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Virgin Red is the Virgin Group’s Rewards Club that allows members to earn and redeem points through flights, experiences, and shopping retailers.
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Virgin Red is the Virgin Group’s Rewards Club that allows members to earn and redeem points through flights, experiences, and shopping retailers. It originally debuted in the U.K. in February 2021 and was rolled out to the U.S. late fall of 2021.
Virgin Red isn’t replacing their frequent flyer program Flying Club, but rather the two programs will co-exist and you have the ability to link them together to pool your points.
How to Earn Virgin Red Points
There are a multitude of ways to earn Virgin Red points through credit cards, transfer partners, hotel stays, flights, and retail partners.
Virgin Red Transfer Partners
You may be familiar with Virgin Atlantic Flying Club being a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards, Amex Membership Rewards and Citi ThankYou points. These flexible points all transfer to Flying Club at a 1:1 ratio, giving you lots of ways to build up a pool of Virgin points through credit card welcome offers.
On top of these partners, there’s also a relatively new flexible point currency on the market as of June 2021, Bilt Rewards, that transfers to Virgin Red at a 1:1 ratio. Bilt Rewards are a point currency that let you earn points on rent without any fees. So, now, you can earn points for flights by paying what’s likely each month’s largest expense.
Virgin Atlantic Credit Card
You can earn Virgin points by opening the Virgin Atlantic World Elite Mastercard®. However, since Virgin Atlantic has so many bank transfer partners, you’re better off earning flexible points through cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, American Express® Gold Card (Rates & Fees) or the Citi Premier Card and transferring them to Virgin Atlantic when you’ve found a flight you want to book.
Virgin has a total of five hotels that can earn you points from your stay. You can earn 1,000 Virgin Red points per room during a stay at one of their hotels in Chicago, Dallas, Nashville, New Orleans and Las Vegas. In order to earn your points, make sure to book directly with the hotel and have the reservation under the same name as your Virgin Red account.
Flights on Virgin Atlantic
You can also earn points in the most traditional way – by flying with Virgin Atlantic. Depending on the flight distance and the fare class, you can earn between 3,457 and 43,632 points per flight. Here is the breakdown by fare class and flight.
- Economy Flights
- 3,457-10,371 (New York to London)
- 5,454-16,362 (Los Angeles to London)
- Premium Economy Flights
- 6,914-13,828 (New York to London)
- 10,908-21,816 (Los Angeles to New York)
- Upper Class
- 13,828-27,656 (New York to London)
- 21,816-43,632 (Los Angeles to London)
Virgin Red Retail Partners
Shopping at Virgin Red’s retail partners can earn you between one and five points on every dollar you spend. The partnerships can change, but these are the current retailers that you can shop with to earn points.
- Home Depot
- Old Navy
Ways to Redeem Virgin Red Points
Once you’ve earned a good chunk of points and you’re ready to redeem them, there’s a number of different ways to do so.
Book Flights with Virgin Red Points
Redeeming your Virgin points for flights can be one way to get great value for your points. Through Virgin Atlantic’s airline partnerships, you can not only book Virgin Atlantic flights, but also flights on Delta Air Lines, Air France, KLM, ANA, Air New Zealand, Air China, Hawaiian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways and Virgin Australia. Not all of these are a valuable use of points.
While Virgin Atlantic’s award chart for its own flights looks reasonable, it does have a catch. Virgin Atlantic passes on high surcharges which can quickly negate the value of the points. However, there are some sweet spots using Virgin points that can make for worthwhile redemptions. Virgin Atlantic has a unique award chart for each partner airline that can help you figure out where the value is.
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ANA First Class to Japan
When booking an award flight directly through ANA, you’re required to book a round trip itinerary. However when booking through Virgin Atlantic, you can book a one-way trip for half the cost. From the western U.S. to Japan, you can fly ANA First Class for 55,000 Virgin points and 60,000 Virgin points from the Eastern U.S.
Delta One Suites
Delta is known for charging preposterous amounts of miles to redeem a seat in their first class suites, Delta One. Instead of spending up to 320,000 Delta Skymiles for the experience, you can redeem far fewer Virgin points.
Flying from the eastern US to the UK during peak season would only cost you 57,500 Virgin points. At most, if flying from the western US, you’d pay 77,500 Virgin points. Still far less than what Delta is charging. The fares get even cheaper if you’re flying to a European city outside of the U.K. A flight from Boston to Amsterdam costs just 50,000 points.
Points Plus Money
If you don’t have enough points to redeem the full cost of a flight, you can use Virgin Red’s Points Plus Money tool to subsidize the cost of your flight and pay for some of it using points. As long as you have 3,000 Virgin points in your account, you can redeem the points in increments of 3,000 to help lower the cost of your flight. This tool is only available on Virgin Atlantic operated flights, so you won’t be able to use it for partner airline flights.
Virgin Limited Edition
Virgin Limited Edition is a collection of unique retreats and luxury hotels that you can redeem points for. Stays start at 120,000 points per night, so these are not a realistic redemption for most people. But, if you’ve managed to accumulate hundreds of thousands of Virgin points, you can stay at a private game reserve in South Africa, a luxury safari camp in Kenya, a vineyard in South Africa or a mountainous resort in North Africa.
Virgin Experience Gifts
Virgin points can be redeemed for Virgin Experience Gifts in many major US cities like New York, Austin, San Francisco, Washington D.C., Miami, Boston and Los Angeles. Some of the activities include date nights, food and drink tours and masterclasses starting at 8,500 Virgin points.
Through Virgin Red, you can book a four night sailing excursion with Virgin Voyages. For 345,000 points, you can reserve a cabin to travel between Miami and the Bahamas with all food, basic beverages, wifi and exercise classes included.
Virgin Red offers the opportunity to donate Virgin points to Carbon Engineering, a technology that is critical to solving climate change. You can donate 5,000 Virgin points to help advance the technology.
Virgin Unite is a non-profit foundation that collaborates with entrepreneurs and organizations to create opportunities for a better world. You can donate your Virgin points in increments of 1,000.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between Virgin Atlantic Flying Club and Virgin Red?
Flying Club is Virgin Atlantic’s frequent flyer program where members can earn and spend Virgin points on flights and upgrades. You can also earn status through Flying Club. Virgin Red, on the other hand, is Virgin’s group-wide rewards club where you can earn points to redeem on things beyond flights like experiences in major cities, stays at luxurious properties or even donations to nonprofits and green initiatives.
What happens to the points in my Flying Club account if I sign up for Virgin Red?
Technically, your Flying Club account and your Virgin Red account are separate and your points will be separate unless you choose to combine them. You can combine them by linking your accounts together within the Virgin Red app.
How do I sign up for Virgin Red?
You can sign up for Virgin Red on the Virgin Red homepage.
Having Virgin Red as a new way to earn and redeem points is great news. Not only does it give members a way to earn points faster through shopping at specific retailers, but it’s also opening up doors to relatively new transfer partners like Bilt. While there may be some questionable ways to redeem your points (virtual escape room, anyone?), there are some sweet spot flight redemptions to be found with partner airlines.
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Cards in This Article
Chase Ultimate Rewards® Points
after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.
Membership Rewards® Points
after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months. Terms apply.
Citi ThankYou Points
after making $4,000 in purchases with your card within the first 3 months of account opening.
Editors Note: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.