Few people know that you can redeem Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles for holidays on Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island retreat.
Necker Island was badly damaged by Hurricane Irma in 2017. After substantial rebuilding, the resort is about to reopen and this means you can now book it with miles.
Whilst it is not yet showing on the Virgin Atlantic website, US blog Frequent Miler says that it is now bookable. The reason it is restricted is that Necker is usually booked by private groups and only a handful of weeks per year are available for individual travellers.
Greg, who writes that site, should know as he has done this. Impressively, he got the entire 1 million miles (it later went up to 1.2 million) entirely from credit card sign-up bonuses …… welcome to the USA!
This is probably the best value Virgin redemption you can get. A week on Necker Island during those weeks where the island is not let on an exclusive basis will cost you $35,000 for a couple. That is £26,980. Flights are not included in this price.
On that basis, 1.2 million Virgin Flying Club miles is a very good deal – you’re getting over 2.2p per mile.
You might think that 1.2 million miles is a lot, and of course it is. However, it would ‘only’ require £800,000 of spend on the Virgin Reward Plus credit card and I know there are a fair number of HFP readers, mainly business owners, who spend six figures per month on their cards.
Virgin has decided to make life a bit harder for credit card heavy hitters. You must now have Virgin Flying Club Silver or Gold status to book this award. This is not hugely difficult but, unless you can find a promotion offering it for free, it would require you to shift some business travel towards Virgin or ask for a status match from any other airline card you have.
PS. If you were thinking of booking Necker Island for cash for $35,000, you used to earn 50,000 Virgin Flying Club miles if you gave them your number! It is possible that this offer remains available post-reopening.
PPS. My wife has 1,418,078 Virgin Flying Club miles and we could book this. Unfortunately, after watching the BBC2 documentary about Necker Island a few years ago, she’s decided that it is a bit too, ahem, free spirited for her liking …..
How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (January 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 15,000 Points):
You can also earn Virgin Points from various American Express cards – and these have sign-up bonuses too.
(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.)