Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Take advantage of the Virgin Hotels San Francisco launch offer

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

The new Virgin Hotels chain is gearing up to open in San Francisco next month, following the successful launch of the first property in Chicago three years ago.  It is a new-build property at 250 Fourth Street, South of Market.

If you are a Virgin Flying Club member you can get special deals on stays between 1st February and 31st May:

Virgin Hotels San Francisco launch offer

All Flying Club members will earn 2,000 miles per stay, double the usual rate

Silver Flying Club members will receive a free upgrade (subject to availability at check-in)

Gold Flying Club members will receive a free upgrade (subject to availability at check-in) and free breakfast

You can enter your Flying Club number during the booking process on the Virgin Hotels website.

The Virgin Flying Club page which explains the benefits you get at Virgin Hotels is here.  You cannot, at present, redeem miles for free nights at Virgin Hotels.

Next up will be properties in Dallas and New York.  The first site outside the US will be Edinburgh where Virgin Hotels is converting the historic India Buildings in the Old Town.


HFP Virgin Atlantic Rewards credit card

How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (July 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):

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

15,000 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 20,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 20,000 Virgin Points:

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes 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 (243)

  • Roger says:

    OT Curve Metal Beta

    I have an invite for Curve Metal Beta?
    – Are there still limits (100k?) for Beta card?
    – Can I downgrade to Blue if I use monthly fee option?
    – Currently have exhausted limit on free card, if I went over to metal, would it reset the limit to a higher?

    • Alan says:

      Yes, limits don’t seem tied to card type so I wouldn’t expect immediately getting 100k!!

      Yes can downgrade (IIRC 6 month min term), will lose the metal card then too and be issued new one.

      No reset on switch.

    • Annabelle says:

      Roger – what are the costs of Curve metal?thanks

      • MDA says:

        Is there any min terms? E.g 6m

        • Alan says:

          Yes I think Metal has 6/12 minimum. IMO better to get Black now so you’re grandfathered onto those terms after a 6/12 trial of New Black. (note if you upgrade to Metal you can’t return to grandfathered Black)

        • Rob says:

          Not as far as I know. You will find out very shortly anyway ….

      • Pol says:

        Does anyone have a link to the travel/gadget insurance coverage?

      • LewisB says:

        Curve Metal is a bargain at £12.50pcm (£150 annual upfront). 60% off Lounges… is there a minimum fee or is that up to 60% off the advertised price?

        • Rob says:

          This is standard LoungeKey, so £15 (I assume) per visit, which is probably 60% off at some places.

        • Alan says:

          Not sure, I’ve got Amex Plat so that’s not a benefit of interest to me in afraid. My understanding is that this particular benefit isn’t yet live, even for beta members.

      • Alan says:

        Just confirmed by Curve on their Community re 6/12 minimum…

        “Curve Metal, due to its expensive card issuing, needs to have a minimum of 6 months subscription”

    • tartan says:

      Had the invite yesterday but not recieved the email with the link to the app yet. Anyone else recieved it?

      • Roger says:

        Not received a second email after the first notification.
        Might be later today.

        • Chrisasaurus says:

          Ditto here, been well over 24hrs now

          Anyome had the second email who got the first?

    • Rob says:

      Max limit from next week is £1.4 million per year BUT you need to work up to this.

      • Alex says:

        Wow, great news, thanks Rob. ‘Working up’ to it is fair, but the new limit actually makes the product interesting long-term, I may actually upgrade to ‘metal’ from current black.

        • Alan says:

          I’ve still not heard confirmation that Metal is required for higher limits. Once you go from old Black to Metal there’s no route back so personally if hang fire until all becomes clearer.

          • Rob says:

            Curve told me that limits are not driven by card type so upgrading does not mean higher.

          • Alan says:

            Good, that’s consistent with what I’ve heard from them too!

      • MD says:

        So glad to hear that, thank you Rob! Upgraded to metal, went for the sexy red version. Looking forward to my next visit to Pret now, in view of your previous comments! 😂

      • Mr Dee says:

        That will do me, might even put through Amex spend if I can make it work out better.

