Virgin Atlantic announces a codeshare flight deal with WestJet

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Virgin Atlantic has launched a codeshare deal with Canadian airline WestJet.

From today, you can book WestJet flights from London Gatwick via the Virgin Atlantic website.

WestJet flies year-round from Gatwick to Calgary and Toronto.  During the Summer it also flies to Halifax and Vancouver.  The Virgin Atlantic codeshare also covers 28 connecting destinations such as Montreal, Quebec, Edmonton and Deer Lake.

WestJet Virgin Atlantic codeshare

The press release I was sent made absolutely no mention of frequent flyer benefits.  I don’t know:

whether you earn Virgin Flying Club miles when flying WestJet under a Virgin Atlantic flight number

whether you earn Virgin Flying Club tier points when flying WestJet under a Virgin Atlantic flight number

whether it will be possible to redeem Virgin Flying Club miles for seats on WestJet

The latter would be a very welcome option, as WestJet is not in any major airline alliance.  However, you can credit flights to Delta SkyMiles, Flying Blue (Air France / KLM) and Qantas, as well as WestJet Rewards.  I have asked Flying Club for clarification and will let you know when they respond.

WestJet Boeing 787 flat bed business class London Gatwick Calgary

WestJet is surprisingly impressive to fly.  Earlier this year it launched a new fully flat Business Class service on its London Gatwick to Calgary and Toronto routes.  This uses new Boeing 787-9 aircraft which WestJet is currently receiving.

If the seat looks familiar, it is because it is the same one that Qatar Airways uses on its Boeing 787 and A380 fleets in Business Class.  It certainly isn’t the sort of seat you’d expect a budget airline to be using.  See the photos above.

The one thing that differentiates WestJet from a legacy airline is the size of the Business Class cabin.  There will be just 16 seats on each aircraft.

British Airways has stopped flying to Calgary in the Winter so this new WestJet deal offers a good incentive to try them instead of Air Canada on your next trip.

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.)

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  1. John Blundell says:

    Thanks for heads up on BA offer. Is on both of our accounts.

  2. OT – I have two Marriott redemption stays in the next few months, both bookings say an e-certificate is required. Do I have to take any action to get this e-certificate or is it something which is generated automatically?

    • No, it is electronic in the system, they can see it.

    • Automatic. They really should get rid of this wording. It is only an issue if you used PointsAdvance when booking and haven’t ‘paid’ yet – you need to ring, let them take then points off you and then the hotel is sent the certificate.

  3. OT: Someone very helpfully advised that having reached IHG Spire I should now be given the choice of 25,000 bonus points or gifting Platinum status to somebody else. They also (apologies, I don’t remember the name) went as far as guiding me to the specific page on my IHG account where this should appear. However, on this page, the only benefit listed is a status upgrade with Hertz car rental.

    I have sent off a query to customer services but can anyone advise in the meantime as to whether there’s somewhere else I can go to bag these points? They would be quite handy!

    • Ignore that! Excellent customer service from IHG, the points have been added manually within only a few hours of my generic customer service query.

      • I’ve found IHG CS superb this year, if only Hilton could do half as well it would still be a huge improvement for them.

        • The Original David says:

          On the topic of IHG, has anyone had points credit from the recent IHG corporate offer. I assume employees of certain companies were targetted, but it was something like “taste of Spire” (which I already had), plus several chunks of bonus points (1k for first stay, 2k for 2nd, 5k for 3rd or something).

          I got the email, registered, and had 3 stays about a month ago, but no sign of the bonuses. Should I bother chasing yet?

          • Charlieface says:

            Really wouldn’t press the point for an offer you weren’t eligible for. They are known to shut accounts for this.

          • The Original David says:

            Sorry, I wasn’t clear – I do in fact work for the company in question! I just assume we’re not the only company in the world that IHG is running this promo for… If anyone is interested, I’ve now dug out the terms:
            • Stay 10 nights (instead of 75) in 90 days and keep Spire Elite status until December 2020
            • Stay 5 nights (instead of 40) in 90 days and keep Platinum Elite status until December 2020
            • Stay once and earn 1,000 bonus points
            • Stay twice and earn 4,000 bonus points
            • Stay three times and earn 10,000 bonus points

          • Lady London says:

            Nice offers. “To them that hath shall be given”.

