You Can Now Use Delta SkyMiles to Upgrade Virgin Atlantic Flights

Jul 14, 2017

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Delta SkyMiles just became a little more useful, as Delta has announced that you’ll now be able to use miles to upgrade your seat on Virgin Atlantic flights.

Delta and Virgin Atlantic formed a transatlantic joint venture in 2014,so there have been some benefits when travelers with status travel on the airlines, as Diamond Medallion members have been able to use Global upgrades on Virgin Atlantic.

Now SkyMiles members will be able to use miles to upgrade from a paid on ticket on Delta-marketed, Virgin Atlantic operated flights between the US and UK.  There are two upgrade options for flyers according to Delta:

  • Upgrade from a purchased Virgin Atlantic Economy ticket to Virgin Atlantic Premium Economy or Virgin Atlantic Upper Class
  • Upgrade from a purchased Virgin Atlantic Premium Economy ticket to Virgin Atlantic Upper Class

Delta also said that upgrades are only available on purchased economy tickets with the Y, B, M, H, Q, or K fare class while premium economy tickets must have the P, A, or G fare class.

Now this might not be the best deal or way to use your SkyMiles. Unfortunately Delta doesn’t publish an award chart or upgrade costs. According to a 2015 report from TPG, upgrading on US to Europe routes will cost you 60,000 SkyMiles on Y/B/M fares and 80,000 miles on S/H/Q/K fares one-way.

If these are the correct numbers (we’ve reached out to Delta for comment) then it’s a pretty terrible deal to upgrade, since premium economy runs 55,000 SkyMiles +$5.60 one-way and Virgin Upper Class is 85,000 miles +$5.60 one-way. Basically, you’re only saving 5,000 miles by upgrading vs. booking an award outright, but you’ve already paid for a full-fare ticket — however, it’s possible that this move is targeted at business travelers whose employers purchase full-fare tickets, and then they can use their own miles to upgrade if they so choose.

Upgrades must be completed 24 hours before departure and you’ll have to call in to a SkyMiles representative to find out the actual pricing and if there’s availability (at 1-800-323-2323 for SkyMiles members or Medallion members can call through their dedicated phone line).

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases within the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn a $200 statement credit after your first Delta purchase within the first three months. Offer ends 7/28/21.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

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More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles after spending $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months and a $200 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Limited Time Offer: Plus, get a 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable 15.74%-24.74%. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
0% on purchases for 12 months
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

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