500 free Virgin Flying Club miles for installing their shopping toolbar

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Virgin Atlantic is offering 500 Flying Club miles for free to any member who downloads a special toolbar for their ‘Shops Away‘ shopping portal. This is double the number of miles they offered when they last ran this offer.  In theory you cannot do it again if you previously installed and uninstalled the toolbar, but who knows how good the Virgin IT is?!

Virgin Shops Away

As per their terms and conditions:

Download the Mile Finder tool before 14 May 2014 and earn 500 bonus miles. One time only bonus for downloading the Mile Finder. We reserve the right to remove the download bonus of 500 miles if you subsequently uninstall the Mile Finder

To access this offer, you need to go to the Shops Away page on the Flying Club website and click on ‘Download The Mile Finder’.  The miles appear to be added within 48 hours, looking at comments elsewhere.

(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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  1. Archie says:

    Shocked to see the 3rd daily email today was a naked advert for yachting business. The whole appeal to me of hfp is the impartial, candid nature of the posts. Will be unsubscribing if this is the way forward.

    • Sorry, but me too. I love your site, Raffles, but thought the yacht ad was poor show — on the site maybe fair enough, but not spammed out to your email subscribers. It’s not even miles/points themed!

    • Noticed this too, in addition to the tracking links used now instead of direct URLs and a heavy push for referral links rather than providing a balanced impartial opinion.

      • Volker says:

        How do these tracking links work?

        • It is totally impartial! The content is not driven by what may or may not generate a very modest amount of money from click-throughs.

          If I start running obscure posts for Latvian Air then you can be fairly sure there is money involved, but apart from that …!

      • GlennM says:

        I have to disagree John, I think its okay to have the odd sponsored page when its kept in moderation. The advertising was clearly noted as a sponsored page, and the website clearly outlines affiliates and advertising that takes place.

        The only thing I might cringe at is that it came through by email too – which is less preferred, however I always have the choice, if I don’t like the email I can un-subscribe!

        I was interested in the fact that the comments section on that advert/sponsored post was disabled though – I would have loved to have read the comments that would have been VERY likely 🙂

    • I have no issue with Raffles making a buck out of what is a great website, i would encourage it. But, that article sitting in my inbox is in my opinion a spam email – its about as relevant to me as all those groupon variations.

      I have recommended this website to a lot of people, and hope they find the same use out of it as i do, but no one would thank me for adding to the spam in their inbox and in the future were it to continue then it would make it harder for me to recommend.

      • squills says:

        Not directed @ you particularly CV – but IMHO people should get over it, it’s not exactly difficult to see it’s a sponsored link and easy to ignore.

        We know Raffles is trying to make a go of it as a points blogger with frills and the posts & discussion here are pretty useful. He probably wouldn’t find it so easy to justify what he does to his wife if the blog didn’t pull in a few quid as well.

        Look at (say) Nomadic Matt’s blog for a comparison of what HFP is not, HFP is infinitely less commercial and the better for it IMV 😉

        • Yes it is currently less commercial than other blogs, but is steadily moving towards it.

          • I think this is ‘it’ in terms of where commercialisation can go, to be honest. There is very little more I can add. What I am trying to do, frankly, is position the site so that it is sustainable if (because of the new FCA regulations) Amex pull the plug on card referrals.

          • Out if interest, do you think those regulatory changes will impact on personal referrals too or just the sort of higher volume ones that you do via a website?

          • Absolutely no idea. Mainly because the FCA’s position on a lot of things is still unclear, but they have been taking a ‘big stick’ approach on issues where they have intervened which is worrying some people. On the basis that refer a friend still exists today, post April 1st, I assume that Amex is happy for it to continue.

          • scroogemcduck says:

            Some people are just ridiculous – how do you think this site runs? On hot air? It costs money to run. It costs someone’s time to run. And for the amount of money it saves people, what is the issue here? HKUD has affiliate links all over the place, MSE now directs people to MoneySupermarket.com. For a blog that is mainly read by people in business, surely you should applaud someone for seeing a business opportunity, a chance to make a bit of money whilst doing something they love. For some people though it may be a bit of jealousy that they are not the ones making the money.

      • Whilst I understand your point, it was clearly marked in the header as a sponsored post, so you can delete it without having to open it. It is a one-off and there are no other plans.

        I did NOT actively solicit this – the company approached me and it seemed acceptable.

    • It is a one-off. They wanted to advertise on the site but Hilton has tied down a lot of the top slots for the foreseeable future, so this was a compromise. It is clearly marked as sponsored and you are welcome to skip over it.

