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Forums Payment cards Virgin Atlantic Worth getting a VA card to go alongside Amex?

  • Disneydad 1 post

    Hi all.

    so I am an avid avios collector and we currently have 2 BA Amex cards in the household.

    I have the Premium BA Card which is our main card. Gives us the 2 years and extra bonus (not a fan of the £250 fee though)

    Husband has the Free BA card which we use to get an extra BA flight every other year for an extra trip.

    What I find annoying though is the amount of places that still do not accept Amex. I am wondering whether it’s worth getting a VA card to use for all purchases that can’t be made on amex and build up points there for another flight option.

    My predicament is which card. I would go for the free one as it gives the 2 years on a companion voucher but im not sure we are going to spend £20K a year on that card alone? Is it accepted everywhere that Mastercard is accepted? Could I pay household bills like mortgage payments on it?

    Go for the paid one but where I am only looking to get a companion voucher/ enough VA miles every 3 years or so for a flight, slightly begrudge paying £160 a year on that.

    Any advice or tips is appreciated.

    acewoking 15 posts

    My card order of use is:
    BA Amex (free card) – for the Avios and Companion Voucher (usually hit £12k a year)
    Virgin Atlantic (free card) – for the Virgin points, and to avoid non-sterling transaction fees in the EU and EEA
    Nationwide – for rest-of-the-world purchases with no non-sterling transaction fees

    memesweeper 1,187 posts

    You cant use the Virgin card *anywhere* that accepts mastercard because some places are debit card only. For this reason you will not be able to use it to pay off your mortgage.

    £160 a year has a payback at a spend of over £ 20k a year I reckon. If you can hit that spend level then the paid card pays for itself, even if you ignore the vouchers.

    JonathanC 98 posts

    Have you not considered the Barclaycard Avios card(s) at all ?

    If you both get accepted, you could have a premium and a free card (you’d have to the primary cardholder for one, and your other half being a supplementary cardholder, and vice versa for the other card account

    The VS cards are good if you travel around the Eurozone a lot though, there’s no other UK credit card that earns airline points that’ll outdo the VS cards for spending in most countries in Europe.

    The VS plus card is only really worth it if you know you’ll be able to make good use of the voucher that can be used for T3 Clubhouse access, be used to take a free companion with you on a reward flight redemption (providing your not Red level and using it for a UC booking, if so then you’ll have to pay 50% of the amount of points required for the second traveller).
    Although having said that, the £160 annual fee is cheaper than the Barclaycard Premium card’s monthly fee of £20 (£240 per year), and gives the exact same amount of points (double for spending direct with VS and Virgin Holidays), and having points in a SkyTeam points account can always come in handy when OneWorld carrier flights don’t have the best options or in some cases none at all – it’s a shame the UK credit card hasn’t got any dedicated options to directly earning for Star Alliance airlines, apart from indirectly earning from Amex card spending, and limited options from the HSBC Premier credit cards, which aren’t available to just anyone.

    You’ve got some good options either way, subject to your application(s) being approved

    ChasP 155 posts

    I’ll add that you can cancel a Virgin card and reapply 6 months later and get a signup bonus each time – that pretty much negates the £160 fee esp if you apply when there is a SUB special

    memesweeper 1,187 posts

    I’ll add that you can cancel a Virgin card and reapply 6 months later and get a signup bonus each time – that pretty much negates the £160 fee esp if you apply when there is a SUB special

    That’s assuming you’ll be accepted. On my second and third applications I wasn’t.

    MF176 145 posts

    I’ll add that you can cancel a Virgin card and reapply 6 months later and get a signup bonus each time – that pretty much negates the £160 fee esp if you apply when there is a SUB special

    That’s assuming you’ll be accepted. On my second and third applications I wasn’t.

    Any other data points on this? I cancelled the paid card 8 months ago, which in hindsight I should have kept for the Euro FX benefit. Might hold out til >12m and get it again, but don’t want to be rejected!

    JonathanC 98 posts

    I’ll add that you can cancel a Virgin card and reapply 6 months later and get a signup bonus each time – that pretty much negates the £160 fee esp if you apply when there is a SUB special

    That’s assuming you’ll be accepted. On my second and third applications I wasn’t.

    Any other data points on this? I cancelled the paid card 8 months ago, which in hindsight I should have kept for the Euro FX benefit. Might hold out til >12m and get it again, but don’t want to be rejected!

    Virgin Money are weird to say the very least, the fact that there’s numerous reports that people who cancel their cards then try going back to them get rejected, that’s unfortunately the way life goes sometimes, they’re not obligated to accept anyone in the first place.

    I had the free card right around the time that Covid kicked off, there was then a promotion on the premium card only during Covid where you could get a free upgrade only voucher by spending at least £500 with them, I called up and said I’d like to upgrade my card from free to premium, they said that all I need too do is cancel the card, then apply for the other and when I get automatically rejected, just appeal the rejection, I applied and got immediately accepted by their computer system. When it was shortly before the first year’s renewal, I cancelled my card. After it was fully shut down, I applied for the free card, I wasn’t given a yes or no answer by the system there and then, only they’d get back to me in a few days time, and my application being looked at by humans. A few days passed, and I’d been accepted !

    So with this in mind, there’s supposedly a 6 month rule on not being able to have a card after previously having one, but it doesn’t seem to be enforced very well, or maybe I’ve just been very lucky !

    ChasP 155 posts

    I’ve had 3 sign up bonuses in 5 years on the Virgin + card – although the credit limit has gone down each time (£12k, £8k, £3.5k)

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