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Virgin Atlantic has unveiled its new ex-airberlin leased A330-200 aircraft

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Virgin Atlantic has released footage of their new aircraft “Daydream Believer” (G-VMNK), the first of four A330-200 leased from the remnants of Air Berlin to replace some of its B787 aircraft whilst engine issues are being sorted.

From March 2018 the A330-200 will operate on the Manchester routes to New York, Boston, San Francisco and Barbados.

The seat configuration will be different to the usual Virgin Atlantic aircraft.

Upper Class will have 19 seats with three different variations: Love Suite (in the centre of the cabin and ideal for couples or groups travelling together), Solo Freedom Suite (direct aisle access) and Solo Corner Suite (extra privacy).  This is, in truth, a way of selling as a benefit the lower level of privacy that some Air Berlin seats have compared to the standard Upper Class seat.

The Economy cabin will have 46 Economy Extra Legroom seats and 222 Economy seats.  There is no Premium Economy.

The planes are fully Wi-Fi enabled with free messaging in Upper Class.

You can see the transformation of the exterior from Air Berlin to Virgin Atlantic in this rather cool video below.

How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards

How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (June 2022)

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, the Reward+ card has a bonus of 15,000 Virgin Points):

Virgin Rewards Plus credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Virgin Rewards credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard

A generous earning rate for a free card at 0.75 points per £1 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.

SPECIAL OFFER: The sign-up bonus on Amex Gold is increased from 20,000 Membership Rewards points to 30,000 Membership Rewards points until 19th July 2022. This card is free for the first year.

American Express Amex Gold

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

The Platinum Card from American Express comes with 30,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 30,000 Virgin Points.

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Small business owners should consider the two American Express Business cards. Points convert at 1:1 into Virgin Points.

Amex Platinum Business American Express

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year 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 (77)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • N says:

    OT – Stayed at a Four Seasons last night through FHR. Any ideas on how I can get myself a few points on this stay?from my reading it seems Four Seasons have their own invite only scheme?

    • Tom C says:

      There is no points scheme for FS. All their loyalty is intangible benefits.

    • Rob says:

      There is no scheme. The ‘invite only’ thing is restricted. FS is big on data mining and tracks you around the world and does do stuff for good customers. They repaid me 100% (£2500) of a stay last year after we had a few problems, and that included refunding spa treatments, horse riding lessons etc, not just the room cost.

      • George says:

        Rob, have you any inkling of awareness of how this comes across?

        • Rob says:

          Not my spa treatments, not my horse riding lessons! I am usually working when all this is going on (as I am now, at 2.30 on a Sunday afternoon).

        • Darren says:

          Seems like he had a bad stay, followed by good service recovery on FS’s part. That’s what I get.
          Your comment on the other hand.

      • Alan says:

        That’s some excellent service recovery! I thought I was doing well getting 30k out of IHG for Ambassador pack still not arriving 😉

  • a270 says:

    OT: I cancelled my Amex Platinum about 2 months ago but want to get it again. I know I won’t get the bonus. However, the message said I already have a live application and that they are processing it! My partner had applied for the Lloyds Avios Amex about 2 weeks ago successfuly. I am wondering if it’s picking that up. I only have the SPG Amex so I haven’t hit the limit yet. Do I wait for their decision letter or call them?

    • JP says:

      Llloyds amex is completely different to real amex cards, so they will not interact. Also, there is no limit of cards types that was the case years ago.

      I suspect the old account has been closed off properly and contact amex.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      use the referral link from your SPG card to apply even if you don’t get any joining bonus you might get 5k SPG

  • Gavin says:

    The new Lufthansa livery reminds me of the old BOAC Speedbird used in the early ‘70’s.

  • Jovanna says:

    It’s quicker to lease an aircraft, paint it, register it in the UK and fiddle around with the interior than to fix a few engines?

    Like the time I took my car in for repair because there was water in the rear light cluster. Turns out I needed a new engine management unit. Who’d have thought?!

    • The_real_a says:

      The word is that Rolls Royce have very little extra capacity on the production line over that for new aircraft. The issue is fixed but it might take 18 months to catch up with engine replacements. I would imagine RR prefer any customer who can, does push out as long as possible… boeing and rr and footing the net bill i was told.

      • chris1922 says:

        I’m led to believe the engines aren’t being fixed specifically at this time, but instead waiting until they are next “rolled over” or are due for scheduled maintenance anyway, which fits with your production line angle.

    • blot_bang_rub says:

      This may help explain why it’s quicker to lease, paint and register an aeroplane:
      The solution to the problem is mind bogglingly complex – you’re asking materials to do things that nature did not intend.

  • Zain says:

    How many VS 787s are awaiting new engines? I thought only 2 were in storage so surely the situation can’t be that bad?

  • Roger says:

    OT- EY redemption using AA miles.

    I am trying to redeem aa miles on EY.
    The quote I got from CSA suggest that the fees are same for both adult and children.
    ITA matrix suggests that there is no United Kingdom Air Passenger Duty APD (GB)
    payable for children (below 12 IIRC).

    How can airlines get away without disclosing full breakdown of taxes?
    This is one way tax of almost £130 on top of miles for LHR_AUH route on EY.

    Any thoughts?

    • Roger says:


      Any experience on airlines charging APD when redeeming miles which includes children?
      Looking up in this case it seems AA is adding APD for kids even though it may not pass on to the Govt.

      • Rob says:

        AA has to refund you under Government rules – it is very possible their IT has not been changed.

  • Chelseafi says:

    O/T I have my Platinum amex and want to book Eurostar and make use of lounges, for a 1 or 2 night trip to either Paris or Brussels flex on dates May or June pos. I have approx 130k IHG points and approx 30k Hilton, not too worried about using them, probably pay cash if not too high. I am Plat for IHG and then have the usual status on the other hotels from my Amex Platinum, I would love to have lounge access at hotel, think we could make use of that. Any suggestions to hotels that I have a good chance of lounge access/room upgrade, that won’t cost loads? Thanks

    • Genghis says:

      It seems you’ve not got the highest status in any chain so might struggle to get lounge access / upgrade to Exec floor etc. We stayed at Hilton Paris Opera in Nov as Diamonds though and really liked the breakfast and the evening lounge offering. It has recently been refurbished and still had the ‘new’ feel to it

    • Leo says:

      As Genghis says you don’t have the right status for guaranteed access to the lounge at a Hilton – you need Diamond. As far as IHG is concerned – you would have to pay to access the Club lounge at Le Grand IC on a redemption – (€120 per night for Ambassadors?). There’s no lounge at the IC Avenue Marceau. There’s no lounge at the Indigo. There is a lounge at the Republique Crowne Plaza. I don’t know if they’d give you lounge access as a Platinum – TA reports not given to a Spire but maybe someone else knows as I’ve not stayed there?

      • KevMc says:

        I’m staying in the Crowne Plaza Republique in a couple of weeks, having booked a standard room for €99/night in their sale back in October. I have Ambassador, so will report back on whether they give us lounge access (though I am not expecting it)

  • Dan says:

    To me the new LH livery looks like a great improvement – for LOT Polish Airlines

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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