      Had it not been travel / holiday related it would not have run.

      There will not be a spate of such posts going forward, I promise you.

      • This is great to hear and appreciate you taking the constructive criticism.

      • Erico1875 says:

        I dont see why you need to apologiseor explain anything Raffles
        Indeed, 1 sponsored post a day would not be unreasonable for the goldmine of information you willingly give away FOC.
        I cant understand these people who grudge you from prospering a little for your expertise.
        Martin Lewis sold his site for £68million. Good on him, and you too.

      • Raffles, thanks for the follow-up, it’s good to hear you don’t have further plans for ongoing posts of this ilk. Just for the record I’ve no issues over referral links — that’s totally fair play and to be expected. I wouldn’t even have objected too much if the sponsored post was directly miles/points related, and/or limited to the site only — it was the seemingly irrelevant subject matter sent out by email which I found annoying. Do keep up the great work with the site — a valuable source of information.

  2. Empers says:

    Maybe an obvious question, but how long do you have to keep it to get the 500 points, before you can uninstall the toolbar?

  3. I can’t seem to find the button to install it…

  4. ankomonkey says:

    I did this last week and have received 1000 miles (500 x 2, but with different credit descriptions both linked to Miles Finder)!

    • Matthew says:

      Same here…two bonuses of 500pts 🙂

    • Trevor says:

      And me! Odd since it says one is for “Shopping Miles Purchase Transaction” yet I didn’t make a purchase?!

  5. while on virgin, I applied for their ISA to get the free miles. I applied for hubby and I at the same time. hubby got his 5000 bonus miles last week, I am still waiting. How long can it take and how do I follow it up?

  6. surfnode says:

    I couldnt find the download link right away as well, but this worked for me: http://shop.virgin-atlantic.com/toolbar/download

  7. squills says:

    Same here, 1000 from last week:

    Shopping Miles Purchase Transaction 500
    Miles Finder Transaction 500

    I was unable to make it download in Internet Explorer but it was simple enough in Chrome 😉

    • Coreen Griffiths says:

      Can you download it on an iPad or has it got to be a laptop thanks

      • I read somewhere else (forgotten where) that you can try to install it on an iPad and it fails. However, the points still appear! I cannot verify this obviously!

  8. Any geographical restrictions?

    • Dunno! It is designed for the UK but not sure they could track it, unless only people with a UK Virgin account get it. But I doubt they are that switched on.

      • Trevor says:

        They can easily track it and/or restrict it through IP address. If you do it, try use a proxy first to show you as being behind a UK IP address.

        • Virgin and their shopping portal outsource provider should have no reason to care where you are.

          Whether specific merchants wants to do business with you outside the UK is the merchants own concern. It would be outright bonkers for Virgin to limit it themselves, espeically by a GeoIP method given that they are a personal international transportation company with customers who routinly find themselves outside the UK.

          But stranger and stupider things have of course sadly happened….

  9. Matthew says:

    Newbie question but can I just sign up for a Virgin account to start collecting points..? Any sign up bonus..?

    • You can use a referral from someone else, but you only get a bonus if take a Virgin flight within x months of signing up. If you’ve got no cash tickets on Virgin lined up its not worth bothering with.

  10. There are also 500 on offer for completing one survey on erewards. similar to the avios offer a few months ago

  11. GlennM says:

    Worked for me too (recently had it installed a couple of months ago). Also I received my 1000 points tip from Tesco yesterday for holding onto automated VA conversion until 31st March, now switched it back to normal before the next roll-up! Easy points!

    • Louie says:

      But that should have been 2,500 Virgin miles……

    • Only 1000 miles here as well for Tesco auto conversion.

      • Same here. Now why does VS remind me of bmi…..

        • I had the extra 1,500 miles added onto my account today with a date of 01 Apr 2014.

          I phoned Virgin about the missing miles and was told the Tesco auto convert promo was only worth 1000 miles so I sent them their email which stated it was worth 2,500 miles.

          I haven’t had a reply to my email so not sure if I’ve got the extra miles as a result of my email or if they’ve just realised their mistake and corrected everyones account.

    • Charlie says:

      I got an email in January from Virgin Flying Club to say there will be a 30% bonus when auto-converting Tesco clubcard points, in the May 2014 Clubcard statement. Did anyone else get this?

      The confusing thing is, is that I got this email a few days before the January 2014 Clubcard statement which also had a 30% bonus. So I am not sure if the email was a mistake.

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