BIG NEWS: Major changes at Virgin Flying Club

Virgin Atlantic announced major changes to Flying Club at 2pm today which, on the face of it, appear to move it closer to British Airways Executive Club in terms of earning and burning.

Unfortunately I am, literally, on a beach and Anika is, literally, getting onto a plane.  I am therefore leaving it to you lot to analyse :-)

There will be a full article tomorrow.

You can see details of the changes to Virgin Flying Club by clicking here.

Here is the official Virgin statement:

“Our goal is to make Flying Club a key differentiator for Virgin Atlantic customers, through the value we offer with miles and by enhancing their Virgin Atlantic experience. As a long haul airline, we know that our members have different needs from a loyalty programme and, by reimagining each component of Flying Club, we ‘re making it more relevant and engaging.”

“The changes we’re making will mean that, whether a customer only travels long haul for a holiday every few years, or they travel frequently or on business, Flying Club will offer them great value and benefits that really make a difference to their experience with us. This is the first step in an exciting journey of change for Flying Club with many more enhancements in the works that we will be announcing through 2017.”

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

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  1. If you have reward seat booked for December but with the new rules I would need fewer miles, would the difference between refunded?

    • Stuart Ross says:

      The new “off-peak” Reward Flights only start from mid-January 2017. Check out the linked page on the Virgin Site,

    • Unlikely, because they wouldn’t charge you extra if it went the other way.

      You could cancel and rebook IF availability was still there but you are paying the fee.

  2. Londonbus says:

    I think this devaluation like Exec Club is a sign of rapidly improving margins in aviation – easier to get higher yielding customers. Wait for the next downturn..

  3. Will be interesting to see if the soft onboard product devalues like BA, ie less attractive food, drink, etc..

    • “This is the first step in an exciting journey of change for Flying Club with many more enhancements in the works that we will be announcing through 2017”

      Uhoh, there’s that “Enhancement” word..

      Buy on board food for economy pax???

  4. The flights I’m looking at are getting much more expensive by mid-November but it looks like I can still book at the old rate (80,000 miles) until then. I’m still 20,000 points short, however…

    I have Virgin Black Credit Card. Any idea whether if I pay a big tax bill and then clear my CC balance immediately my points will post to Virgin FC any earlier? Or do I still need to wait until the end of the month (which would be too late…).



  5. Must remember to check with my martial arts instructor when the grading dates are next May/June. I should be able to get away in the off peak time, but don’t want to get caught out and miss my next belt.

  6. Virgin has confirmed to me that the Hilton and IHG transfer options will remain and the conversion rates will not change. The same goes for all other partner earning and spending.

    • Excellent, thanks for confirming this with them, Rob.

    • +1 that’s what I was looking for too tnanks. Have just transfered 30k, will get my ISA cancelled for next time and will do thd tesco autoconvert again.

  7. Looks like the discounted Z fare Upper Class tier point earning rate has taken a hit. Previously it was 10TPs vs 12TPs for full-fare Upper. Now its 50% of full-fare Upper – 200TPs return vs 400 :-(

    I was generating some good TPs by taking advantage of the discounted Z fares ex EU (Cork and Shannon) so looks like it will now take longer to achieve Silver and Gold status using this method.

    • …so under the old rules, 4 x UC return Z-fare flights (4 x 10TPs rtn) got you Gold status (40TPs) but now you’ll need 5 returns (5 x 200TPs rtn) to reach 1,000TPs.

  8. As steadfast off-peak travellers, these changes are brilliant! Not having kids, I don’t travel during peak times so the amount of miles I’ll save is awesome!

    There’ll be a sting in the tail somewhere but at first glance, this looks pretty decent.

    Wonder what they’ll do with Miles Booster?

  9. Sebastian says:

    For me, whilst this isn’t pleasant news, it’s not as bad as the BA changes. To be honest, as I am someone who gets the PE upgrade X 2 once a year and then takes a UC return X 2 every 1.5/2 years, it’s kind of swings and roundabouts owing to the changes in miles in Economy. The only real killer for me is miles on economy fares (however, I am booking tickets next week, for Feb, if I pay by then will I still get the current rate?). That said, I am not certain with what is happening on the following:

    1) Taxes
    2) Reward Saver deals

    If anyone could clarify my questions it would be greatly appreciated!

  10. We knew this was due at some stage and I for one am pleasantly surprised. If the availability is there the new PE rates are great value. It is a kick in the balls for anyone looking to redeem in UC but that was always on the cards after BA made their changes. Definitely not as bad as it could have been.

  11. I assume the 2 economy bookings I have already made for after this date will now only earn at the new lower rate?

  12. Wetboy1uk says:

    The change in miles doesnt reqlly bother me but seems like there will be a significant increaee in taxes – would thia be correct?

    • Might mean the reasonable reward sales of 30% might be a thing of the past? Otherwise economy will be ridiculously cheap?

  13. Will Squires says:

    Are Hilton/IHG transfers unaffected?

  14. I was excited to see household accounts until I read they were restricted to gold only.

  15. Not the best news to get today…

    My questions are:

    1) Will the regular reward seat sales continue? I’ve booked all my reward redemptions in the sales in the past couple of years?
    2) Wonder if there will be changes on the way for the flying club credit cards. Would be nice if they changed the PE upgrade voucher to an any class voucher like the Lloyds Avios card.
    3) If I have flights booked now at current prices, will I need to pay the new redemption prices if I wanted to change the dates?
    4) Any news on the other ‘enhancements’?

  16. TGLoyalty says:

    Sticking with virgin

    Virgin Red advertised a 10% bonus for 1st time Tesco converters anyone whose converted before do any and get a bonus?

    • Not sure. Even the app bonus was targeted – I didn’t have it. We need to wait another week I think until Clubcard vouchers go out.

      • Tesco Vouchers in my account already…. no sign of any bonus across Virgin/BA/Avios

        • Apparently…’The promotion was between 01st August – 16th Sep. We had no other Tesco promotion after, I’m sorry to disappoint you.’

          I thought the Virgin Red promotion ran until the end of October…but can’t find any record of it now.

  17. Is it saying that we can book at the current rates until 12 November (to fly later) or only fly at the current rates until 12 November? (I think it says the changes are introduced then?)

  18. Paul Irving says:

    What would happen if I book a flight now, then move the dates after 13th November, would I need to pay the new amount of miles?

  19. Thomas Lewis says:

    I’ve been saving my points for ages with a view to using them next year for LA for two people.

    Currently at 125k point ……. unsure if this actually helps me or not but i really hope they do continue with the reward seat sales!!