            Lucky more people dont read HfP/LL. As anyone who commits to earning points ‘the slow way’ in these programs must feel a right mug compared to these offers.

    • I’m going to be about 1000 points off Spire come mid-December and there probably isn’t going to be any more credit card spend that I can put through.

      Going to have to find a way to get 1000 qualifying points, or perhaps more likely, book a hotel stay in December.

      • 500 for first OpenTable restaurant booking – post very quickly. Book a hotel restaurant you’re already stay in!

        Future bookings at IHG restaurants earn 300, others 150.

  4. KBuffett says:

    A couple of OT bits
    1) I had the £50 off £500 at Bicester show up yesterday. It wasn’t on any of my cards earlier when it was posted here, so anyone who didn’t have it on their card last week could recheck now.

    2) Does anyone have any TM Lewin discount codes that they would share?

  5. Would the 1000 Avios BA offer work on paying the balance of a BA holiday? My final payment isn’t due before April but I could anticipate to get the 1000 Avios.

    • The offers have always worked on BA Holidays balance payments in the past.

    • Yes, works.

    • Yes it will

      Remember you can just pay £100 and leave the balance outstanding, no need to pay the lot yet

    • The last Avios offer (September?) worked for me doing a part-payment on a BA holiday – so I’m hoping this one does as well!

      • Great thanks! The offer is on my BA Amex. I suppose as my BA Amex and my Amex Platinum are on the same account, the Amex Platinum travel insurance won’t be affected at all by paying with the BA Amex?

      • Worked on BA holidays last time.

    • ThinkSquare says:

      Yes, I paid £101 on a forthcoming BA holiday for the last offer and I’m about to pay another £101. Just in case they have any “edge case” issues.

      I’m currently in negotiations with Amex about their non-payment of the £30 supermarket spend offer from August. They say the Co-op I used was registered as a “general retailer”. Hopefully they’ll do the honourable thing.

  6. West jet have also just launched a status match offer with a few major airlines including BA,
    Surprised this wasn’t mentioned in the article just one TATL flight needed to extend status and companion voucher is given at low spend rates..

  7. Way OT sorry: What do HFP readers do when they want to travel or take a vacation but their other half wants to stay home?

    • Shoestring says:

      or vice versa

      answer: send them to Malaga/ Sevilla/ Rome etc with teenage daughter for some quality time together

      • The Original David says:

        Erm, seems a bit obvious, but go without them.

      • Lady London says:

        M’y other half was not a traveller so I left him at home. Missed him though when travelling. So many romantic places… without romance. Towards the end he did change a bit and i have some great memories.

    • Michael C says:

      Do a quick trip to a particular destination/to see a particular “thing” or people that the other half is nowhere as near as interested in, so no change of mofo.

    • Go with someone else instead!

      Mate, workmate, wider family.

      A workmate and I went off to Orlando for a week on a sub £400 flight and hotel deal (Direct Virgins + Hilton on International Drive) then spent a few days at Universal. Our wive’s were in on it too. They did the same deal the week after.

      The kids know *nothing*, we planned our social media content, and we were at “conferences”.

    • I would go with one of my friends. I do a holiday with one of my best friends about once or twice a year (twice this year). Sometimes my partner can’t come or it’s a holiday I would prefer to do with a friend.

    • Thanks all, I have not travelled almone since 1995 but I’m really tempted to take advantage of the avios sale to fly WTP (a first on BA) and take a winter holiday in Japan.

      • The Original David says:

        Travelling alone is excellent – doing exactly what you want to do at any moment without considering anyone else. Meals are the only awkward part, but if you’ve done much business travel you’ll probably be used to dining alone anyway, and if you can eat at the bar then can often have some great chats with the bar staff.

      • Definitely do it! Solo travelling can be rewarding and refreshing in a different way to travelling with people.

      • @David, Harry, I get you, it would be like a trip down memory lane. When I was young I almost always travelled alone because it provided a very different perspective. I used to think it wasn’t really a proper travel experience unless I was alone, two or more felt more like a holiday of sorts even if it was very active. Haven’t really done what could be described as conventional business trips since 2007 either so I’ve really got out of the habit.

