New Qatar Airways Credit Cards Give You Instant oneworld Status, Best Way To Access American And Alaska Lounges?


New Qatar Airways Credit Cards Give You Instant oneworld Status, Best Way To Access American And Alaska Lounges?

Qatar Airways just launched two new U.S. credit cards and they are really interesting since just getting the premium card gives you oneworld status that includes lounge access when flying American Airlines and Alaska Airlines domestically – for less than buying a lounge membership – and even includes access to American Airlines business class Flagship lounges.


Qatar Airways Airbus A380 Business Class Bar

What’s more you have the opportunity to re-earn status based entirely on card spend (though of course you can credit flights, including American and Alaska flights, to be combined to earn this status). There’s no cap on this – spending alone can reach Qatar’s Platinum status, which is oneworld emerald and includes access to partner first class lounges like Cathay Pacific’s The Wing and Pier and the Qantas first class lounges in Sydney and Melbourne even if you’re flying coach.


Cathay Pacific The Pier First Class Lounge

There are two cards:

  • Qatar Airways Privilege Club Visa Infinite Credit Card metal card, $499 annual fee, there’s a bonus of 50,000 Avios: 25,000 after first transaction and 25,000 more after $5,000 spend within 90 days.

    Cardmembers receive Gold status the first year, plus 150 Qpoints after earning the initial bonus (it takes 270 Qpoints to re-earn Gold, and also helps towards platinum). Furthermore, you can spend on the card towards status – 2 qpoints for every $1500 spend – so card spend alone can earn your status.

    Earning is 5x on Qatar Airways; 3x on restaurants; 1x on everything else.

  • Qatar Airways Privilege Club Visa Signature Credit Card $99 annual fee, there’s a bonus of 40,000 Avios: 20,000 after first transaction and 20,000 more after $3,000 spend within 90 days.

    The card comes with Qatar silver for a year and earns 2 Qpoints towards status for every $2,000 spent. Silver gets you airport priority, Qatar lounge access and 2 guest passes annually plus extra baggage allowance.

    Earning is 4x on Qatar Airways; 2x on restaurants; 1x on everything else.

Those of you who joined the waitlist earn an extra 5,000 Avios for the Signature product and 10,000 for the Infinite product when approved within 30 days of card launch and meeting minimum spend requirement.

Qatar Privilege Club has become really useful. You can freely transfer points back and forth with other Avios programs like BA. And often their awards are less expensive – for instance if you redeem American Airlines transatlantic business class BA hits you with huge surcharges while redeeming through Qatar does not.

The Signature card comes with 1 year automatic silver status and the Infinite card comes with 1 year of automatic gold. Qatar Airways does soft downgrades, so even if you don’t requalify you’d just drop to silver).

But requalifying is made easy because the Infinite card has 150 Qpoints as part of Sign up bonus. That’s a majority of the points needed for Gold status in your second year.

What’s more you can spend to achieve status with no caps.

  • Signature gives 2 qpoints per $2000 spend
  • Infinite give 2 qpoints for every $1500 spend

Gold status is oneworld sapphire which gets American Airlines and Alaska Airlines lounge access as well as American Airlines business class Flagship lounge access even on domestic itineraries. This is the simplest way of ‘buying oneworld sapphire’ and it’s cheaper than an Admirals Club membership, and cheaper than the Citi co-brand that comes with membership, plus it’s Flagship access.


American Airlines Flagship Lounge, Dallas – Fort Worth

Qatar Gold also comes with 75% tier bonus on earning Avios with eligible flights; priority stand-by, check-in, boarding and baggage handling; complimentary access to Qatar lounges in airports and 4 guest lounge passes every year; extra baggage allowance of 1 piece or 20 kg (44 lbs) and complimentary preferred seat selection; complimentary meet and assist services from Al Maha Services while traveling through Hamad international Airport in Doha.

The airline of course has one of the best premium products in the world, from its QSuites business class to its first class al Safwa lounge.

I don’t really see the case for the Visa Signature. But the Visa Infinite product is huge. It unlocks oneworld sapphire, and the card’s initial bonus more than covers its cost in year one. It’s a way to spend towards status, Qatar Gold is worthwhile in its own right, and you can even spend for oneworld emerald if you wish (though straight spending through American would be easier).

Interestingly, while American Express is an investor in Cardless and they’ve introduced Amex cards, these new Qatar cards are Visas (including their first Visa Infinite).



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