- I think???

Does that sound right, or is there a way around it?


They should stop charging once there's no balance left on the card.

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  # 658036 18-Jul-2012 21:51
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Yeah that code works, someone I know used it too :)

Just don't expect too much, the AirNZ programme is maybe one of the worst mathematically.
Accordingly to this chart, a return flight to Japan will get you $40NZ worth of airpoints or $80NZ return. A typical $1,800 - 2000 odd fare might be a W class which is economy fare catergory 3.
http://www.airnewzealand.co.nz/airpoints-dollars-earned-on-airnz-from-24-july-2012

Basically NZ programme requires a lot of travel to get x amount of perks. But they have certainty, b/c if you have $2,000 of airpoints you can travel to Asia return in Christmas, while the other programmes might be easier to get more points they have tell you when you can travel.

You might want to have a look at Air Canada just to see how quicker they can get points. They are also a Star Alliance. I signed my mum for that.

If you have a GlobalPlus credit card or maybe a GlobalPlus home loan you don't have to fly once a year to keep it active and there is no fees.

Off my head, if my mum goes to Asia and back, 6x approx she gets one for free.  Let's say your trip to Japan was $2,000.  You get $80NZ back in points.  You basically need to fly 25x to Asia to get one trip back.  Or maybe discounted to 12.5 trips perhaps if you can get the $999 grabaseat discounts.  *As the other airline programmes they probably give you offpeak flights anyway they don't expect to sell too well.

 
 
 
 


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  # 658139 19-Jul-2012 07:46
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The simple reality is that all airlines are cutting back their loyalty programs, and unless you travel a lot you're not actually getting a lot of perks.

I remember 10+ years ago a return Air NZ trip to London earned enough to get a free return trip to Australia. I was actually looking at fares a few days ago and worked out on a $3200 fare to the UK later this year that you would earn $65 each way from Auckland to London, and (ironically) $10 each way for the domestic connecting fare to Auckland.

$150 these days will just get you to Aussie one way when there is a cheap special on.

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  # 658168 19-Jul-2012 08:47
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KevinL:
grant_k:
KevinL: The OneSmart account fee is only deducted if you have NZ currency on the account - so if you don't use it it doesn't cost anything.

I loaded some NZ$ onto my card to purchase some topup Airpoints $ so I could buy a domestic ticket.  It was well worth it as I only needed to buy $12 extra so saving $300+ on the ticket.  But having once loaded NZ$ onto my card, Air NZ have got me by the short and curlies I think as they will forever keep charging $1.95 per month from now on, even if there was no balance on the card -- I think???

Does that sound right, or is there a way around it?


They should stop charging once there's no balance left on the card.


No, there's an inactivity fee if you don't load money for three months.  The only way to avoid paying fees is to either load $500 NZD a month, or load any amount of foreign currency.  I avoid paying fees on mine by loading $20 a month NZD and immediately converting it to USD, as inactivity fees are only charged if you have no activity on all accounts (NZD and foreign) and activity fees are only charged if you load less than $500 NZD- but there's an overlap where if you load money to a foreign currency account (make sure the NZD balance is $0) then you don't have to pay anything.  It's a tad confusing really.

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