    • Simon says:

      I think the amex 0.65% fee on the free card could be useful to hit those purchase, 2 for 1 deadlines if they qualify.
      That’s less than people are paying for avios on groupon. And below the official buy on board peppa pig exchange rate.

      • Rob says:

        Not so simple though, because you need to work out the reward on your most generous MC/Visa and offset that. IHG Premium is 0.8p of IHG points per £1, so that makes your net fee 1.45%. Unless you only want Avios, of course. And only if you’d actually want IHG points.

        It really isn’t simple …

        • Thomas Howard says:

          but the IHG/Virgin point opportunity cost only applies if you’re paying someone that accepts credit cards over debit? The easiest way of generating spend is via HMRC, ISA and pension payments which AFAIK only take debit.

          I’m trying to convince (faster churn on Amex, etc) myself its worth metal but I want to make sure I’m not going to regret missing the grandfathered black.

          • Rob says:

            If you have Curve Metal there is no opportunity cost but there is on Blue as all Amex is charged.

  • Alan says:

    India Buildings location would be superb for folks attending the Edinburgh Fringe – if it opens before August would suggest booking as soon as they start taking reservations!

  • Frenzir says:

    OT
    I have called to cancel my AMEX GOLD card on the 15th of July.
    Is it safe to apply now for a new one and get the bonus?

    • Roger says:

      Yes

    • Alan says:

      Should be fine. If you’re worried they didn’t shut it straight away for some reason then check the closure date on the letter they will have posted out to you confirming account cancellation.

    • TripRep says:

      Frenzir – simple way to double check

      Phone AMEX and ask before applying, that’s what I do.

    • Rob says:

      Yes, should be fine, works to the exact day.

  • Roger says:

    OT- Is any one else having issue with AW and VS
    changed password on VS account and using the same on AW does not seem to work!

    • TripRep says:

      Roger – contact VS they can ban AW servers from auto logins.

      Had a long chat with their IT security guy about this in the autumn. Totally decent bloke (Dave), explained it all to me and rectified the situation.

      • Roger says:

        It was last name in small vs capital, now resolved!

      • Chris C says:

        There’s always a bloke called Dave in IT!

        • Darren says:

          They do sterling work

          ‘Hard reset’ – turn it off and back on again.
          ‘Picnic’ – problem in chair not in computer.

        • TripRep says:

          He also authorised a VS CS goodwill of 10k miles.

          So as I said, top dude.

        • Mark2 says:

          Many years ago, I worked somewhere where they had three operations shift leasers all called Dave!

  • Georg says:

    O/T Since Miles & More changed from fixed earning levels to a revenue based system a while ago. I tried to avoid this by booking through travel agents. So far with no success. I tried Expedia and American Express but both bookings didn’t deliver the old booking class based amount of award miles, rather some lower odd number. Does anyone know an agent to book with to receive the old amounts?

    • Czechoslovakia says:

      I’d be very interested in this too, as a regular P class traveller. Only way around the miles drop I found was booking with United or LOT issued tickets.

    • Marcw says:

      You’re better off booking it with another airline (Unitef., air Canada,…)
      But that’s not always possible.

    • John says:

      You are misunderstanding the revenue-based earning system.

      Any tickets issued by Lufthansa, SWISS, Austrian Airlines and Brussels Airlines will earn M&M on a revenue basis. That is, a 220-, 724-, 257- or 082- ticket. Also applies to Eurowings tickets.

      Using Amex Travel or Expedia to book flights that are wholly or mainly on one of those airlines, will still result in a ticket issued by that airline, which will earn on a revenue basis in the same way as booking direct. Furthermore you may also pay the extra 16 euros that Lufty charges travel agents to book its tickets.

      You have to book the ticket via another airline which is rather difficult for direct flights unless you can get a codeshare; it may be easier on complex routings

      • Georg says:

        Thanks for pointing this out! Oddly it seems that Eurowings flights booked on the Lufthansa website still attract the fixed award miles levels.

