Transfer AMEX Or Citi Points To Virgin Atlantic And Get A 30% Bonus: Expanded Delta Award Space, ANA First Class Bargains, And More!

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Update: You can now also get a 30% bonus when you transfer Citi ThankYou points to Virgin Atlantic through 6/22. You can transfer points from cards like the Citi Premier and Citi Prestige .


You can login here get a 30% bonus when you transfer American Express Membership Rewards Points to Virgin Atlantic until 7/1. The miles typically transfer instantly.

Virgin Atlantic miles never expire as long as you redeem or earn at least 1 mile every 36 months.

In general, Virgin Atlantic charges high fuel surcharges that kill the value of many of their awards.

For example a round-trip coach ticket from JFK to London on Virgin Atlantic is just 20K miles (under 16K AMEX points), but the taxes and fuel surcharges add $472. Premium Economy is 35K miles+$794. Business class is 95K miles and you’ll also owe $1,544 in taxes and fuel surcharges. Ouch.

If you only need a one-way ticket from NYC to London it’s not as bad. 10K miles+$149 in coach, 17.5K miles+$249 in premium economy, or 47.5K miles+$624 in business class.

You can save money by booking travel on 2 one-way trips. A one-way ticket from London to NYC is 10K miles+$263 in coach, 17.5K miles+$452 in premium economy, or 47.5K miles+$583 in business class.

Or for example a round-trip coach ticket from JFK to Tel Aviv on Virgin Atlantic (service begins 9/25) is just 38K miles (under 30K AMEX points), but the taxes and fuel surcharges add $517. Premium Economy is 67K miles+$547. Business class is 151K miles and you’ll also owe $1,253 in taxes and fuel surcharges.

If you originate in Tel Aviv then the round-trip coach ticket from Tel Aviv to JFK on Virgin Atlantic is 38K miles plus $461. Premium Economy is 67K miles+$557. Business class is 151K miles plus $547.

If you only need a one-way ticket from NYC to Tel Aviv you’ll pay 19K miles+$240 in coach, 33.5K miles+$255 in premium economy, or 75.5K miles+$608 in business class.

You can save money by booking travel on 2 one-way trips. A one-way ticket from Tel Aviv to NYC is 19K miles+$249 in coach, 33.5K miles+$297 in premium economy, or 75.5K miles+$292 in business class.

Transfer to Hilton:

You can transfer increments of 10K Virgin Atlantic miles into 15K Hilton points. That means the equivalent of 7,692 ThankYou points can become 15K Hilton Honors points.

Flying on Delta:

There are some notable sweet spots on partner airlines:

Virgin Atlantic miles can be a bargain for flying on Delta. They often have saver award space, even when there’s none available on Delta.com!

Click here to access the Virgin Atlantic award booking page.

If you have problems typing in your desired airport you will need to click the location icon as shown below and manually search for your destination by country and state. If your destination still isn’t available you will have to call Virgin Atlantic to book award travel to that destination.

If the option to search for miles isn’t available you also may need to try selecting another airport, click on pay with miles, and then switch the airport. For example NYC to LAX didn’t work for me at first, but I switched the destination to San Francisco, clicked on pay with miles, and then switched back to Los Angeles.

On the search page you can select one-way or round-trip, exact dates, flexible within 1 week, or within 5 weeks. You can also change the class of service by clicking on “Show advanced options.” When you are viewing the award calendar you can toggle it to show direct flights only.

Here’s what’s fascinating. In general, partner airlines can only book saver awards.

If you search for JFK to TLV on 7/8 on Delta.com you’ll see that the award costs 160K miles. There’s a reason they’re called Skypesos.

 

But you can redeem 40K Virgin Atlantic miles for that same flight! That’s under 31K AMEX points with a 30% bonus!

 

Here is the Virgin award calendar for direct flights from JFK to Tel Aviv:

 

And here is the Delta award calendar for nonstop flights from JFK to Tel Aviv:

 

 

Want to fly business class nonstop from JFK to Paris?

It’s 105K miles if you use Delta Skypesos:

 

But you can book it with Virgin Atlantic for just 50K miles. That’s under 39K AMEX points thanks to the 30% bonus!

 

 

Unfortunately, there are fuel surcharges to fly on Delta to London, but other destinations should have no fuel surcharges.

Note that the website charges extra for flights with connections. You can try calling Virgin Atlantic at 800-365-9500 to see if they can price the award without the extra pricing for taking a connecting flight.


Flying on ANA:

ANA is an incredible Japanese airline with great first class suites that have very comfortable beds and amazing service. I reviewed them here towards the end of the 4th part of my Island Hopper adventure.

You only need 110K miles to fly round-trip from the west coast to Japan or 120K miles to fly round-trip from the east coast to Japan in first class. That’s under 85K AMEX points or under 93K AMEX points respectively, thanks to the 30% bonus.

Virgin Atlantic now collects fuel surcharges on ANA, but they are relatively low.

Here is the Virgin Atlantic award chart for travel on ANA:

 

Unfortunately, you do need to call Virgin Atlantic to book travel on ANA at 800-365-9500. You can search for ANA award space on United.com.

Round-trip travel is required on ANA awards.

You can fly in ANA first class to Tokyo/Narita from Chicago, Houston, JFK, Los Angeles, San Francisco, or Washington DC.

You can fly in ANA first class to Tokyo/Haneda from Chicago, JFK, or Los Angeles.

United charges a whopping 220K miles to fly round-trip from the US to Japan in ANA first class, but you can call Virgin Atlantic to book travel for under 93K AMEX points!

