Virgin America Status Match Extented: American, Southwest & United Included

Virgin America has decided to extend the status match campaign that was suppose to come to an end on April 20, 2013, until the end of June and include Southwest in addition to United and American to the carriers whose status they are matching. Surprisingly Delta match is still missing.

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Virgin America matches to their Elevate Silver and Gold levels depending what status you have with American, Southwest or United. You can access this offer here.

Email us at statusmatch@virginamerica.com with your Elevate number and oneof the following:

  • A copy or screenshot of your most recent mileage summary showing your name and current elite level.
  • Or, a copy of your membership card that identifies your name and current elite level in the United Air Lines or American Airlines frequent flyer program.

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United 1K and Platinum, American EXP’s & Southwest’s Companion Pass members are matched to Elevate Gold. United Gold and Silver, American Platinum and Gold & Southwest A-List Preferred and A-List memvers are matched to Elevate Silver.

If you ask my personal opinion, the United Gold and AA Platinum should have both received Elevate Gold match instead of Silver.

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The initial match is valid until June 30, 2013, and Virgin has an offer extending the status until the end of 2013 by earning certain number of status points. You need to earn 12K status points ($2400 in base airfare spent) for extending the Gold status or 8000 status points ($1600 in base airfare spent). There are lower qualification requirement for those that have Virgin America branded credit card.

Here are the benefits of the Silver and Gold Elevate statuses:

virgin-america-elevate-benefits-1

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The main benefit for me would be the upgrades to Main Cabin Select that includes complimentary food and booze. You could check one complimentary bag at Silver level and 3 at the Gold one.

If you do any travel in Australia, the complimentary Virgin Australia lounge access could come handy at Gold level. I flew Melbourne to Sydney on Virgin Australia and the service and product was just fine. The complimentary lounge access would have made it even better.

The problem that I have with the program is on the redemption side. The “value” of the miles is capped around 2 cents when used for Virgin America flights. There is no fixed award chart. The number of the Evelate points required is entire dependent of the airfare. You can read more about this here.

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You can also use points with Virgin Australia and Virgin Atlantic. You are required to pay for very high fuel surcharges on these two airlines. You can read about more these two partners here.

Conclusion

I will most likely do a status match that I would purely use for complimentary lounge access with Virgin Australia. The Virgin America’s product is good, but the Elevate program is not a very good one with partner awards.

Here are the full terms and conditions of this offer:

The following restrictions will apply to Elevate Status Benefits available during the Status Match period through June 30, 2013: a) Matched members will not receive 25% off personal discount codes. b) Matched members will receive one complimentary day pass to the Virgin America airport lounge at LAX. c) Matched members may not have access to all reciprocal benefits on Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia that require the member to present their membership card.

Click here for the full terms and conditions of the Elevate Status Match offer.

1. Please allow between 7 to 14 days from application to update your Elevate status, and please note that incomplete applications may not be considered.

2. Reduced status points requirement to retain matched status through 2013 is applicable for members who apply for, and are approved for, the Low Annual Fee Virgin America Visa Signature Card. Click here to see the specific details of the Virgin America Visa Signature Card offer.

3. Based on the standard Elevate earn of 5 Elevate points per $1 spent on the base fare. Example of a round-trip flight from San Francisco (SFO) to New York (JFK) in Main Cabin Select and round-trip flight from San Francisco (SFO) to Las Vegas (LAS) in First Class: for departure on flight VX12 on November 9, 2012 and return on VX25 on November 11, 2012, base fare is $1859+taxes, with 9,295 status points earned; for departure on flight VX908 on November 23, 2012 and return on VX901 on November 26, 2012, base fare is $722+ taxes, with 3,610 status points earned.

4. Based on the standard Elevate earn of 5 Elevate points per $1 spent on the base fare. Example of a round-trip flight from Los Angeles (LAX) to Seattle (SEA) in Main Cabin and a round-trip flight from San Francisco (SFO) to New York (JFK) in Main Cabin: for departure on flight VX797 on November 7, 2012 and return on flight VX780 on November 10, 2012, base fare is $480+taxes, with 2,400 status points earned; for departure on flight VX26 on November 24, 2012 and return on flight VX27 on November 27, 2012, base fare is $586+taxes, with 2,930 status points earned.

5. Based on the standard Elevate earn of 5 Elevate points per $1 spent on the base fare. Example of a round-trip flight from New York (JFK) to San Francisco (SFO) in Main Cabin Select: for departure on flight VX30 on November 12, 2012 and return on flight VX11 on November 19, 2012, base fare is $1,859+taxes, with 9,295 status points earned.

6. Based on the standard Elevate earn of 5 Elevate points per $1 spent on the base fare. Example of a round-trip flight from San Francisco (SFO) to Boston (BOS) in Main Cabin: for departure on flight VX350 on November 12, 2012 and return on flight VX357 on November 17, 2012, base fare is $638+taxes, with 3,190 status points earned.

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