  • Alex W says:

    IMO, nothing with Marriott Bonvoy written on it is ever going to look “very cool”!

    • BJ says:

      I know Rob is a fan of “cool credit cards but do many people really care what they look like? In some countries they look down on you for using a credit card at all, in others they arouse suspicion but in most I doubt many people care what the card you present looks like.

      • Rob says:

        I defer to William Morris on this ….

        • BJ says:

          I was wondering what a trade union guy had to do with credit cards…google to the rescue! You have mentioned quite a few things now that suggest a keen interest in art and design or at least an excellent general knowledge.

      • Andrew says:

        My standard Virgin Money Card (fx free) with the picture of a heritage tape cassette often gets an “ooh” in the USA.

        In the UK, the staff rarely touch the card.

      • Darren says:

        I like the look of some cards, not a fan of the Bonvoy example above though. The old(current) SPG is quite nice.

        • idrive says:

          For me the design is totally important and love they way they look. As a hobby, I used to design cards layouts hoping that a bank would allow to print that design for me. I remember Barclays Debit used to do that but in the end it was choppy with areas left blank so no chance and was looking cheap:-)
          On this topic, I was just reading about Magnises after watching Fyre Documentary on Netflix..
          In any case, I prefer a nice looking card 🙂 regarding Metal, I would go for it as all my cards get bent in my pocket wallet but would not pay such an amount only for that. I already get Premium Benefits and Insurance from other cards anyway.
          As a pro re plastic: Amex Plat works perfectly to de-ice your car windows in Winter without scratching, I found myself in emergency one evening 🙂

      • RussellH says:

        I think that the current UK SPG Amex design is one of the best around. I am sure that it is not ‘cool’, but it is elegent.
        This American thing sort of looks ‘American’, at least when the A word is used perjoratively.
        Talking of American, I think the current AA design is far inferior to the classic one it replaced. But I fully accept that once one is actually inside the plane, the appearance of the outside is utterly irrelevant.

  • Genghis says:

    OT. Hilton points from Hilton Barclaycard were dumped in my account yesterday and show as a line item. However, total points balance has not changed. Has anyone experienced this before? What was the resolution?

    • TripRep says:

      Genghis think Hilton is on a go slow atm.

      Status took ages to update and my recent purchase of HH pts with 100% Bonus has yet to show. Give it 48hrs

    • Roberto says:

      Same here. Points arrived but total pointd not updated to reflect the increase.

    • BJ says:

      Yes, several people have reported issues. I finally got my missing referral points yesterday or so I am told, they are notvreglected in my balance yet this morning.

      • Dan says:

        I’ve had 2 stays this week that are showing in my points activity but haven’t been added to my total points balance or stay totaliser for the year. Definitely a go slow!

    • Sididdly says:

      I had a stay posted on Tuesday but not updated on my overall points and nights/stats tracker. Then another on Wednesday. Then credit card points. However, Tuesday stay has just posted correctly so hopefully others will follow.

    • Ian Perry says:

      One of the many problems peoples are seeing with Hilton currently. Covered on InsideFlyer yesterday. https://insideflyer.co.uk/2019/01/hilton-honors-tier-tracker-finally-updated/

      • Mike says:

        Same Same. My Monday night stay at a Hilton shows as ‘points activity’ but my balance hasn’t changed.

    • John says:

      Plenty of discussion on Flyertalk but seems like nobody here reads the forums.

    • RussellH says:

      IME it has been like that for years. It always seems to take at least 24 hours from the points appearing for the running total to update.
      But it does seem to be slower to update at present.

  • Amber says:

    Re the Marriott Rewards points redemption change

    Are we confident that the Bonvoy rebranding is totally separate to the increased prices for hotel redemption? I have booked rooms but need another month to round off my points balance. I can do this before March but if the price were to increase in Feb I might get stuffed…

    Thanks

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.