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Get 20,000 Virgin Points by opening a Virgin Money current account

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Virgin Money is still running a strong Virgin Points offer for its Virgin Money current account. This is the highest bonus ever offered. I wanted to flag this offer again as the interest rate on the linked savings account has just been raised to a market leading 1.71%.

You can earn 20,000 Virgin Points by switching your current account to the Virgin Money ‘M Plus’ account. It also applies to the ‘monthly fee’ ‘Club M’ account which comes with travel insurance, breakdown cover and mobile and gadget insurance.

You will also receive a debit card with 0% FX fees on overseas transactions.

How do I earn Virgin Points with a Virgin Money current account?

These offers are usually only available via the Virgin Red app. However, for once, you can apply directly via the Virgin Money website here.

Within 45 days of opening your account, you need to do the following to qualify for the 20,000 Virgin Points:

  • Complete a full bank switch using the ‘Current Account Switch Service’
  • Download and register for the Virgin Money mobile banking app
  • Transfer or set-up at least two Direct Debits to your new account and don’t cancel them until Virgin Money sends you a redemption code to claim your points
  • Credit your linked Saver Account with at least £1,000 and keep this in your account until Virgin Money sends the redemption code

You do not qualify if you have an existing M Account or Virgin Money current account, or have closed one since 31st January 2022. You also do not qualify if you have taken up any Virgin Red switching offer to Virgin Money in the past.

20000 Virgin Points Virgin Money M current account

What special features does the Virgin Money ‘M Plus’ current account have?

0% FX fees on foreign payments

The free Virgin Money ‘M Plus’ current account has one very interesting benefit for HfP readers. The debit card you receive has 0% FX fees on purchases and cash withdrawals abroad.

If you don’t currently have a 0% FX fees credit card, you could save substantial sums by using your Virgin Money debit card when travelling.

Earn 2.02% gross interest

You earn interest on your current account at 2.02% on balances up to £1,000. This is worth £20 per year.

Earn 1.71% gross interest on a linked savings account

Your current account comes with a linked savings account which pays 1.71% on the first £25,000. The rate above this is a weak 1.0%.

Conclusion

This offer is clearly nowhere near as generous as the Barclays Avios Rewards package from Barclays Premier, which can earn you 43,000 Avios in your first year and gets you a British Airways upgrade voucher. That said, you may not qualify for Barclays Premier due to the income requirement.

(Click here for our introductory article to earning Avios and an upgrade voucher from Barclays Premier.)

The Virgin Money offer may be worth a look if your existing bank is causing you grief – or if you simply like to switch annually to take advantage of sign-up offers.

The inclusion of a debit card with 0% FX fees will also be of interest to those of you who don’t have a 0% credit card in your purse or wallet.

You can find out more on the Virgin Money website here.


How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards

How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (December 2022)

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, the Reward+ card has a bonus of 15,000 Virgin Points):

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard

A generous earning rate for a free card at 0.75 points per £1 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.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express comes with 30,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 30,000 Virgin Points.

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Small business owners should consider the two American Express Business cards. Points convert at 1:1 into Virgin Points.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year 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 (40)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • James says:

    OH needs to create a 2nd bank account (will make switching much eaiser) is there an offer which is available for new customers (as opposed to a switch)

    • Rob M says:

      No – you could start a new account with someone like starling and switch from there though. You would still need to put two DDs etc.

    • BuildBackBetter says:

      Remember that if you open a Starling or similar account and switch out immediately, you won’t be able to open another account with them for sometime. They want to discourage such behaviour.

      • Alex Sm says:

        well, you need to sacrifice something and choose the lesser of the two evils. I was forced to open a Monzo account – but I was very happy to kill and switch to VM. For some reason, I have a strong animosity against Monzo (maybe because of the colour of the card?)

    • Lumma says:

      If you already have an account with Halifax or Lloyds you can open a second account with them to use as your “switch” account

  • Vit says:

    Morning Rob, I have just switched based on this offer. Had to call in yesterday to ask for the 20k code but was ensured it will be emailed out coming Monday.

    As per barclays account you mentioned, I have only has my first month payslip with the required income, is it okay to apply now or will need to wait for a few months?

    Cheers,
    Vit

    • Alex Sm says:

      Two questions:

      1) I received a PAPER letter (for a fully online account) dated 25 July that my switch had been completed – how soon will the points be posted?

      2) how strict are they about 45 days? Normally it’s 60 days with other banks. It looks like it was 48 days in my case, because the initial switch didn’t work. Could this be a problem?

