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When cashback sites really aren’t worth the trouble

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I have decided that it is about time I reviewed the new Virgin Little Red domestic services, from Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Manchester to Heathrow.

A flight has now been booked, so look out for my thoughts in a couple of weeks.

Being the good little money saver that I am, I booked the flight via the Virgin Atlantic link on Quidco. And this is what I got back:

This is a tracking receipt for your recent purchase through Quidco.

Date: 25th May 2013 16:30:18

Retailer: Virgin Atlantic (Avg payment speed 5 weeks)

Purchase Amount: £8.00

Cashback Amount: £0.08

Booking flights, especially cheap ones, via cashback sites is a bit of a swizz. The airlines will generally deduct all taxes and surcharges from the amount you get paid on. This is just about acceptable for Government-imposed taxes, but there is no excuse at all for not paying out on the fuel surcharge. After all, my flight cost substantially more than £8!

I suppose 8p is better than nothing – although you need to have a pretty low value on your time to justify clearing cookies, opening up Quidco, finding Virgin Atlantic, clicking through etc (plus opening and deleting all the Quidco emails about tracking, payment etc) to find 8p a good return.

HFP Virgin Atlantic Rewards credit card

How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (September 2021)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Virgin Points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.

You can choose from two official Virgin Atlantic credit cards (apply here, one has a bonus of 30,000 Points until 15th October 2021):

Virgin Rewards credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard

The UK’s most generous free Visa or Mastercard at 0.75 points / £1 Read our full review

Virgin Rewards Plus credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

30,000 points bonus and the most generous non-Amex for day to day spending Read our full review

You can also earn Virgin Points from various American Express cards – and these have sign-up bonuses too.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold is FREE for a year and comes with 30,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 30,000 Virgin Points:

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

Until 2nd November 2021, there is a special offer on The Platinum Card from American Express.

You will receive a sign-up bonus of 60,000 Amex points which converts into 60,000 Virgin Points.

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Virgin Points

(Want to earn more Virgin Points?  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.)

Comments (5)

  • LC says:

    Hi Raffles, how much did you pay for the flight with all the surcharges etc?

    • Rob says:

      £53 one way. Going up on BA as I can’t face the Servisair lounge in Terminal 1 …. and I only get that via Priority Pass as Virgin Silver gives no lounge access.

  • James says:

    But the fuel surcharges are imposed on the airline by the fuel companies and outside their control, it’s not part of the cost of the flight at all.

    • callum says:

      Of course they aren’t! Fuel companies have no right to dictate such a thing, nor would they remotely care how the airline charges its passengers – they get paid the same either way.

    • Rob says:

      That is not correct. BA buys its jet fuel in the same way you buy petrol, from the tanks at LHR at current market price. There is no surcharge.

      If you seriously believe this number relates to something, ponder why the surcharge on a return to the US is far lower than booking 2 one ways. Or why the US airlines have far lower surcharges to Ireland compared to the UK.

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