Qantas Announces New Card Payment Fee Structure

11th Jul 2016

In May, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) singled out airlines as major offenders in a card payment fee scheme, saying that it will impose heavy penalties on any company that charges a higher card payment cost than what it cost that business in accepting them.

Today, the Australian flag carrier Qantas responded by announcing a new card payment fee structure. This makes the Flying Kangaroo the first airline in Australia to officially declare its new fee structure.

According to the new structure, credit card users will be charged less for short haul flights on Economy Class, while Business Class and First Class passengers will probably still pay slightly higher fees as a result of the new percentage-based model.

ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said:

"In short, the new provisions will limit the amount businesses can surcharge customers for use of payment methods such as most credit and debit cards. The limit will be linked to the direct costs of the payment method such as bank fees and terminal costs.

Qantas said on Friday that it will change its credit card fee to 1.3 per cent against a flat $7 it right now has for domestic and Trans-Tasman flights and $30 for international flights.

A debit card fee, Qantas revealed, will be changed to 0.6 per cent of the total cost, as against $2.50 for domestic and Trans-Tasman and $10 for international routes.

The cap for both credit cards and debit cards will be $11 for short haul and $70 for long haul flights.

For example, on a flight from Sydney to Melbourne in August ($290), the customer would have to pay a debit card fee of $2.50 or a credit card fee of $7. With these changes, the new fees would be $1.74 for debit cards and $3.77 for credit cards.

However, while the Economy Class passengers will undoubtedly be happy about the new fees, same cannot be said for First Class and Business Class customers.

For example, a Business Class traveller on a return flight to Paris, France ($7,500) will have to pay a debit card fee of $45 or a credit card fee of $70.

The new fee structure will start from 1st September.