Norwegian Reward now offering free flights and upgrades – and new US routes

Norwegian doesn’t sleep.

On the contrary, the amount of press releases landing in my inbox is pretty impressive for a relatively small airline which hasn’t been on the radar of frequent flyers for very long.

We covered their loyalty program here.  Even though it’s a revenue based earning and spending loyalty programme, there are decent benefits for frequent flyers and occasional leisure travellers can use their CashPoints to get money off their next flight.

787 Dreamliner at LGW small

The problem with revenue-based loyalty programmes, unfortunately, is that they aren’t very exciting.  CashPoints is a rebate programme – the more you spend, the more cash you get off a future flight.  There’s nothing wrong with that, but you can’t argue that it lacks the allure of a ‘free flight in First Class’ that Avios can offer.

Norwegian has woken up to this, and is offering free long-haul flights and upgrades.   This is a temporary offer based on your travel between now and the end of 2017, for redemption next year.

It is called ‘Limited Edition Rewards’ and this is how it works:

To receive a free long-haul flight – passengers must have flown 20 round trips (40 one way flights) and earned at least 3,000 CashPoints between 1st January and 31st December 2017.

To receive a free long-haul upgrade – passengers who have flown 10 round trips (20 one way flights) on Flex short-haul or long-haul tickets between 1st January and 31st December 2017 will receive a free upgrade to Premium on a long-haul flight in 2018. (Stay tuned for my review of Norwegian’s Premium product).  The upgrade will be valid for tickets booked in the cheapest LowFare category. 

Here is the small print taken from the Norwegian website:

  • The travel period for the free long-haul ticket and Premium upgrade is the entire year of 2018, except for the following dates:

1st to 15th January 2018, 21st March to 3rd April 2018, 15th June to 26th August 2018, 14th to 31 December 2018

  • The free ticket is personal and may only be used by the Reward member/customer who earned it.
  • The ticket is a round trip LowFare+ ticket to any of Norwegian’s destinations and includes seat reservation and luggage. Meals are also included on long haul flights.
  • The ticket follows the same fee, change and cancellation restrictions as ordinary LowFare tickets.
  • The trip must start and end at the same airport in the country in which the member resides.

More information can be found here.

Note that there is only a small booking window to lock in your free flight.  You cannot book until 1st January 2018 and you MUST make your booking by 31st January.  Any upgrade or free flight vouchers not redeemed by 31st January will be lost.

And new UK routes …..

This is also a good place to squeeze in the fact that Norwegian has also announced a couple of new US routes from Gatwick.

Chicago will launch on 25th March 2018 and Austin will launch on 27th March 2018.   This follows recent announcements of the first non-US long-haul routes to Singapore and Buenos Aires.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for the latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios from current offers and promotions.)

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Comments

  1. OT – if you want early access to the Virgin Trains East Coast 1st class seat sale (officially launching 12 July at 10am) see here – http://saveecrewards.co.uk/vtec-sale (see if there’s any availability now – I’ve booked a few trips to Leeds at £20 each way, but if there’s not then check back on the official launch date in case they’ve released more).

    Vaguely on-topic, but 40 flights to receive a free trip would not be an incentive to me (although I’d take it if I happened to qualify for it). You only need 30 flights to get gold on Flying Blue which to me would be more valuable (if I was still a regular on KLM, which I used to be when living in the regions). 50 flights on BA gets you silver (assuming you don’t qualify on tier points).

    Perhaps they could add some low value rewards, e.g. every 5 flights get a complimentary drink or similar?

    • Yes, but comparing to the number of flights needed on other carriers (for status) overlooks the possible price difference per flight… What is the average cost of a short haul flight on BA vs Norwegian and how much does that Silver cost? 🙂

      • I guess the point is I’d never see taking 40 flights to earn one as an incentive, but I may choose Norwegian if the prices/schedule suits me. So this is a bit like a train company offering Nectar points, it has no influence on my decision to travel them, but of course if I qualify I’ll claim my free flight.

