Last chance to get 10,000 – 25,000 Virgin miles with the Virgin credit cards

Just a quick reminder that Friday 31st October is the last day to apply for the current special offer on the Virgin Atlantic Flying Club credit cards.

Here is a quick overview of the Virgin credit cards. If some of the text sounds familiar, it is because I have cut and pasted some of it from the last Virgin promotion!

Virgin Flying Club offer two different credit card options. There is a free ‘White’ card and a £140 fee ‘Black’ card. Each comes in the standard MBNA double-pack of an American Express and a Visa.

Unlike the British Airways American Express cards, MBNA is happy for you to have BOTH of the Virgin cards. Whilst I would not recommend this, I know that some HFP readers in the past have applied for both at the same time and received both. This does put you under some pressure to hit the spending targets on both cards simultaneously.

The free card is the Virgin Atlantic White Credit Card.

There is NO annual fee with this card, and the sign up bonus is 10,000 Virgin Flying Club miles. The usual bonus is a paltry 3,000 miles and it never goes above 10,000 miles so this is as good as it gets.

You will receive 3,000 miles immediately and a further 7,000 miles when you spend just £1,000 in the first 90 days. Should you decide to keep the card, you will earn 1 mile per £1 spent on the Amex and 0.5 miles per £1 spent on the Visa.

My full review of Virgin White is here. The application page is here.

The representative APR of the card is 17.9% variable.

Virgin credit card bonus

The more generous fee-carrying card is the Virgin Atlantic Black Credit Card.

This card comes with an annual fee of £140, with a sign-up bonus of 25,000 Virgin Flying Club miles. The standard offer on this card was recently increased to 18,500 miles, so the additional bonus is only 6,500.

You will receive 18,500 miles immediately and a further 6,500 miles when you spend £2,000 in the first 90 days.

The earnings rate for the Black card is EXCELLENT. You earn 2 miles per £1 on the American Express and a whopping (compared to the competition) 1 mile per £1 on the Visa.

My full review of Virgin Black is here. The application page is here.

The representative APR of the card is 52.0% variable including the fee, assuming a £1200 credit limit.

And vouchers too ….

There are also two long-term incentives available with the Virgin cards. The White card offers an upgrade voucher (from Economy to Premium Economy only) for a miles redemption when you spend £10,000, and a second at £20,000. The Black card offers the same vouchers at £5,000 and £10,000.

Both cards also offer what I consider a worthless incentive – a voucher at £15,000 (White) or £7,500 (Black) for a free companion seat (excluding heavy taxes) when you buy a full fare ticket in any class. Who buys full fare tickets, except corporates?

More information on these can be found in the reviews which I link to above.

Terms & Conditions

The key facts you need to remember before you apply are:

The application deadline is this Friday, 31st October, and you have 90 days from application to achieve the £1,000 / £2,000 target

MBNA does NOT offer a pro-rata refund when you cancel your card. Your £140 fee for the Black card is a sunk cost. You are therefore (effectively) paying £140 for the additional 15,000 miles on the Black card, since you could get 10,000 miles for £nothing by getting the White card instead.

How can you earn more miles?

It is very easy to earn further Virgin Flying Club miles to top up your account. The options are numerous:

Transfers from Tesco Clubcard (at a higher rate than BA, £2.50 = 625 Flying Club miles)

Transfers from American Express Membership Rewards (1:1) – transfers from Amex to Virgin are instantaneous as well, once your accounts are linked, unlike transfers to BA

Transfers from Heathrow Rewards (1:1)

Transfers from most hotel programmes, including Starwood Preferred Guest

There are also some hotels which credit to Virgin even though they do not credit to Avios.

Car rentals – Virgin offers a generous 1,000 miles per Hertz rental for example

Receive 5,000 Virgin miles for taking out a Virgin Money ISA

The ‘1 mile per £1’ rate on the Black Visa also allows you to run up miles very quickly

It is also worth remembering that you can transfer Virgin Flying Club miles into Hilton HHonors points (at 2:3) and IHG Rewards Club points (at 1:1). Getting the free Virgin White card may be a way of giving your Hilton or IHG account a boost. I would be wary of paying £140 for the Black card, however, as I don’t think 37,500 Hilton points or 25,000 IHG Rewards Club points are worth that much.

Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points and do not consider interest rates, service levels or any impact on your credit history.

(Want to earn more Virgin Flying Club miles?  Click here to see recent articles on Virgin Atlantic, Little Red and Flying Club, and click here for the latest news on earning and spending other airline and hotel points.)

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Comments

  1. How long do the points take to post? Somehow I have received 4000 points after spending £1000. So I wonder if they got it wrong

    • The bonus is split out – you get the normal bonus (3,000) applied at £1,000 spend and then the promotional 7,000 when you hit 90 days.

  2. As soon as they introduce a companion voucher, avios are dead in the water

  3. I’m new to point obsessing, but have found it very easy to build up avios by starting to use my clubcard, getting all of my fuel at tesco (about £100-£200 a week of it), shopping online via avios.com and getting the BA and Gold AMEX cards. A couple of months have lead to almost 100k Avios, which is a good start I hope.

    Would it be unwise to try and split my efforts between Virgin and Avios? I started collecting after almost starting a new role which would involve a lot of travel, but that’s not happening any more, So I’ll travel relatively infrequently (a few times per year) and for pleasure purposes.

    • ankomonkey says:

      I did exactly that, ending up with nearly 300k VS and over 400k Avios, both with a particular route in mind. Then VS pulled the route. While the approach can work for some, it can have risk – I now have 300k VS miles with no obvious use…

  4. If I am accepted for the white card this time, does this disqualify me from receiving the introductory miles on the black card at a later date? I wasn’t sure if you can receive two sign-up bonuses? Thanks

    • As Raffles metions in the article, MBNA treat the free and paid-for version of their cards as separate products so there’s no issue applying for the black card at a later date.

  5. Is the upgrade voucher for a return flight or just a one-way? Thanks

  6. Coming to the end of my first year with this card. Took it out for the great bonus miles, and a big fan of using the contactless Visa, in particular, for points earning on non-AMEX spend.

    Seems hard to justify keeping it for a second year, however. I can’t see any sort of renewal bonus points offers. Anyone been offered anything to encourage them to stay when they asked to cancel?

    I know that MBNA don’t officially allow bonuses for subsequent applications, but I’m guessing after a sufficiently long period without the card you stand a good chance of getting the bonus again. Any thoughts on how long that may be?

  7. Has this offer ended already? I don’t see any mention of the bonus 7000 miles on the website

  8. Does anyone know when the offer will return?