Virgin Red has launched a new way of letting you earn Virgin Points – its own exclusive train ticket booking platform, called Virgin Trains Ticketing.
I’ll just pause for a moment to allow you to think about the irony of Virgin Group setting up a train ticket booking platform after it lost both the Virgin Trains East Coast and Virgin Trains West Coast franchises …..
The new train booking website (we should probably call it a platform ….) is currently exclusive to Virgin Red and operates via the Virgin Red app.
It is a very simple structure:
- you earn 3 Virgin Points per £1 spent
- there are no booking fees with e-tickets (there is one if you choose station collection)
- there are no delivery fees with e-tickets or station collection
E-tickets (technically m-tickets, since they can’t be added to Apple Wallet etc) sit inside the Virgin Red app, which saves you from having to download a separate app to hold your tickets.
As long as the rail company you are using does not have exclusive discounts for users of its own website, you will be getting the same price as you would pay elsewhere.
From time to time, LNER runs a 5% cashback deal on American Express cards. The most recent version has just finished. When this offer is running, the LNER website should be the most rewarding place to book rail travel irrespective of which train company you are travelling on.
In the absence of this offer, the Virgin Points offer is competitive. You would lose any Nectar points you would earn by booking direct with those franchises that offer Nectar, but these are always worth far less than 3 Virgin Points per £1.
The number of rail companies offering Nectar points continues to drop in any event. South Western is the latest to pull out of Nectar as we covered here.
How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (June 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.
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:
(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.)