Our members are outraged by Virgin’s plans to remove key frequent flyer benefits from next month. Gold & Platinum flyers will no longer receive perks including “Fly Ahead”, complimentary seat selection or bonus points when flying on Virgin’s cheapest Economy tickets. Even when flying on more expensive tickets, Virgin’s most loyal flyers may soon be forced to pay a fee to change to an earlier flight.
The changes come as Virgin introduces new fare structures on all routes. From 7 September, Domestic Economy tickets will be broken into 3 new categories: Getaway, Elevate and Freedom. The cheapest Getaway fares will continue to include free baggage and on-board snacks, as well as Velocity points & status credits. However, additional benefits such as seat selection will be sold for an extra charge. Similar changes will also be made to fares on international routes.
Some Platinum members say they are considering dumping their Velocity membership as they no longer see the value. They view the changes as an insult to their loyalty. Other members opine that these changes will particularly detriment corporate travellers bound to a “best fare of the day” policy.
On the other hand, some members will continue to support Virgin. They understand that the airline is losing money, and that changes are needed to help it recover. One member also points out that key benefits such as family pooling and effective priority boarding remain in place.
Have your say on the changes HERE.
(P.S. If you currently hold status with Virgin Australia and are considering switching to Qantas, you may wish to enquire about a “Status Challenge”. Find out more HERE.)