  • TimM says:

    It is worth noting that the Virgin Money current account counts as a real bank account. My main account is Revolut but there are a surprising number of cases when Revolut is not accepted, e.g. anything to do with gambling including the quite respectable CityIndex and some banks flag it up as risky for payments in, so my fallback is Virgin.

    • BuildBackBetter says:

      Be very careful with Revolut as main account. So many cases where funds were blocked or account closed for no reason.

      • Harrier25 says:

        Well, they say, for no reason…and probably not in their eyes.

    • AirMax says:

      Funny if old school gambling is a problem considering that they allow digital coin wallets

    • Max says:

      No FSCS compensation scheme with Revolut either.

      • Harrier25 says:

        That’s not entirely true. The savings vaults are covered by the FSCS as they are deposited with FCA regulated banks.

    • Alex Sm says:

      BTW, Virgin Money did not accept Revolut for a switch!

  • Tazzy says:

    I’ve spent the last few years loyal to BA and collecting many avios and companion vouchers. I’ve been really disappointed by customer service over the last 6 months (during the pandemic I generally thought they were pretty good). It’s time to switch my loyalties and I think this week will be spent researching virgin !

    • TimM says:

      I did the same around 8 months ago and I am now in line for their convoluted ‘2-4-1’ or ‘1.5-4-1’ or ‘upgrade’ voucher and 80k+ Virgin points. The issues appears to be 1) lack of redemption availability and 2) having to telephone to use the voucher at all. A streamlined, easier to use product is direly needed.

      • The Original Nick says:

        I got through to Virgin in 3 minutes this week (twice) to redeem an upgrade voucher. Very efficient and professional I found them to be. I might have got lucky though.

        • Panda Mick says:

          with regards to timing: maybe

          with regards to professionalism & efficient: I’ve yet to call and not get this

          VS’s IT is essentially Delta’s. As bad as this may be, it’s still better than the woeful BA effort

      • JW says:

        When I have been calling to use the voucher (which I find annoying too) I have found the key to calling virgin is calling early, before 10. After 3 ish the wait times are up to 2 hours… and the call system likes to cut calls off at 2 hours, even if you’re mid conversation.

        Another shortcut I have found when searching for dates for reward flights online, look for dates by searching for 2x one ways – outbound first then return. The roundtrip search experience on the website can be annoying as if either date doesn’t have availability, you can get bounced back to the beginning of the process almost at random

  • Molly says:

    What’s the easiest “seed” account to open to switch to Virgin? I’ve had my Barclays account for years and want to leave as my main account.

    • Roehydes Finest says:

      The first requirement noting a full Current Account switch suggests this route won’t work.

    • Alex says:

      Opening a 2nd account with your main bank is normally really straight forward but I’ve got no experience with Barclays. Otherwise the online only banks are simple, I’ve used Starling for it and had no issues.

      • BuildBackBetter says:

        Don’t open a second account with your main bank just for switching. Banks don’t like it and may block your main account.

  • Harrier25 says:

    If the paid for account paid say, 1 Virgin Red point per £1 spent, then it would make it a very attractive current account to own and Virgin Money would clean up

    • Peter K says:

      Or lose out as they have to pay Virgin for the Virgin points.

  • Roberto says:

    Do you have to switch to get this , the article implies yes of course but would it be possible to set up a second (or third) bank account leaving the existing current account(s) in place?

    If not have people set up a disposable account with a bank and then used that to swap to Virgin? If so , what intermediary disposable account did you use please..

    • James says:

      I imagine something like Starling

      • Alex Sm says:

        I opened a Monzo account and used that for a Switch – it did work

    • Marcelo says:

      I did this last time. You can check the list of banks that support switching here:
      https://www.currentaccountswitch.co.uk/banks-building-societies/

      If I recall correctly, I had created an account with Smile to then switch to Virging.

    • The Original Nick says:

      Hi Roberto. Do you have any experience of my comment in the IB thread?

    • Peter K says:

      You need a secondary account in places for something like this. Go for a bank with no switching bonus. Have it a short while, then you can switch it between various switching offers when you fancy… keeping in mind that each time you open a new account it is recorded on your credit file.

  • RussellH says:

    I have had a Clydesdale Bank a/c (now called “Virgin Money”) for about 5 years. The account is fine, in spite of now being apparently run by virgins (ie people who still have to learn what to do), but their website, for some reason, always takes minutes to load.
    It even makes the Amex website seem fast!

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