American Express, Virgin Money and Westpac are going strong on credit card sign-up offers this month, placing over half a million Velocity points on the table for eligible new customers who apply for a new Virgin Australia points-earning credit card this September.
Whether you're looking to maximise your points where American Express is accepted or are seeking a card for those times where it's not, here are this month's top Velocity Frequent Flyer credit card sign-up deals to get your journey off to a flying start.
1. American Express Platinum business, personal charge cards
Continuing to top the charts this month is the American Express Platinum Business Card with its offer of 120,000 bonus Velocity points – or for personal use, the standard version of the same card – the American Express Platinum Charge Card – with a similar deal of 80,000 bonus Velocity points.
Business owners can unlock their bonus when applying by November 30 2017 and spending at least $5,000 on purchases within the first two months, fetching 120,000 Membership Rewards Ascent Premium points, equal to 120,000 Velocity points when converted at a 1:1 rate.
Personal spenders can instead pocket 80,000 bonus Ascent Premium points when applying for the personal charge card and spending at least $1,500 within the first three months – also converting to Velocity at a 1:1 rate, giving 80,000 Velocity points.
(Until October 2 2017, the personal charge card offered 100,000 bonus Ascent Premium points, giving it its rank here for September.)
Cardholders can also earn up to three Ascent Premium points per dollar spent (equal to three Velocity points) via the personal card for an annual fee of $1,200, or up to two Ascent Premium points per dollar (worth two Velocity points) through the business card against a $1,500 annual fee.
2. Virgin Money's Virgin Australia Velocity High Flyer Card
Grab a Virgin Money Velocity High Flyer Visa Signature credit card and you could be rewarded with up to 80,000 bonus Velocity points.
In addition to the card's $289 annual fee, spending $3,000 or more in each of the first five months nets 16,000 bonus Velocity points per eligible month, being 80,000 Velocity points at the end of month five, if eligible.
You can also earn one Velocity point per dollar spent up to $8,000 per month, and 0.5 Velocity points per $1 thereafter: excluding on government payments (such as ATO spend) on which no points are earned.
3. American Express Explorer, Business Explorer credit cards
American Express also takes out the bronze this month with its personal American Express Explorer Card offering 50,000 Membership Rewards Gateway points (37,500 Velocity points) and the similar American Express Business Explorer Card promising 100,000 Gateway points, on-par with 75,000 Velocity points when converted at a 4:3 rate from the Gateway program.
You can earn that bonus when applying for the personal Explorer Card and spending at least $1,500 within the first three months, or when applying for the Business Explorer Card by November 30 2017 and spending a higher $3,000 within the first three months.
(Until October 2 2017, the personal Explorer card also offered 100,000 bonus Gateway points, giving it its rank here for September.)
An annual fee of $395 applies to both cards, which also crank out two Gateway points per dollar spent (equal to 1.5 Velocity points) on everything except government charges, on which you can earn the equivalent of 0.375 Velocity points per dollar spent.
4. American Express Velocity Platinum Card
Prefer a direct-earning Velocity American Express credit card, rather than having to transfer points across manually? The American Express Velocity Platinum Card could be just what you're looking for, with an offer of 50,000 bonus Velocity points for eligible new customers, plus a free return Virgin Australia domestic flight each year, two Virgin Australia lounge passes and two visits to the AMEX Lounge at Sydney Airport.
There's a $375 annual fee to pay, with those bonus points yours when applying and spending at least $1,500 on purchases within the first three months, on which you'll also pile up 1.5 Velocity points per dollar spent on most transactions, uncapped.
That's boosted to 2.5 Velocity points per dollar when using the card to book Virgin Australia flights (in addition to the points you'd normally earn from flying), with government transactions such as ATO payments earning a reduced 0.5 Velocity points per dollar spent.
You can also earn 100 bonus Velocity status credits each year when spending at least $50,000/year on the card.
5. Westpac Altitude Black American Express, Mastercard credit cards
For an American Express card and a 'non-AMEX' card on the one account, check out Westpac's Altitude Black American Express + Mastercard combo, with its current sign-up offer of 80,000 bonus Altitude points and a reduced annual fee of $195 in the first year: but with a further 20,000 bonus Alttude points on the table as well, for customers who apply via Australian Business Traveller before October 26.
You'll earn the main bounty of 80,000 bonus Altitude points when you apply via this link by October 26 2017 and spend at least $5,000 on purchases within 90 days of approval – using either the American Express card, the Mastercard or a mixture of both – plus the extra 20,000 bonus Altitude points on card approval under Westpac's additional offer, which could allow customers to earn 100,000 bonus Altitude points, equal to 50,000 bonus Velocity points after a 2:1 conversion.
Choose 'Altitude Rewards' as your loyalty option and you'll also unlock 2.5 Altitude points (1.25 Velocity points) per dollar spent via the AMEX, uncapped, and 1.25 Altitude points (0.625 Velocity points) per dollar spent when using the Mastercard, except on ATO payments which don't earn points via either card.