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The 65,000 bonus-mile offer on the Virgin Atlantic World Elite MasterCard® credit card from Bank of America is back! It’s actually a bit more accurate to call it a 50,000-mile bonus offer since that’s what you can earn with a $2,500 minimum spend and adding an authorized user rather than having to put a ton of calendar year spending on it to earn the full bonus, but still, if it’s within your reach, might as well get the full 65,000 miles.
You might remember this offer came around for a limited time in December, and now it’s back, again for a limited time, though no end date has been specified.
•20,000 bonus miles after your first purchase
•25,000 additional bonus miles after you spend at least $2,500 in qualifying purchases in the first 90 days
•15,000 Anniversary bonus miles after qualifying purchases–you get 7,500 miles by spending $15,000 within the year, and 7,500 more if you hit a threshold of $25,000 in spend.
•5,000 bonus miles when adding two additional Cardmembers
•1.5 miles for every $1 spent on purchases
•3 miles per $1 spent directly with Virgin Atlantic
•Tier points that help you ascend to or maintain Silver or Gold status. You will earn one (1) tier point for every $2,500 spent with the card. A maximum two (2) tier points can be earned per month. A maximum of twenty-four (24) tier points can be earned per year.
•$90 annual fee, not waived
•1% foreign transaction fee
This offer is pretty much the same as when the card used to be an American Express (it’s still issued by Bank of America). Because you have to hit $25,000 in spending on the card to earn the extra 15,000 points,you might consider just getting it for the 50,000 miles you get for making $2,500 in purchases and adding two cardholders.
50,000 Virgin miles isn’t a huge bonus, but it’s almost enough to get you from Boston, New York or DC to London roundtrip in Premium Economy, which costs 55,000 miles along with an $810 co-pay for roundtrip, though sometimes that can be less, as is the case here:
It’s also enough for one-way in Upper Class from the US along with a co-pay, and while the redemption chart lists the co-pay on Upper Class tickets as $1,300 roundtrip, for one-way it can actually be much lower depending on which direction you’re flying. For instance, this one-way award from New York to London only has a co-pay of $416:
And that second flight listed is aboard the A330 in the airline’s new Upper Class.
Virgin Atlantic also has plenty of airline partners you can also use these miles on, including its US partners, Delta and Virgin America, as well as Air China, Air New Zealand, ANA, Cyprus Airways, Gulf Air, Hawaiian Airlines, Jet Airways, Malaysia Airlines, SAS, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, and Virgin Australia.
You can also transfer Virgin Atlantic miles to Hilton at a 1:2 ratio, so that 50,000-mile bonus equates to 100,000 Hilton HHonors points, which aren’t worth nearly as much after the last year’s devaluation, but which can still be worth something. For instance, the $1,200 villa at the Conrad Maldives that I stayed in would require 95,000 points for an award night, so you could cover at least a night with the sign-up bonus.
Although the $90 annual fee isn’t waived, those 50,000 miles could still be worth it to you, especially if you know you have a lot of spending coming up and want to consolidate it on one card to score those extra 15,000 anniversary miles. Plus, since it’s a Bank of America card, if you’ve been hitting Chase or Amex hard for bonuses lately and need to wait a while before your next application with either, this might be a decent bonus to consider in the meantime. With some great bonus categories and an annual fee that’s waived for the first year, the American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card has a lot going for it. If you don’t have PRG, now’s as good a time as any to add it to your wallet, as Amex added some great new benefits several months back.
With some great bonus categories and an annual fee that’s waived for the first year, the American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card has a lot going for it. If you don’t have PRG, now’s as good a time as any to add it to your wallet, as Amex added some great new benefits several months back.