Diners Club NZ have announced that the Diners Club Credit Card in New Zealand will be discontinued starting January 1st, 2019.
The card is no longer available to new applicants and all existing cardholders will only be able to use their card and redeem Club Rewards until 31st December 2018.
Here’s an official letter confirming the announcement, courtesy of one of our readers:
We left this guide up for reference as existing cardholders will still be able to use their card until the end of the year.
The Diners Club Credit Card comes with complimentary access to a large global network of airport lounges, and a range of other travel offers, including unique dining and hotel privileges. It does however have limited acceptance, and offers no ability to earn points that can be transferred to airline or hotel membership programs. Here’s the full rundown.
|Card||Diners Club Credit Card|
|Loyalty program||Club Rewards. Optional to join, additional $30 per year.|
|Points earned from spend||1 Club Rewards point for every $1 spent|
|Travel benefits||Free access to over 700 airport lounges worldwide, one complimentary single-entry Auckland Airport Strata Club pass each year, unique dining, travel, entertainment, shopping, and spa offers worldwide|
|Annual fee||$68 p.a.|
|Additional cardholder fee||$40. Additional cardholder will also have complimentary access to airport lounges worldwide.|
|Foreign currency fee||2% of NZD converted value of foreign currency transaction amount|
Earning Points with the Diners Club Credit Card
The Diners Club Credit Card earns points in Diners Clubs’ own Club Rewards program, should you choose to enrol for an additional $30 per year.
There is a flat earn rate of 1 Club Rewards points for every dollar spent on the card. You can then redeem your points on a range of products from their online catalogue. However unlike American Express Membership Rewards, these points are unable to be transferred to any airline or hotel membership programs, despite what Diners Club state on their Fees & Rates pages on their website:
And in their Terms & Conditions for the card:
(I have additionally confirmed this with their franchisee, the Warehouse Group).
You can choose to redeem points on flights and hotel stays however these are redeemed through their travel partner, PIC Travel.
We’re not a big fan of online stores here at Point Hacks, as they generally offer poor return for points redemptions.
Club Rewards Online Catalogue
Lounge access with the Diners Club Credit Card
If you are a regular international traveller, a valuable benefit that comes complimentary with Diners Club is the ability to access more than 700 lounges worldwide for the primary cardholder.
Want regular access for another family member? Apply for a supplementary card for an additional $40 per year, and that cardholder will also gain access to any of the participating lounges.
This includes Auckland Airport’s own Strata Club lounge. While the Diners NZ website claims that this is complimentary only once per 12-month period, my experience has been that you don’t get charged for subsequent visits.
Many of these lounges are the same used as part of the Priority Pass network. Annual membership with unlimited access for one person with Priority Pass would usually set you back US$399 per person.
You can guest others into the lounges, however this will come at a cost. Many lounges however will allow you to admit children below a certain age for free.
Auckland Airport Strata Club
Diners Club Privileges
Diners Club offer access to more than 1,400 dining, hotel, and shopping offers with partners in over 70 different countries. You can download the Diners Club Travel Tools mobile app to help you find offers when travelling.
The following New Zealand hotels are a part of the program:
- Blanket Bay, Glenorchy
- Treetops Lodge & Estate, Rotorua
- Sofitel Queenstown Hotel & Spa, Queenstown
- The Farm at Cape Kidnappers, Hawke’s Bay
- The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs, Matauri Bay
- Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour, Auckland
- Azur Lodge, Queenstown
You should continue to receive points and status with any parent hotel loyalty programs too, unlike when using other online travel booking sites.
The key benefits typically are:
- An on-property benefit, often $100 USD in credit per stay, or other privilege
- Early check-in and late check-out, whenever available
- Room upgrade if available
- Free breakfast for two
- Free Wi-Fi
Book a two-night stay at Blanket Bay with your Diners Club and receive lunch for two, another lunch or dinner for two to the value of US$100, and early check-in and late check-out subject to availability
- See where Diners Club cards are accepted around the world by exploring this map.
- The Diners Club customer service team can be reached at 0800 346 377, or from outside New Zealand, +64 9 359 7796
Summing up – the Diners Club Credit Card
Ironically, Diners Club in New Zealand has a heap of benefits, and is a very useful card – except using it as a credit card to earn points.
I wouldn’t bother with this card for the Club Rewards program, and I only applied for the card personally for the ability to trial its varying travel related features.
The Diners Club Credit Card is likely to appeal most to those who travel frequently and can see some value in the complimentary lounge access, and the associated dining, hotel and shopping benefits.
Thankfully you can analyse all these benefits before applying for the card, to determine whether you’ll see return for the annual fee.
The ability to secure complimentary lounge access for a supplementary cardholder for only $40 extra per year may also appeal to some.
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