Get up to 50,000 Flying Club miles with Virgin Money International Money Transfer!

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We have discussed the Virgin Money International Money Transfer service before on Head for Points.  Historically there was either a ‘no miles’ deal or a very modest one, but over the last year or so they have really stepped it up.

The company is currently offering up to 50,000 Virgin Flying Club miles when you use them to transfer money abroad.

Full details are on their website here.  The offer runs until 27th March.  (EDIT:  now extended until 14th August 2019)

Virgin Money

The amount of miles you earn depends on the size of your transfer:

£5,000 – £9,999 – earn 2,500 miles

£10,000 – £19,999 – earn 5,000 miles

£20,000 – £49,999 – earn 10,000 miles

£50,000 – £99,999 – earn 25,000 miles

£100,000+ – earn 50,000 miles

You only earn miles on your first transfer.  This seems a bit short-sighted to me, because I think many people would want to test the company out with a smaller amount before putting £100,000+ on the line.

Virgin Money promises a best price guarantee on all international money transfers, although as this guarantee excludes internet specialists such as Azimo and TransferWise you should treat it with a pinch of salt.

In order to get ‘the best price on the high street’, you need to register an account with Virgin Money and provide the quote you received from any high street bank in writing within three hours of receiving it.  Virgin Money will then give you a matching quote.

Here is a summary of the small print:

You need to be a Virgin Atlantic Flying Club member and not already have a Virgin Money International Money Transfer account

You must complete your transaction by 27th March 2019

If your first transaction is over £5,000 you will qualify for miles which will be credited to your account within 60 days

This is not necessarily a ‘no brainer’ deal.  The miles are worth around 1p each at best.  If the Virgin rates are close to Azimo – or, for larger sums, Caxton FX, HiFX etc – then you may come out on top but you should definitely do the maths first.

Full terms and conditions can be found here.

The Virgin Money page is here.

How to earn Virgin Atlantic miles from UK credit cards

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Virgin Flying Club miles from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Virgin Flying Club miles.  That page is regularly updated with the latest special offers and will still be accurate even if you are reading this article months after publication.

(Want to earn more Virgin Flying Club miles?  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.) gearing up to launch a UK credit card
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  1. Mr(s) Entitled says:

    This is an easy win if the currency pair are volatile and Virgin are giving a 3hr window to match. Just wait for a day when it starts sliding in your favour and you might even make on the deal.

    For example, if the margin is 1% and the currency moves for you 1% you will be getting it at spot plus miles. Then move it back with a provider who offers a better rate. If the currency doesnt move your way rip up the highstreet quote and try another day.

    Can anyone think of a readily available currency that is not only volatile but makes big moves at predetermined times? Like, I dont know, government votes with significant economic and geopolitical implications?

    This is a lot easier then 3V cards or shifting a ton of lego. Rob constantly refers to his city readership and their big chunks of change, so I would expect this to get hammered.

    • It’s not going to be that easy fella. You are looking at probably 3% spreads from the high street banks on hard currencies like USD or EUR. How do you think they can give away the avois?

      • Mr(s) Entitled says:

        Do the banks really charge a 6% spread? I use and steer well clear of highstreet banks but I sincerely hope it is not that wide.

        But lets focus on the 3% you claim you would pay for the spread just one way. USDGBP moved 2.02% on 13/3. It’s absolutely in the realms of reason.

        More importantly it is a clear arbitrage. Get high street quote. Watch events unfold. Only use quote if it moves sufficiently your way. It genuinely is that easy. Just need to do some math as to how much you need Virgin Miles (and thus your value) plus if you want the money in that CCY or need to move it back.

        As to how they give points away… that implies we play by their rules. My 72p life insurance paid just fine. As did my pet policy on my *ahem* cat. They make money from the sheep. Dont be a sheep.

        • Mr(s) Entitled says:

          Sorry…. reread your comment.

          If by 3% you are referring to the bid/offer then that is just 1.5% each way and the math clearly works. If you mean 3% from spot it is actually a 6% bid/offer spread. You of course would only need to pay Virgin one way.

        • Mr Dee says:

          If you find somewhere that will give you a hughstreet quote for the longest return period and then when it matches for profitability initiate the Virgin transfer, I could then see how you would benefit.

          Know any good branches that allow quotes over long periods?

        • Mr(s) Entitled says:

          Articles states that you must supply the quote within 3hrs of receiving it. Quote before MV3 and then maybe use after?