Search for first class saver awards on United.com and then call Virgin Atlantic to book:


DansDeals will receive compensation if you are approved for a credit card via a link in this post.

AMEX cards with transferable points include:

  • AMEX Blue Business Plus
  • AMEX Platinum Business
    • $595 annual fee, up to 75K points welcome bonus, earn 1.5 points per dollar on $5K+ transactions, $200 in annual airline fee credits, $200 in annual Dell credits, 1 year WeWork Global Office Space, Marriott and Hilton Gold status, 35% points rebate on paid airfare redemptions, Global Entry/Pre-check, AMEX Global lounge collection access.
    • For rates and fees of the AMEX Platinum Business Card, please visit here.
  • AMEX Gold Business Card
    • $295 annual fee, 35K points welcome bonus, 1 year G Suite Basic for 3 users and up to 1 year of ZipRecruiter Standard, earn up to 4 points per dollar.
    • For rates and fees of the AMEX Blue Business Plus Card, please visit here.
  • AMEX Gold Consumer Card
    • $250 annual fee, 54K points welcome bonus, $100 in annual airline fee credits, earn up to 4 points per dollar.
  • AMEX Platinum Consumer Card
    • $550 annual fee, up to 60K points welcome bonus, earn 5 points per dollar on airfare, $200 in annual airline fee credits, up to $200 in annual Uber credit, up to $100 in annual Saks credit, Marriott and Hilton Gold status, Global Entry/Pre-check, AMEX Global lounge collection access.
  • AMEX Everyday Preferred Consumer Card
    • $95 annual fee, up to 20K points welcome bonus, earn between 1.5-4.5 points per dollar everywhere with 30+ monthly transactions.
  • AMEX Everyday Consumer Card
    • No annual fee, up to 15K points welcome bonus, earn between 1.2-2.4 points per dollar everywhere with 20+ monthly transactions.

Are you targeted? Will you transfer points from AMEX to Virgin Atlantic to take advantage of this bonus? What other award sweet spots do you take advantage of?

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41 Comments On "Transfer AMEX Or Citi Points To Virgin Atlantic And Get A 30% Bonus: Expanded Delta Award Space, ANA First Class Bargains, And More!"

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.

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Green

Dan- does the AmEx Green card also allow transfer MR points? thanks!

The truth

When you find availability for Delta direct JFK – TLV for 40k with Virgin, you can usually book it with Flying Blue for 29k

Tammy

Which one is Flying blue?

Curious

And the taxes?

APoshiterYid

It’s not targeted. But there is a 10-20% to AC today that’s targeted.

Ari

Dan, I am looking at business class in November from JFK to TLV. by Delta.com, it is 170k miles (return) plus $100 taxes and on Virgin Atlantic, it is 151k (which can be now from Amex 105k!!) plus $1200 taxes. Is there any way to get the taxes from Virgin down from $1200 to $100?

Ahchiu

Any experience snagging 3 awards on ANA first?

lazertek

how long does it take for the miles and the bonus to post?

BG

How can i search Virgin Atlantic award availability if i don’t have any miles in my Virgin account? Thanks.

Ari

By advanced search, select pay with miles, and you will be able to search even without an account. To continue with the booking you will need an account and points

Paron

Do more Delta dates get added or it will forsure stay unavailable for the dates that are not available now?

Gingy

How would I book a flight on virgin Australia with Virgin Atlantic points?

Paron

Do award bookings have the same 24 hour refund policy?

joe

@dan is it worth transferring because of bonus even without any plan in mind?

alShamiyye

why would you limit yourself, these deals come up …

Miami

any reason there is no availability NYC/PHL – TLV the whole month of august?

United

July 31st is available. Direct on delta from jfk for only 40k

farmbochur

Did they just black out close-in availability? I searched at ~8pm EDT and found availability for PIT-LGA for 12.5k on 5/9 as well as many other dates in early to mid. Now I’m seeing everything blocked till 5/28.

Incidentally, I had to use your trick to initially pull up the search for PIT-LGA so I saw availability for other routes on 5/9 such as DTW-JFK. Now everything seems to be blocked.

Did DL just pull an AA?

LA

I had only one experience with VA – I’m not sure if it was typical or not, but it was nice. I was flying in economy JFK-TLV via LHR. The second leg was on ELAL, and I was given a seat in business class.
I’ll take that any day 🙂

Tzadik

Why does it show up is 20k for JFK-LHR in Economy and not 10k?

VS

Is it possible to search the expanded availability on expertflyer?

Points Refund

Just booked x2 on the Inaugural flight LHR-TLV in J.

myi

Chances of upper class opening in 2 weeks from now man-nyc?

U JAZZ

Is it possible to apply this promo for a transfer made in the beginning of April?

dave

Trying to book LAX-USM business any recommendation is ANA an option?

jake

Why am I having trouble viewing delta award availability on the virgin Atlantic site?? I followed everything in the post but I can’t seem to be able to view anything. Any recommendations??

jake

never mind its working its just there it is not showing an availability from JFK to TLV in August/September. Anyone know if I can expect for flights to open up if I wait??

Sz

Any good use of this to fly from LA to Toronto (nonstop)?
Thanks

genius

What about a 1 way awards for ANA alowed for 1/2 the 120K virgin miles possible? any reason you did not mention that?

sam

When does ANA First Class open up via miles? Is there a set time frame? Thanks!

Ari H

It Worked! Just booked JFK-TLV July 16 for 3 passengers for 120,000 (93,000 Amex) plus $16.
Now I just need a good tip to get home the next week.
Any way of using Bonvoy points for airlines? I discovered I have a stockpile of 1 Million+ points. Good stuff Dan. Thank you

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