I have 450,000 Velocity points and was wanting to fly business class for my wife and I in September 19. What is the best way to go? I noted that this site mentions 95,000 points each way per person, but the Virigin website says anything but?
I know the “I Fly Flat” program charges $2.5k and 191,000 points per person for the experience. Is there a cheaper and equivalent option?
Any help appreciated.
You need to look for a “Business Reward” seat — those seats are 95,500 Velocity points per person each way. If you choose to pay the taxes etc with points (which I don’t recommend you do), then the cost in points will rise to 114,500 points. What you don’t want to do is get an “Any Seat” reward, which (as you seem to have discovered) are significantly more expensive and not good value.
As you also seem to have discovered, Business Reward seats are really hard to come by on Virgin flights to Los Angeles (or any flight from Australia to LAX for that matter). You might get (very) lucky and find seats available on the dates you want, but you might also need to be a bit flexible and creative in terms of how you get there — you could convert your points to KrisFlyer and try United, or fly via Japan or somewhere else in Asia, etc, etc. This is where the outfits like “I Fly Flat” might come in handy if you can’t manage to find seats yourself.
All the best but, as I say, finding business reward seats to LAX is not easy.
Do you have velocity status? Platinum or Gold?
Where are you flying from SYD/BNE/MELB?
So you’re flying out on the 19th September – you may have found availability 210/280/300/310 days out. I’m getting married in the USA next week and scoured Velocity every day from 320 days out and I have secured J class flights Per-Bne-Lax (280 days out) and return Lax-Bne-Per (215 days out).
Couple of options:
- UpgradeMe Points – If you have Platinum/Gold Status, buy a Premium Economy ticket – and upgrade when availability shows up 3 to 7 days out from departure. I scored this 2 years ago from Syd-Lax – best flight I have been on – spent the whole time at the bar with other passengers.
- UpgradeMe Bid with Cash – pay for the difference from a Premium Economy ticket – bids start from $800 one way each (check out the AFF forums for successful bids). Usually get the bidding option 3 to 7 days out from departure.
Risky Option – this method is where you book your flights 2 to 7 days out from departure using points only. Not the best option for highly organized people who like to book months out 🙂
You will find Business Reward Availability 2 to 10 days out from departure from BNE/SYD/MEL and also return from LAX (BNE seems to be the winner here with available seats) – if you do a booking with Points right now, you will see at least 2 seats per plane scattered from BNE, MEL and SYD to LAX over the next 5 days – even saw some at 14-21 days out (- check, Use Points+Pay, search One Way only for 2 guests (not return flight)). If booking from SYD – make sure it is a VA flight, not Delta if you want the better VA plane with bar and seat selection.
As sixtyeight mentions – pay for your taxes in cash and not points.
Best to find flights on a Mon/Tues/Wed both ways for better availability – try to avoid weekends as harder to find (stay away from the Saturday BNE-LAX 11am morning flight if you are flying back from the USA east coast – I made this mistake, as you will need to fly back to LAX on the Friday with accommodation overnight ).
Book all your accommodation which allows 24hr cancellation – with this option, due to the time sensitivity of booking the flights, if you don’t get the timing right, you can cancel the hotel etc with no penalty.. (check Expedia/Booking dot com etc)
It’s a great flight if you can get onto it – don’t give up – if you let me know exact dates you will be leaving and returning, I can let you know if they pop up.
Thank you RyFlys,
Sorry, my question was a little vague. My velocity status is only red, and stuck around the 110 points – and unlikely to change. So the upgrade via points won’t be an option.
I will be flying from and returning to Brisbane.
Flight dates are departing 7th Sept, 19 – returning 3rd Oct, 19.
Sounds like I’m attempting to push it up a very steep hill considering I’m wanting 2 seats?? And then I was hoping for them side by side!!! Don’t ask for much huh?