American Express Membership Rewards has brought back its campaign for U.S.-based members, offering a 30% bonus on Membership Rewards transfers to Virgin Atlantic Flying Club.
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club has several sweet spots in terms of partner redemptions that members can take advantage of in conjunction with this Amex transfer promotion.
These transfer bonus campaigns are offered by Amex on a regular basis and after last month’s 15% bonus for Lifemiles, this 30% for Virgin appears to be the last transfer offer with a bonus for 2022.
The bonus for transfers will be available through December 29, 2022.
You can find the transfer option in your online Amex card account under Membership Rewards – Airline Transfers :
While it says that transfers can take up to 48 hours, my experience is that Amex to Virgin usually transfers instantly and is available in the account in less than a minute of refreshing by logging out and back in.
You can therefore check availability and put something on hold with a reservation agent and transfer the miles in real-time.
There is a special ‘sweet spot’ with Virgin Flying Club, namely redemptions with ANA All Nippon Airways in their fantastic First Class (access the reward chart here) between Japan and USA / European destinations:
In order to book ANA and many other partners, you need to call Virgin Flying Club as it’s not possible to book through the online search engine.
I previously managed to book a great ANA First Class award using Virgin miles from Los Angeles via Tokyo to Thailand, which I featured in our series Award Success:
IF you’re planning to use the miles for ANA flights I want to emphasize that they have recently increased their fuel surcharges massively as I’ve covered in a separate article:
Tickets issued by Virgin Atlantic will incur these fees unlike for example tickets issued by United or Lifemiles so that’s something to consider.
This conversion bonus is usually available 2-3x per year from Membership Rewards USA so that’s something to think about when considering if you should convert the points or not.
One huge benefit is that the transfer is instant, meaning you can call Virgin to check availability and set up a reservation while during the same call transferring the points and issuing the ticket within a couple of minutes.
Be prepared to wait quite some time on the phone though to get to a live agent. Sometimes I waited 20 minutes, sometimes over an hour.
This could be a fantastic opportunity for those with sufficient Amex points in their account to get themselves on the way to a nice First Class trip to/via Japan at probably the lowest mileage rates out there (should the country ever reopen to foreign visitors).
Keep in mind though that Virgin Flying Club will levy the full fuel surcharges and availability should be checked beforehand over the phone to make sure it matches with those displaying on star alliance availability tools such as United Mileage Plus.
These are the Terms & Conditions for this campaign:
Terms and Conditions for the Membership Rewards® program apply. Visit membershiprewards.com/terms for more information. Participating partners and available rewards are subject to change without notice.
The value of Membership Rewards points varies according to how you choose to use them. To learn more, go to www.membershiprewards.com/pointsinfo.
You must be enrolled in Virgin Atlantic Flying Club® in order to participate in this offer, visit https://flywith.virginatlantic.com/gb/en/flying-club.html to enroll. American Express is not responsible for availability of flight, accommodations or any other rewards in the Virgin Atlantic Flying Club. Once you have transferred Membership Rewards points, they become subject to the Terms and Conditions of Virgin Atlantic Flying Club and cannot be transferred back to your Membership Rewards program account. Taxes, fees, charges and surcharges, including airline surcharges, apply on Virgin Atlantic redemption flights and upgrades. See Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Terms and Conditions for details. Individual air carrier restrictions may apply. Minimum transfer is 1,000 Membership Rewards points. Redeem for this exclusive offer from 12:00 a.m. MT on 12/08/2022 to 11:59 p.m. MT on 12/29/2022 to receive 30% additional Virgin Points. Additional Virgin Points will be awarded at the time of transfer. Generally, transfers are immediate but please allow up to 72 hours for the transfer to be completed. POID:GFEL:0055