Virgin Atlantic offering card holders double points and upgrade vouchers for new bookings

Sep 15, 2020

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Virgin Atlantic has announced a lucrative offer for existing cardholders of its cobranded credit cards.

For all new bookings made with Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays through 31 October 2020 (for travel through to the end of schedule), Virgin Atlantic Rewards and Virgin Atlantic Rewards+ credit cardholders will receive double Flying Club miles when paying on their card. This means Rewards cardholders will receive 3 Flying Club miles per £1 spent and Rewards+ cardholders will earn 6 Flying Club miles per pound.

Related: Which Virgin Atlantic credit card is the better choice you?

For Rewards+ cardholders, the offer gets even better. If you spend £500 or more on a Virgin Atlantic or Virgin Holidays booking, you will earn a valuable upgrade voucher. This means you can upgrade a return flight from economy to Premium or Premium to Upper Class at any time during the next 24 months using the voucher. You will need to pay any additional fees, taxes and surcharges, such as the UK APD, which increases for premium classes.

Related: What you need to know about the new improvements to Virgin Atlantic credit cards

Looking at this in practice, if you were to book a Premium return cash ticket to New York (JFK) next summer for £582 per person paying with the Rewards+ credit card, you would earn 3,492 Flying Club miles for the credit card purchase plus the upgrade voucher to upgrade to its new Upper Class Suite both directions.

Note that you would need to pay a few hundred pounds extra in fees, taxes and surcharges, though this would still be a huge saving over the cash price of a business-class return to New York, which can be well over £1,500.

You would also earn approximately 7,000 Flying Club miles for taking the flights. Add this to the 3,492 Flying Club miles earned from the credit card offer and your approximate 10,500 Flying Club-mile haul would be worth around £125 by our most recent valuations. This value will help offset the overall additional cost of the fees, taxes and surcharges to upgrade to Upper Class.

Related: Lofty heights: A review of Virgin Atlantic’s Upper Class Suite on the A350 from London to New York

Virgin has confirmed to TPG that the double points and upgrade vouchers apply for any spend with Virgin Atlantic or Virgin Holidays. This means paying for the fees, taxes and surcharges would apply as well as purchasing a cash ticket, like the example above.

Is this very generous offer too good to be true? Well, there are some important things to note.

While the offer itself comes with few conditions, Virgin Atlantic’s current situation is far from ideal. While the airline intends to operate most of its route network by the end of this year following a COVID-19 shutdown, as of now, most destinations Virgin Atlantic flies to will not allow British travellers entry — including the United States.

This means that if you take advantage of this offer, depending on when your flight is booked for, you may need to change your destination or delay your travel until restrictions change. Additionally, while Virgin offers generous flexibility for new bookings, it has been one of the worst airlines to issue refunds as it tries to retain cash. Its financial situation remains uncertain, which is important to note if you are making bookings for travel well into next year.

Featured image by Nick Ellis/The Points Guy.

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