Etihad Guest Silver, Gold and Platinum members receive some great perks when flying with Etihad Airways and a quirky selection of partner airlines, including Virgin Australia.
As an Australian it is relatively easy to earn Etihad Guest status as you can earn tier miles when flying with Etihad, Virgin Australia and selected other partner airlines. Etihad Guest miles are also a valuable currency for redeeming on Virgin Australia flights.
One unique benefit of Etihad Guest is that even Silver members receive lounge access at some airports. Silver members can access airport lounges in Abu Dhabi, Mahé and Belgrade when travelling on Etihad or Air Seychelles flights. Naturally, Gold and Platinum members also enjoy access to lounges at all other Etihad destinations, as well as many partner airline lounges for themselves and a guest.
Other benefits of Etihad Guest status include extended expiry of Etihad Guest miles, priority check-in and boarding, extra baggage allowance, bonus points on Etihad Airways flights, free seat selection and free or discounted Economy Space seats with extra legroom.
Benefits are also offered to Etihad Guest members with Gold or Platinum status when flying on some of Etihad’s partner airlines including Virgin Australia, ANA, Air Serbia and Korean Air. Etihad Guest Silver members are also entitled to priority boarding, priority check-in and additional baggage allowance when flying with Virgin Australia.
Earn Etihad status with Tier Miles or Tier Segments
To earn Etihad Guest status, you need to earn a minimum number of tier miles or tier segments within any 12 month period. You’ll then get to keep your status until the end of the month, plus 12 months. The requirement to renew your status in the following year is slightly lower.
Here are the requirements for earning Etihad Guest status:
|Earn Etihad Guest status||
25,000 tier miles
|50,000 tier miles
40 tier segments
125,000 tier miles
|Renew Etihad Guest status||
20,000 tier miles
|40,000 tier miles
30 tier segments
100,000 tier miles
Tier miles and segments are earned by flying with Etihad and selected airline partners. Here is the full list of eligible airlines for earning Etihad tier miles and segments:
- Etihad Airways
- Virgin Australia
- Air Serbia
- Air Seychelles
You can also earn tier miles with some Etihad Guest co-branded credit cards, none of which are available in Australia. In the past it was possible to earn Etihad Guest tier miles for shopping at Coles, but this partnership ended in 2018.
Earning Tier Miles and Tier Segments from flights
The number of tier miles and tier segments earned varies by partner airline. Note that, with many of Etihad’s partner airlines, you’ll only earn award miles and not tier miles or tier segments.
For Etihad Airways flights, you’ll earn 1 tier mile per mile flown in eligible fare classes. You’ll also earn 1 tier segment per Economy class flight, 2 per Business flight or 3 per First Class flight.
For Virgin Australia flights, you’ll earn tier miles and tier segments at the following rates:
With Virgin Australia, Economy Getaway and Elevate fares earn at the “Discounted Economy Class” rate. Economy Freedom tickets earn at the “Economy Class” rate.
See the Etihad Guest website for earn rates on other partner airlines.
Etihad Guest does not offer status matches or challenges.
Etihad Guest vs Velocity Frequent Flyer
Etihad Airways and Virgin Australia, of which Etihad owns a portion, have several airline partners in common.
Overall, it will likely be easier for many Australians to earn Virgin Australia status than Etihad status. Virgin Australia Velocity provides more opportunities to earn status credits on more airlines that are of interest to Australians, including Singapore Airlines. But this depends on your travel patterns.
Velocity Frequent Flyer also offers family pooling, which can make it easier for one family member to earn status if you’re travelling as a family. Etihad Guest similarly offers Family Membership, however tier miles with Etihad are not combined and are kept by each individual within a Family Membership.
If you fly with Etihad Airways enough to earn Silver status, for example, you might benefit from lounge access in Abu Dhabi for Silver members. You might also choose to earn status with Etihad Guest if you’re regularly flying on Air Serbia, Air Seychelles or Etihad Airways itself.