          Event driven trading where you can’t lose.

  2. Freddy says:

    Any thoughts on the virgin money isa mentioned. Requirements appear to be £5000 lump sum or £150 X 6 months. Keep open for 12 months. Will probably wait to see if the point bonus gets increased

    • Alex W says:

      It’s a better deal than Nutmeg but only for new customers which sadly I’m not.

      • Shoestring says:

        Virgin will very probably increase it to 8000 points in the new ISA year, so wait for that – as noted, it’s new customers only.

        Not long to see if Orbis Investments repeat their matched £100 ISA offer – you invest £100, they match it immediately with another £100 which you can access after 12 months!

        • Freddy says:

          Shame you can only invest into one ISA per tax year, otherwise I would have done both!

        • Shoestring says:

          I’m dead pleased with Orbis performance – we’re both up 14% now in 11 months and that’s on their ‘cautious’ fund. Plus £100 matched investment means we’re up £114 on a £100 punt. Their fee structure is very fair as well.

        • Qwerty Bertie says:

          Reply to Freddy: that may well be accurate in terms of the official line, but it is not true in practice. ISA providers don’t have a clue, and probably not a real care either, whether your delcaration about not having another is true.

          There is of course an annual subscription limit for tax purposes, but there is nothing to stop you opening multiple ISAs each year. One year I opened four for various reasons.

        • Shoestring says:

          QB – crazy, man! 🙂

          ISA providers don’t care, of course, beyond using minimum KYC and getting you to declare eligibility – they rely on you to stay legal – but HMRC certainly *does* care and the penalties could prove expensive. ISA providers report everything about you opening ISA to HMRC.

        • Alex W says:

          @Harry you can’t be that pleased if you only invested 100 quid!

    • Genghis says:

      Not as good as it used to be.

  3. Witn a quick glance and without even bothering to do the math, with a high degree of confidence I am certain this is a rubbish deall when compared to the best options for any particular transfer.

  4. Shoestring says:

    Worth looking at Worldremit – they are offering both 1. excellent currency rates & 2. fantastic new customer bonus, up to £50 on a first deal of minimum £50 (currently I can see £40 new customer bonus, this varies according to promotional period). I transferred GBP from debit card (they also accept credit cards and BACS) to our ‘bank in the sun’ abroad – but there could be a way to use them to get foreign currency without having a foreign bank a/c. No problem getting the new customer bonus x2 for both my wife & myself (same address, same debit card).

    Checked rates as recently as yesterday evening and WR were sharper by far than HIFX/ now XE – which is saying something! Nearly 0.3% better on the rate and only 99p fee.

    • Mr(s) Entitled says:

      For larger sums I have always found a call to gets a better rate. My account is now set to a tighter margin and I can operate without transaction fees.

      Not disputing that better may exist, but it’s close enough post phone call.

    • Yep I did nicely with a similar offer from them last year 🙂

  5. The Savage Squirrel says:

    When I transfer a significant sum of money I just use CurrencyFair to put my offer into the market as the best offer. Always got matched at a little BETTER than the spot rate which cover the flat £5 fee. Nice functionality effectively gives you bank accounts in multiple currencies too at no extra cost.

  6. RussellH says:

    It is many years since I tried to make an FX transfer via a bank rather than an FX specialist.
    TBH I am amazed that banks are still in the market – have they made themselves any less uncompetitive than they used to be in the last 15 years?
    What really annoyed me, thjough, apart from their rip-off cahrges and appalling exchange rates was their utter incompetence.
    Having a household clear-out, I have rediscovered correspondence from 1998 when I was quoted a rediculously good exchange rate twice (I insisted that the teller re-confirm the rate) in a high street branch. Of course, the bank failed to honour the rate. Clearly they must have offered me their buying rate for DEM when they were selling me the currency.. Looking at the figures I must have agreed to something very close to spot for the actual transaction, plus a three figure compensation sum. A few years later, same bank allowed me to by past the branch and deal direct with their international division, but on phoning them to say I wanted to setup a forward contract was asked “What is a forward contract”!!
    Another bank that I used later insisted that I fax instructions to them, but I soon found out that no one ever checked the fax machine unless I phoned them to say that I had sent them a fax. (This is the same bank whose Probate Section told me that I would have to apply for probate a second time for my mother’s estate…)

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