Virgin Australia has released its biggest ever frequent flyer points promotion, announcing that for 48 hours until midnight Tuesday, every economy seat on board every plane can be booked on points for travel over summer.
The airline says there are more than five million seats available for travel from December 1 to March 31 next year. There are no blackout dates, which means flights can be booked on points over the busy Christmas and New Year period, when most states should have reopened their borders.
“We’re literally turning every available economy seat across the Virgin Australia domestic network into a reward seat for the next 48 hours,” Velocity Frequent Flyer chief executive Nick Rohrlach said. “This means we’re essentially making every Virgin Australia domestic aircraft a ‘Points Plane’.”
“Points Plane” is a term coined by Qantas in 2019 for specific flights where every seat could be booked on flights. In Qantas’ case, the seats were only available to book with points and could not be purchased with money.
Virgin Velocity members who do not have enough points for their chosen flight can buy more points with a 20 per cent discount as part of the promotion.
Mr Rohrlach said the most popular routes booked on points for the airline were on the Melbourne-Sydney-Brisbane triangle, with more than 100 million points redeemed in the past fortnight.
He said Cairns and the Gold Coast were also popular, with more people using points to book flights to the Queensland destinations now than before the pandemic.
Virgin’s Velocity frequent flyer program has more than 10 million members. The airline went into voluntary administration last year as the result of the downturn in air travel due to the pandemic and Velocity points were frozen in April for several weeks.
It was relaunched under new owner Bain Capital shortly after, which confirmed it would honour all members’ points.
The airline is currently giving away millions of points as part of a competition to encourage vaccination, with Velocity members who show proof of vaccination in the running to win up to one million points.
In August, the airline launched a new ‘Economy Lite’ fare, a no-frills option that does not include checked baggage or the option to choose your own seat without paying a fee.
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