        • I hope you enjoy the trip down memory lane 😊. Some of my best memories are from travelling alone and I’m actually the kind of person who prefers company.

        • You’ll get back into the swing of things!
          I’ve been solo travelling since I was 19. I was 30 when my OH and I got together, and I worried that I’d have to let go of my footloose and fancy free backpacking ways. Then I remembered that I get 13 weeks holiday a year, and he doesn’t. We spend 2 to 3 weeks holiday a year together, often camping is involved, or visiting friends, then I go off on my own to climb mountains, or snorkel with turtles! It actually works out quite well.
          Bring a book to read, if you tire of chatting to people at the bar when you go out to eat. Book yourself on a walking tour of the city or similar if you fancy having company, if not you get to do whatever you want, whenever you want without compromise. Enjoy BJ!

          • Thanks ladies for your helpful and encouraging comments. I got my credit card out and onto … we are now negotiating. Might need arbitration but it’s a start 🙂

      • Lady London says:

        Good idéal.

  8. Will this work with buying avios?

  9. Shoestring says:

    EasyJet FY2019 is out this morning, I was interested by what they had to say about the EJ Holidays new focus, what with the purchase of the TC slots etc – turns out it is early days but worth watching for hotel opps I guess:
    Before Christmas
    Website launch in UK, followed by marketing
    > 6th Jan
    First holiday customers depart
    > Spring 2020
    Winter 20/21 holidays on sale
    > Spring 2020
    Summer 21 holidays on sale
    > 2020
    Rollout to next market

    • The Original David says:

      Also saw that they plan to carbon-offset all their flights, which I really don’t understand. If they think customers want fares to be “unbundled” to get cheaper headline prices, why would they want to pay for carbon-offsetting as part of their ticket? I’d rather have a free cup of coffee…

      • They’ve decided the carbon offsetting cost is £25m, which is all of 25p per flight!
        – You’re not going to flinch at the extra ticket cost
        – It wouldn’t get you a coffee instead
        – Who are they trying to kid?!!!

        • The Original David says:

          Err, 25p per person, not per flight. If Easyjet can’t deliver a hot drink for a marginal cost of less than 25p, I’m amazed they can run a successful airline! The marginal cost of a cup of tea should be about 7 pence…

          • The cost to them of free coffee would be £2.50 lost for every coffee currently sold, or other drink traded out for a free coffee. Plus yes the marginal cost of extra coffees.

    • Lady London says:

      Wondering why Easyjet would be going towards holidays, with the number of collapses over the years in that business.

      • Shoestring says:

        massive market with the big incumbent just stopped being a player? probably easy enough to put together convincing numbers

        but I bet Stelios would have said όχι γαμημένο τρόπο!

  10. OT: It’s just taken Mrs S 30 minutes to cancel an Amex Plat, real hard sell from Amex to make her stay.

    • Hopefully they are seeing the effect of the new sign up rules, though the received wisdom seems to be that HFP readers are only a tiny % of their business!

    • @Craig, did they offer any incentive to stay?

      • They intimated that they would, but to be honest we only kept both Plat’s going to give lounge access and car hire insurance for 6 people on a big family holiday. They would have had to offer a lot to make it worth turning down £300 refund on the fee.

        • @Craig, thanks. Was just interested to hear what they might have offered. I’m holding on to my Plat for now but the fee is getting a little excessive as I’m not using any of the new benefits.

        • I’m holding onto mine, with travel insurance included for the 4 kids and lounge access for the odd time I’m not flying in business I can just about make it work. It’s things like Addison Lee that I find frustrating, utterly useless for those of us that live in an area without coverage.

      • the_real_a says:

        @BigSi – You really have to ask for what you want…

  11. OT – Rob, you may have covered this already, but are you aware that, until December 31, you can redeem 1000 Accor points for 20 euros off hotels? Normally, the minimum is of course 2000 points.

    • Saw it, not covered it!

    • RussellH says:

      They did not offer me that last night!

    • Reader M says:

      Hi Brian, could you share details? Hoping to take advantage but can’t find details online. Thanks!

      • It was simply a footnote in an email I got last night, so I don’t know any more details than that – haven’t actually done it myself. Sorry. Rob may well have more information – sounds like the sort of thing that should be in ‘Bits’, since it’s actually quite useful if it’s generally available and not targetted.

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