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American Express announced today that Virgin America will be a transfer partner of Membership Rewards starting October 5, 2011. The transfer ratio won’t be released until the program goes live, but I hope it’s at a 1:1 ratio, which would mean each Amex point transferred would equate to 1.6-2.1 cents towards Virgin America airfare. See my rundown of the Virgin America Elevate program here.
This is good news, because the program loses Continental as of October 1, however Virgin America won’t nearly fill that void. Ideally I’d love to see American Airlines or US Airways get added to the program, but I doubt that is going to happen.
I’ll save my analysis until the details are announced, but overall this is good news because the more options to use our points, the better.
While this premium card has one of the highest annual fees on the market, it has several valuable perks that could make it worthwhile, depending on your travel patterns. These include a $200 annual airline rebate, lounge access, free Hilton Gold status and free Starwood Preferred Guest Gold status.
- Earn 40,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
- 5X points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
- $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 a year for baggage fees and more at one airline. Terms Apply.
- As a Platinum Card Member, you can enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations worldwide. Terms Apply.
- Enroll to enjoy the benefits of complimentary Hilton HHonors™ Gold Status with your Platinum Card.®
- No interest charges because you pay your balance in full each month.
- Terms and Conditions apply.
- See Rates & Fees