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Virgin Australia to give Velocity status credits on reward flights

By David Flynn     Filed under: Virgin Australia, Velocity Frequent Flyer

Virgin Australia will offer Velocity status credits on reward seats for flights from January 13, when the airline switches over to its new Sabre booking system.

The deal encompasses standard Any Seat Award bookings as well as travel using the more limited number of Reward seats.

"For the first time in Australia our Frequent Flyer members will be able to earn Status Credits while travelling on a Reward Seat, giving frequent travellers the ability to earn while they burn" said Velocity Frequent Flyer Chief Executive Officer Neil Thompson.

Earning status credits on Any Seat Award travel will be ongoing, while a promotion running until June 30 will let travellers earn status credits on rewards seats at the same rate as on commercial flights.

To be eligible for this offer, members must book and travel on a Virgin Australia (VA) marketed and operated flight in a Reward Seat Fare Class (X, P or Z) between 13 January and 30 June 2013. 

"We find that travellers go through a period of accumulating points, particularly on corporate flights, and then go into 'burning mode'" Thompson told Australian Business Traveller. "But of course burning doesn't currently earn status credits."

Thompson promises the six-month promotion is one of several treats that Virgin Australia has planned for 2013.

"I'm keen to roll out a number of things that we'll try and see what the reaction in the market is" he told Australian Business Traveller. "You'll start to see some more one-offs and some special things that I can't talk about today" he teased.

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About David Flynn

David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.


Have something to say? Post a comment now!

1 on 8/1/13 by romaau

Awesome. I always thought airlines should reward people for flying on points.

2 on 8/1/13 by chrisjrn

This is great news. Combined with earning SCs for each sector of a connecting flight, this is going to be a VERY cheap way of getting or retaining status.

For example, some Business Class fares on Hobart to Sydney will earn 80SC – that's 40SC for HBA-MEL and 40SC for MEL-SYD for about 21000 points spent. And of course you can spend these as points+pay as well.

Looks like I'll be getting back Platinum this year quite easily.

3 on 8/1/13 by sdwylie

Why is this an innovation for Australia? Qantas has offered this since they started offering Any Seat Awards...

1 on 8/1/13 by philbuhagiar

They are offering points and status credits on Classic Award seats (until June 30) - Qantas only offer these on Any Seat Awards. 

2 on 8/1/13 by KG

Puzzled why sdwylie has all this "negatives" on his post.... He is correct, nothing new in awarding sc's for any seats awards and lets be honest, doing a promotion for a short while to get some attention i.e also awarding sc's on normal awards is also not groundbreaking, yet still welcome obviously. (is it because it appears from his comment that he is "criticizing" ausbt for bringing this as a novel new feature?).

1 on 8/1/13 by Al

KG, I agree that all those 'downvotes' are a bit of an over- reaction. I don't think they have anything to do with any implied criticism of AusBT, it was probably just that sdwylie didn't realise that this promotion by Virgin applies to their equivalent of Qantas 'Classic Award seats', and that this article wasn't specifically about just Any Seat Awards.

4 on 8/1/13 by mackey

Will this include upgrades using point too?

5 on 8/1/13 by 444desiro

Report says 'any VA marketed flight', so I assume would this include international flights operated by Virgin?

1 on 8/1/13 by AusFlyer

That's normally what that would mean...

6 on 8/1/13 by Al

Another fantastic move by Virgin Australia!

7 on 8/1/13 by AirportAddict

Great stuff! If the promotion is running as a trial thing, it may mean that they have it as a permanent thing later on which would be a big bonus. 

8 on 8/1/13 by AusFlyer

Good on you Virgin... Now will Qantas come to the party too?

9 on 8/1/13 by AirportAddict

Is it right that the switch to Sabre will see all codes DJ, VA etc, become VA - all flight numbers will change to VA####?

1 on 8/1/13 by chrisjrn


10 on 8/1/13 by KG

Nice they will offer sc's on any seat award flights! Smart move to also do this for normal redemptions. I reckon QF will do a promotion soon as well (they have been having some double sc promotions already). 

I cannot think of any other airline rather that QF and soon VA who off sc's (or mileage) on award flights. Anybody knows about other airlines?

11 on 9/1/13 by tonywills

Qantas Any seat awards - what a joke - usually need to burn about 4 times the points to get a seat on the same flight as a classic reward. Try getting Business class classic award seats on practically any Qantas international flight!! Very rare indead. Don't go saving Qantas points for a Business class to Europe or the USA - you will be in Economy at best - or Cathay for many more points. You can risk waiting until the week that you are flying as Qantas sometimes open up last minute award seats that they haven't been able to sell.

Oh - be aware of the extremely annoying exclamation marks all over the Qantas award seat website that explain that your seat (usually on the long haul international sector) will be in Economy - even though you burn Business class points - for that you may get Business class fom Melbourne to Sydney - then Economy Sydney to LA or Singapore - lovely.

1 on 9/1/13 by moa999

But tonywills that is the point....

IF you want "anyseat" availability you (generally) pay a premium over the classic seat availability... Qantas FF are essentially converting your points to cash and buying a cash fare.

If you want a classic fare, or a cheaper anyseat fare you need to book well in advance or schedule around availability.

1 on 11/1/13 by tonywills

With Qantas there really is no point....

Thanks for the insightful update moa999. With 900,000 plus points in my account, I think I am aware of how the system works.

12 on 11/1/13 by SaltyJ

As Mackey asked, Can you find out if this includes using points for upgrades AUSTBT?

1 on 11/1/13 by Al

I don't think this would include situations where you use points for an upgrade SaltyJ and Mackey, as the article says "To be eligible for this offer, members must book and travel on a Virgin Australia (VA) marketed and operated flight in a Reward Seat Fare Class (X, P or Z)". Those are reward seats not upgrades, and I think I read somewhere (Twitter?) that you earn status credits only at the rate of your original pre-upgrade booking.

13 on 4/3/13 by dge898

I just took advantage of this. BNE - SYD return in  Business for myself and my wife earnt me 160 status points (family sharing is a bonus) so now I am not only Gold I am well on the way to maintaining it. Good deal Virgin.

14 on 16/7/13 by Thomas

Any news on whether this deal has been extended?


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