Singapore Changi Airport announced in April that it was revamping its Changi Rewards programme, there were a raft of changes including the inclusion of the ability to convert Changi Rewards Points into Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Miles, we’ll look at whether it is worth it.
About the Changi Rewards Programme
Earning Changi Rewards Points
You can earn Changi Rewards points by making qualifying purchases at all retail, dining and service outlets located at the public and transit areas in Changi Airport. There’s a long list of exclusions:
- Money changing facilities
- Top-up card facilities and purchases
- Postal services
- Medical services
- Lounges (Bank/Airline/Ambassador/Pay-per-use/SATS Rainforest/Jet Quay)
- Transit hotels
- Hotel reservations counters
- Crowne Plaza Hotel
- Telecommunications outlets and counters
- Changi Recommends service counters
- Car rental services
- Airport shuttle
- Transportation counters
- Passenger meeting services counters
- Left luggage service counters
- Tour and travel services
- Drycleaning services and temporary event & short-term non tenant outposts
- Purchases of Gift / In-Store Vouchers are not entitled to Changi Rewards points.
For every $1 spent, members earn 1 point on qualifying purchases at Changi Airport outlets. Gold members earn 2x Changi Rewards points ($1 = 2 points) and Platinum members earn 3x Changi Rewards points ($1 = 3 points). The Changi Rewards card must be presented at the point of sale for Changi Rewards points to be awarded. A minimum spend of $10 is required in a single receipt and dollar are rounded down to the nearest. Points are awarded based on the nett purchase value after deduction of discounts and voucher redemptions at all participating retailers. Payment made using Changi Dollar Vouchers and all other In-Store Vouchers are not entitled to Changi Rewards points.
You can find out more about the Changi Rewards programme here. Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer doesn’t yet have Changi Rewards as a listed partner yet.
Changi Rewards membership Tiers
There are three tiers to the Changi Rewards programme – Member, Gold and Platinum. The summary of benefits is below (click for a larger image):
One of the biggest drawbacks of the inclusion of being able to redeem Changi Rewards points for KrisFlyer Miles is that you can only do so as a Gold or Platinum member. This means that you need to be spending a minimum of $S4,000 per membership year (the minimum to obtain Gold) in order to be able to redeem for KrisFlyer Miles. In addition to that the Changi Rewards programme has a fixed membership year between the 1 April and ends on 31 March the following year where you have to reach the $S4,000 target. On the positive side once you get Gold you retain it for that current year and then for the following year as well – so if you have a large spend you should make it in April so to maximize your Gold membership level.
What’s the Earning Rate for KrisFlyer Miles?
Assuming you were to start the year as a Gold member and spent $1,500 in Changi Airport you would earn 3,000 Changi Rewards points which could be converted at the rate of 3:1 giving you 1,000 KrisFlyer Miles. This gives you a rate of 0.66 KrisFlyer Miles per $S1 spent, which is not fantastic but remember you can double up with a KrisFlyer earning Credit Card such as the American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Ascend or the ANZ Travel Visa Signature Credit Card
Again assuming that you start the year as a platinum member the $1,500 spend would earn you 4,500 Changi Rewards Points which again could be converted at the ration of 3:1 giving you 1,500 KrisFlyer Miles. This gives you a rate of 1 KrisFlyer Mile per $S1 spent – this is of course better than for a Gold member.
Extra Bonus for KrisFlyer Members in the Changi Rewards Platinum Tier
If you happen to be a big spender in Changi Airport and manage to requalify for the Platinum tier then you will be granted a bonus of 25,000 Changi Rewards points OR 8,300 KrisFlyer Miles (effectively worth the same amount).
Redeem for Changi Vouchers – A Better Option?
All members can redeem for Changi vouchers at the rate of $S5 for every 500 points so if you are not likely to get the Gold level membership this is your best option. If you value a KrisFlyer Mile at around the 2 cents mark (see why here) then you are going to get better value for money redeeming for Changi Rewards Vouchers:
$S 1,500 Spend as a Gold Member would earn 3,000 Changi Rewards Points which would be worth $S30 in Changi Rewards Vouchers. Same spend would earn 1,000 KrisFlyer Miles valued at 2 cents per Mile = $S20
$S 1,500 Spend as a Platinum Member would earn 4,500 Changi Rewards Points which would be worth $S45 in Changi Rewards Vouchers. Same spend would earn 1,500 KrisFlyer Miles valued at 2 cents per Mile = $S30
If you generally are able to redeem your KrisFlyer Miles for business or First/Suites then you are likely to be getting value at above 3 cents per KrisFlyer Mile – at this rate it’s worth converting to KrisFlyer Miles instead of using for Changi Rewards vouchers.
Other Important Notes
You can convert a maximum of 90,000 Changi Rewards points to KrisFler Miles per year, and points are valid until the end of the following membership year. There is no mention of a minimum conversion but I would assume it is 3,000 Changi Rewards points. The Changi Rewards Programme has no soft landing either so if you fail to spend the required amount for Gold or Platinum then you drop right down to base.
Collecting Changi Rewards is free so even if you only collect 500 and redeem for a $5 voucher then you are getting something back for your spend, and seeing as you can combine the earning with other loyalty programmes at the stores in Changi Airport you might as well. Generally though for KrisFlyer members this is only going to be a good option if you A – redeem for business class/first/suites or B – you are a high spender in Changi Airport and will get the Platinum tier. Otherwise I recommend that you redeem for Changi Vouchers instead.
Again you can find out more about the Changi Rewards programme here. Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer doesn’t yet have Changi Rewards as a listed partner yet.