Lately, we’ve been seeing some small but still pretty great things being rolled out from Virgin Australia’s Velocity frequent flyer program – let’s just hope that this is a sign of more things to be introduced. As you’re aware, Virgin has a partnership with Atlanta based carrier Delta, similar to how Qantas has a partnership with American Airlines.
The partnership between the two programs is quite generous, and benefits are quite reciprocal in some cases. If you hold Silver status, you’ll get an added baggage allowance and things like priority boarding and check-in, but if you’re Gold and above, you can enjoy benefits like complimentary C+ upgrades (similar to Economy X) as well as benefits like access to the Delta lounges as well as priority screening.
For a long time now, you’ve been able to redeem your Velocity points for Delta operated services, that’s nothing new, but what If I said you could now use you Virgin points to upgrade a codeshare operated flight by Delta? Well, this is now possible and was only introduced quietly in the past couple of days.
It’s now possible to use your Velocity points to upgrade Delta flight (but only if the flight is codeshare with Virgin Australia)
There are two different variations of the new upgrade policy, which is for both domestic and short-haul Delta operated flights as well as the long-haul routes to and from Australia.
Here is the crucial information you’re going to want to know so you don’t run into trouble:
- You have to be booked on either a Gateway, Elevate or Freedom ticket on domestic and short-haul Delta flights with a VA code
- The flights are only available depending on if there is reward availability, the best way to confirm that it is via a third-party site like Expertflyer which even lets you set an alert if space becomes available
- To use your points for an upgrade, you have to contact the membership centre; this cannot be done online
- You, unfortunately, cannot waitlist for an upgrade
- Even if you do an upgrade, you’ll earn the base rate of the original fare you booked
- Upgrades can be requested all the way up to 72 hours before your flight
- You’re more than welcome to make a change or even cancel your ticket, but it does come at a cost – either 4,500 points for $35
- Sadly, Platinum members are not able to use any of their four complimentary upgrades
Here are the following flights that Delta codeshare on for both their domestic services as well as short-haul international flights:
There are a few critical differences for the long-haul routes, and I’ve listed them all below:
- You cannot upgrade from a Gateway or Elevate fare
- Gold and Platinum members are the only ones who can request an upgrade for the long-hauls
These two dot points are the only differences, and apart from these, the rules are the same for the domestics flights listed above.
And here are the rates for the long-haul Delta operated flights:
Overall this is a fantastic addition for Virgin Australia flyers, and It’s really, really nice to see some more benefits being introduced for VA flyers, let’s just hope this continues!
What are your thoughts on this new addition to the program?