Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Can you earn and burn Virgin Flying Club miles on Air France and KLM from 15th January?

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As regular Head for Points readers will know, we are now very close to the launch date of the full partnership between Virgin Atlantic and Air France KLM.

Both the EU and US authorities have approved the creation of a new joint venture for transatlantic flights.  This will allow Virgin, Delta, Air France and KLM to effectively operate as one company on these routes, allowing them to jointly set prices and schedules.  Frequent flyer benefits will also be aligned.

The official launch date of the partnership has not been released although I have hinted recently that it would be ‘very soon’.

The Flying Blue website seems to have let the cat out of the bag, however.

Take a look here.

In case the page is taken down, because it is up early, here is a screenshot (click to enlarge):

Flying Blue earning on Virgin Atlantic

…. and part two:

Flying Blue earning on Virgin Atlantic

Ignore all the ‘earn and burn’ data on that page, because it relates to Flying Blue and not Virgin Flying Club. 

(It IS relevant to you if you have a Flying Blue account, however, as you can now see the rates at which you will earn if you credit Virgin Atlantic flights to Flying Blue.)

What IS relevant is that the screenshot implies that 15th January is the launch date.

We probably won’t find out officially until next week.  However, it seems that we are – finally – about to be able to spend our Virgin Atlantic miles on Air France and KLM flights.

Of course, until we know how much they will cost and what the taxes will be, it won’t be clear if this is a big win or not.  More to follow ….


HFP Virgin Atlantic Rewards credit card

How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (September 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 30,000 Points until 15th October 2021):

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

30,000 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 30,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 30,000 Virgin Points:

Nectar American Express

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

Until 2nd November 2021, there is a special offer on The Platinum Card from American Express.

You will receive a sign-up bonus of 60,000 Amex points which converts into 60,000 Virgin Points.

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee 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 (63)

  • DarloTraveller says:

    Given the atrocious earning on Flying Blue short haul (even as a Gold), it will be interesting to run the numbers on crediting to Flying Club instead.

    The issue with Flying Blue resetting your re-qualifying date for 12 months hence as soon as you hit a status level is especially annoying for me.

    • Harry T says:

      Flying Blue just looks horrendous compared to BAEC tbh. I don’t like revenue based systems.

  • Henry says:

    Just had a quick look around KLMs reward page
    36000 miles for AMS-TOKYO Economy ticket redemption seems high
    British airways are 19000 in comparison.
    Anyone know if Virgin will be using KLMS pricing or will they use something different?

    • Mr(s) Entitled says:

      I suspect Virgin, KLM, and Air France know. I suspect they are not telling. Yet.

      • Shoestring says:

        Raffles has said that Virgin have no obligation whatsoever to follow AF/ KLM in their redemption pricing – so we’ll see!

        Given that AF/ KLM are blimmin’ expensive for European SH redemptions compared to BAEC (and I know RFS skews this) – I surely hope Virgin find a way to give better value.

        The problem is that you need 2 flights to get anywhere (apart from Paris or Amsterdam) – ie, Paris & Amsterdam are hubs connecting your first flight from the UK to your destination airport.

        Understandable, therefore, if 2 flights cost more than 1! (Even taking RFS into account)

        • Alex W says:

          If they don’t include the connecting flight in the price, the whole thing will be a waste of time.

        • marcw says:

          Do you believe Virgin Atlantic is going to subsidise AF/KLM short haul redemptions? I honestly doubt it.

          • Shoestring says:

            but what is the inter-airline cost of flights?

            it might not be the same as when (say) there’s a strike and one airline buys you a ticket on a competitor – but we know these prices are pretty low

            key question is how much Virgin are paying AF/ KLM for the redemption flights, surely?

          • marcw says:

            Problem are airport taxes + that ridiculous fee (APD). As an example, LHR-AMS, miles + 35.72€. LCY-AMS 69.65€. Now if you include a connection in AMS or CDG you need to add some extra € for the connecting airport tax. Example, LHR-AMS-BCN, 48,62€, from LCY-AMS-BCN, 82.55€; conecting via CDG is a little bit more expensive. Those are literally, taxes (no Fees), which BA subsidises thanks to the long-haul fees they charge on redemptions.

          • Shoestring says:

            true

            maybe Virgin will see certain of the AF/ KLM European flights as feeder flights to Virgin LH, and subsidise them (both ways)? I guess this would apply to routes to/ from LHR, Gatwick, Manchester in particular, maybe also Glasgow.

            just a thought!

        • Charlieface says:

          But KLM’s main selling point in the UK is that they fly to almost every airport, it was 19 on my last count and Flybe brings it up further. So unless you want to do what Shoestring does and drive cross country just to get to Heathrow, you fly from your local. Which, if you can afford it, is much more convenient. And there is usually lo-co flights from these airports only to bucket-and-spade type places.

          • Paul says:

            Exactly – I am just back from RFS flight LHR to LIS and I drove down from NW as I had some Avios to burn. When you add in the cost of fuel, parking, toll road plus service station spend then via AMS from MAN could still be a more appealing option instead using my newly acquired Virgin miles from their recent credit card promotions.

        • Andrew M says:

          In the world of cash fares, a flight involving a connection is usually priced lower than a direct flight to make up for the inconvenience so there’s no reason why it needs to cost more miles. I still the free domestic connection that BA used to offer with LH redemptions.

  • Matthew Goode says:

    Will it be possible to redeem Flying Blue miles for Virgin Atlantic tickets? I have 42,560 Flying Blue miles to use by the end of this year.

    • marcw says:

      Yes. Virgin Atlantic flights not yet loaded on the Flying Blue redemption system.

    • Peter K says:

      That’s a Goode question! 😁

      If you read the screenshots above you’ll see the answer is yes.

  • Harry says:

    OT – What is the minimum spend with Addison Lee to trigger the £10 Amex Platinum Credit every month? and when does the £10 credit hit? the next month or a few days after the first qualifying transaction?

    TIA 🙂

    • Lev441 says:

      I was wondering this also – I spent on 28/12 and not got anything yet..

    • james says:

      Took about a month to come through for me from Nov

    • Dev says:

      Harry,

      It used to be that the credit would appear a few days later. For November and December 2019, it appears to have taken longer and at least once, for November, it appeared as two separate credit transactions of £8 & £2, with the latter appearing in early December. Not sure what is going on.

      Minimum spend with Addison Lee is £10 for the credit to trigger.

  • the_real_a says:

    Short haul Flying Blue redemption are pointless when you have loco form the same airport with fares cheaper than the tax component before you ever get to the value of points. Lets hope virgin feel competitive pressure to compete with RFS as Rob alluded to a few weeks back.

  • Stuart says:

    OT but related.

    Is there a way to prevent Flying Blue Miles expiring without flying?

    • marcw says:

      It depends on the miles nature. If miles are proper flying miles, they can only be extended by flying. If miles are partner miles, they can be extended by any activity.

  • Max says:

    I have both Flying Blue miles and Virgin miles. Presumably no way to merge the two pots?

    • guesswho2000 says:

      Indirectly you can, but don’t. You can convert all your VS miles to IHG/Hilton points and then dump them into AF/KL. But that would be a horrendous waste.

    • Rob says:

      No – unless you book one way on FB and one way on VFC …

  • Moley says:

    My wife flew Monday on a non-codeshare KLM flight. Put Virgin loyalty details in on off chance and has been credited appropriate mikes/points. This is contrary to the Virgin/KLM website which suggest code-shares only at present.

    • Oh! Matron! says:

      Tell me more about these mikes 🙂

      But seriously, were tier points credited as well?

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