        My favourite use of Avios at the moment is short minute flights booked either the day before or occasionally on the day. It’s great if your destination is not fixed and just want to go somewhere on a weekend (coupled with Hilton/IHG points)

    • Looks like VTEC have decided to put their sale page up early saying the code for it had been been leaked: https://www.virgintrainseastcoast.com/first-class-seat-sale?utm_source=headforpoints&utm_medium=comments

      Same offers as I discovered yesterday but now they’re straight out of the horse mouth so to speak.

  2. Seems that you have to fly an awful lot. I’m not sure if this really helps with the lack of “aspirational” value in the scheme. To be flying that amount in the first place it surely is likely to be work related only? Looking forward to that review though. Norwegian may be key in my plan to dump BA altogether.

  3. OT. This is completely unrelated but I was hoping someone on here might know the rules regarding being denied boarding. It’s a bit of a long story but basically BA did not let me on a flight to Glasgow yesterday at London City. I got a seat on another flight just over an hour later but I’m wondering if I should have been offered any compensation? Nothing was mentioned at the time but a few articles online seem to imply I should have been given information regarding this. Any help will be appreciated!

    • the real harry1 says:

      no compo if they got you to your destination no more than 3 hrs late arriving

      • My understanding is that less than 3 hours doesn’t get you anything, although BA should have coughed up refreshment vouchers I imagine. There must be some come back though – if flight A at 6pm is £200 and flight B at 8pm is £100, there must be something to stop BA selling unlimited £200 tickets and then moving people to the cheaper service …..

    • I think you’re entitled to 50% of the compensation = 125 EUR. You were denied boarding on your flight but got to your destination with a delay under 2 hours.

  4. Slightly similar tale of woe for me today – denied boarding by Flybe because I forgot my photo ID….OK my fault, but many airlines inc BA don’t even ask for photo ID so ever so slightly annoying. Am I due any compensation or refund at least of APD ?

  5. flyforfun says:

    How soon do Norwegians “cash points” accrue? I bought one leg and hoped to get a few pounds off my next leg, but nothing has appeared as yet. Does the flight have to be flown? Just wondering as the tickets are non-refundable there I thought you’d get the cash back straight away.

    • ankomonkey says:

      Only ever flown 4 flights with Norwegian, but cash points accrued within a week of flying.

  6. Glasgow23 says:

    O/T but I have recently booked a long-haul flight with Alitalia – I would normally avoid but it was a ridiculously good deal. What rights do I have if they become insolvent? Does EU261 apply or am I left to speak to my credit card company etc? Thanks!

    • What makes you worried about them??

      • the real harry1 says:

        gone into administration & filed for bankruptcy is US (to protect slots)
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-39780604

        • Apparently Etihad’s loan to Alitalia is secured on its Heathrow slots. With only 3 Heathrow slot pair at present, Etihad is obviously very keen to get its hands on these. It would probably mean the end of Alitalia from Heathrow, though, irrespective of whether the airline survives – which, in one form or another, it clearly will because they almost always do. Sabena and Malev excepted.

        • the real harry1 says:

          didn’t Etihad also own 49% of Alitalia? or is that the same thing?

          nearly worthless in any case

        • Same thing. They bought the equity and then lent the company money, secured on the slots (allegedly).

      • The flights are OK, but everything else about them is a total joke.

    • If they were to go bust, you can just phone your credit card company and they will sort it, as it will be over £100.

      • Glasgow23 says:

        But presumably nothing beyond that (for hotels, replacement flights etc.)?

        • No, but thats why you buy travel insurance for bankruptcy/insolvancy mitigation.

  7. random says:

    CFO resigned recently from Norwegian – just before Q2 results. Should be interesting to see if there are so skeletons to be exposed…

  8. Warning – this is just another complaint line!
    “free flight in First Class that Avios can offer” ? I’m not knocking it as the discount is still very significant but at £560+ taxes and fuel ‘surcharges’ a pop it’s not “free”

    On the other hand, I am very very pleased with my shiny F ticket for my gf and I to KUL in August (thanks to Raffles 🙂