Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Earn Virgin Atlantic miles with the American Express and Red Carnation Hotels cashback deal

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You may have received an email from American Express yesterday offering you £50 cashback if you spend £250 at Red Carnation Hotels.

Assuming you were targeted, it is valid at their nine UK hotels for stays completed by 19th May.  In London, they are dotted around Kensington and Belgravia – The Milestone, The Rubens, The Egerton House Hotel, The Chesterfield, 41 Hotel etc.  The full list is here.

What Amex didn’t remind you is that Red Carnation Hotels is a Virgin Atlantic Flying Club partner.  Full details can be found on the Virgin site here.

The standard earning rate is 2,000 Virgin miles per night.  This is substantially better than any other Virgin Flying Club hotel partner.

Virgin Flying Club recently announced that Red Carnation will cease to be a partner on 13th April.  Oddly, the wording has now disappeared from the Flying Club website so I don’t know what is happening.  Assuming it is ending, you still have three weeks to take advantage and £50 cashback PLUS 2,000 Virgin Atlantic miles per night is not a bad deal at all.

The Red Carnation website is here if you want to find out more.

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 (107)

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

  • mark2 says:

    I have just added a Gold Companion Credit card to my Amex Gold (link and the MR points from the companion appear on the main card. I think this is good since it avoids having to clear out a small balance when I cancel the gold credit before upgrading the main card to Platinum.

    • JamesB says:

      Did you already have two credit cards when doing this Mark? I’m at thesame point in the sequence but was holding off until I cancelled one of my two credit cards.

      • Alex W says:

        Data point – I had Plat and BA Blue and was recently rejected for the plat Companion card.

        • S says:

          Seconded — I have the Plat companion and BAPP, was rejected for SPG.

          Though I hear that the “max 2 credit and 2 charge cards at the same time” is loosely enforced.

      • mark2 says:

        I had cancelled all of my Amex cards and was starting again, so I only had the Gold charge when I applied for the gold credit. I have completed the £500 spend, so, as soon as the bonus appears, I shall cancel the gold credit before applying for BAPP.
        But my wife got platinum credit (and charge) while having SPG credit.

      • JamesB says:

        Thanks all, I’ll take the cautious route and wait until I cancel a card next month.

  • Jason K says:

    OT. To everyone that posted about the curve debit card, and being able to use it to pay off other credit cards, it seems this loophole has been closed. I tried a couple yesterday and they all failed.

    • Rob says:

      £200 in ATM withdrawals per month charged to your credit card, all ‘debit card only’ payments charged to your credit card.

      • Sussex Bantam says:

        Mine failed yesterday trying to pay Npower – which is ironic given they allowed payment by credit card anyway and I was just using it to try and build up a payment record !

      • Tilly says:

        My curve card app says £200 daily limit not a month. Monthly limit is over £3k. Is mine different to everyone else’s? I only just received the card at the weekend. Used Rob’s referral.

        • Alan says:

          What you can withdraw vs ‘fair use’ and thus what’s fee-free are two different things.

      • Tilly says:

        Sorry, mean £200 ATM daily.

      • Matt says:

        You can only take out £200/month from an ATM charged to your credit card. You can take out up to £3K (or whatever your limit is) if your curve is linked to a debit card.

      • Andrew says:

        But you can only withdraw £200 per month linked to your credit card if you also make substantial non-ATM purchases (check their fair use conditions)

    • Matt says:

      I’ve just made a payment using my Curve card linked to my Tesco Debit card to Nationwide credit card without any problems. American Express through up an error message though, so it looks like this is on the way out.

    • luckyjim says:

      How on earth did they find out about that so quickly?

      • Alan says:

        Probably from reading on here…

        • Cate ⛱️ says:


        • Leo says:


        • Genghis says:

          There are different “levels” of points earning. The stuff Raffles writes about is squeaky clean and legit. If you’ve been doing this game a while, you’ll have found your own tricks / hacks that are a bit more grey. No one really writes about them online [or should write about them online] as they are likely to get shut down with the poster shooting themselves in the foot. This is one of those examples.

        • Mike says:

          Genghis – Perhaps there should be a “grey club” – first rule of grey club………you do not talk about “grey club” !

        • Luckyjim says:

          Fin tech has created some good opportunities. Let’s hope no one feels the need to shout about it. Raffles included.

    • Anna says:

      Sussex Bantam – OVO energy still seems to be accepting Curve so I can’t see why Npower wouldn’t. Surely any outfit supplying goods and services which accepts the underlying credit card should accept the Curve card?

  • Chris says:

    Are there any decent earning car hire points/miles deals out there right now for UK rentals?

    I made the most of the Virgin 6k miles one while it lasted.

    • Alex W says:


      • Rob says:

        Virgin / Hertz is permanently 1k per rental. Triple Avios via Avios for another few days IIRC.

    • roberto says:


      Did you get any/all of the 6k miles for your bookings? Plenty of chat about many other not getting their points on FT.

      I have two bookings to come

      • Chris says:

        All the bookings that were made in Jan/Feb and started in /JanFeb I received the points for and the points were credited 3 days after rental period ended. I have not received points for a March booking (made in Feb) that ended 8 days ago, so worried that might not post.

        I made all bookings via the link in HfP then the link in the Virgin page. I only used the Virgin AWD that pre-populated from the Virgin/Amex mini-site.

      • Relaxo says:

        I have not got my 6K points from the AVIS offer yet….completed rental end of Feb.

  • N. Ford says:

    That AMEX16SWP code didn’t work for me. It wouldn’t apply. Any answers…? Thanks…

    • Julie M says:

      I just used it and it didn’t work if I put the code in first. You need to part pay with points first, £0.01 as Rob mentioned, and then select the Apply button. You can now put the code in the gift code field above the points field and that should work.

      • N. Ford says:

        Damn… then I’ve missed out and have paid the full £25+!
        Should’ve waited for everyone’s responses…

    • Patrick says:

      It only worked for me when I incrased the amount of points applied from 2 to 10 – otherwise I was getting a message that “It cannot be applied to my purchase”.

  • Julie M says:

    P.S thanks Rob for the reminder!

  • Tim says:

    I cannot get the Amazon code to work – have tried with different items (all direct from Amazon), different numbers of points, different Amazon account (one with Prime, one without), different Amex cards (Gold and Gold Credit). I am definitely applying the points first and then entering the code, but every time it says ‘cannot be applied to purchase’. Any one have any other ideas?

    • Tim says:

      Ignore me – I still had student status on my Amazon account as I was a part time student for my PhD. It’s not valid if you have a student account, because you already get discounts. Works on my wife’s account!

  • Mike G says:

    AMEX16SWP not working for me, either:

    “The promotional code you entered cannot be applied to your purchase. “

  • Grimz says:

    OT – do you get the 18k referral bonus from Platinum for referring the Nectar Amex cards?

    • Jason K says:

      Yes. referral for any card.

      • JamesB says:

        Not any card, those new cards (AECC I think Rob calls them) seem to be excluded much to my disappointment.

        • Jason K says:

          Sorry I should of clarified that to all personal cards. Business and corporate I am unsure about.

        • Rob says:

          Odd, possibly because the cards were not available when this promo launched. Will amend.

        • JamesB says:

          I think the Costco card is excluded too but has it been scrapped? I remember reading something about it but cannot remember what.

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

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