Amex Membership Rewards 30% Transfer Bonus To Virgin Atlantic May 1-31

by on May 1, 2014 · 6 comments

in American Express, Virgin Atlantic

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From May 1 – 31, American Express Membership Rewards, the points program of cards like the Platinum Card and the Premier Rewards Gold as well as the new EveryDay cards, will be offering a 30% transfer bonus to Virgin Atlantic.

Screen Shot 2014-04-29 at 7.55.04 AM

There’s no need to register – the bonus will be hard-coded into the transfer page starting May 1. While this isn’t the most lucrative transfer bonus we’ve seen from Amex, it’s still decent, and a good alternative if you were already considering transferring either Membership Rewards points or if you were going to transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards from your Sapphire Preferred, Ink Bold or Ink Plus accounts at the usual 1:1 ratio to either program.

Comparison to Virgin America 30% Bonus

Unfortunately, the Amex 30% transfer bonus to Virgin America ended yesterday, April 30. But if you didn’t get in on that, at least now you have another choice. For future reference, though, I thought it would be interesting to compare the two bonuses in case this situation comes up again and you want to use your Amex points for travel on Virgin Atlantic.

Here’s the Virgin America award chart for Virgin Atlantic:

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Amex points transfer to Virgin America at a ratio of 2:1, but with the recent transfer bonus, you would get a 2:1.3 ratio. So for awards, you’re looking at using the following amounts of Amex points:

Economy: 15,000 Elevate points = 24,000 Amex points
Premium Economy: 25,000 Elevate points = 39,000 Amex points
Upper Class: 35,000 Elevate points = 54,000 Amex points

Here’s the Virgin Atlantic award chart:

Screen Shot 2014-04-29 at 7.59.55 AM

The taxes and fees on these tickets are approximately the same as what redeeming Virgin Atlantic miles would incur. Now here are the redemption levels from JFK-LHR using Virgin Atlantic miles and the amount of Amex points you’d need during the current transfer bonus:

Economy: 35,000 miles = 27,000 Amex points
Premium Economy: 55,000 miles = 43,000 Amex points
Upper Class: 80,000 miles = 62,000 Amex points

So if you have a choice in the future, you should probably go with the Virgin America transfer bonus, unless you have some miles in your Virgin Atlantic account and just need to top up for your specific award. Just remember to watch out for those high fuel surcharges on Virgin Atlantic redemptions!

For more information, also be sure to check out these posts:

Comparing Current Amex Transfer Bonuses to British Airways (20%) and Virgin Atlantic (30%)

Top 10 Lesser Known Amex Membership Rewards Transfer Partners

A History of Amex Transfer Bonuses

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • Savvy Consumer

    TPG, I think you can add that this transfer bonus can be useful to those people who wan’t to top-off their HHonors accounts for a particular stay. So it’s basically Amex – VA – Hilton = 1.3×1.5 = 1.95. So 1 Amex Point becomes 1.95 Hilton Points as opposed to the usual 1.5 if you transfer directly from Amex to Hilton.

  • Enoch

    Has Chase ever had a similar deal with Virgin and UR Points? I’d love for this to be available.

  • Savvy Consumer

    UR doesn’t do transfer bonuses

  • joeypore

    Really hoping for a BA transfer bonus soon…. :(

  • Zoe

    Any news about a transfer bonus for Emirates?

  • Stan

    i am new here and i need an advice:

    i bought business class Virgin-Atlantic (LAX-LHR). estimated amount of miles awarded is around 16,k. should i bank it with Atlantic? or should i bank it with its partners? is there any better way to get more use from these 16,k miles? please help. thank you!

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