Velocity transfer promotions are usually a great deal for those who had a specific Virgin Australia or partner flight redemption in mind—and this month’s offer has been sweetened for elite Amex cardholders.
For those with large points balances outside of Velocity who know they will want to redeem Velocity points sometime in the future, it could be worth transferring speculatively.
With the aggressive size of this bonus, it could also be worth considering transferring points to KrisFlyer miles via Velocity during the bonus period for some additional KrisFlyer miles.
Offer 1: Velocity Gold or Platinum status for selected American Express cardholders transferring 250,000+ points
If you hold an American Express Platinum, Business Platinum or Centurion card, then it is worth checking your email to see if you are targeted for this offer.
In short, here is what you need to go to earn status until 31 May 2019 (one year from the end of the promotion):
You’ll also be eligible for the up to 40% bonus point offer described below.
Velocity Gold status will afford you benefits such as lounge access, priority check-in and priority boarding, whilst Platinum will also add benefits like complimentary Economy X seat selection and more upgrade opportunities.
If you already hold status, then you can re-qualify for another year by transferring the same amount of points.
Here are the full terms and conditions (sent by email to Point Hacks Team Member Keith but not available on a public website):
The promotion period for this offer is 1 May to 31 May 2018 (‘Promotion Period’). This offer is only available to American Express Centurion Members, American Express Platinum Card Members and American Express Platinum Business Card Members. To receive an upgrade to Platinum Velocity membership for 12 months, you must transfer a total of 500,000 Membership Rewards points in one or more transactions during the Promotion Period. To receive an upgrade to Gold Velocity membership for 12 months, you must transfer a total of 250,000 Membership Rewards points in one or more transactions during the Promotion Period. A minimum of 2,000 Membership Rewards points may be redeemed for Velocity Points at any one time. The 12 month period will commence from the end of the Promotion Period. In order to maintain your Status at the end of the 12 month period (on your Review Date), you will need to have earned the required Status Credits and flown Eligible Sectors. For more information on the requirements to maintain Status, please visit velocityfrequentflyer.com/content/Status/HowItWorks/
Your new membership pack will be mailed to you within 4 weeks of the end of the Promotional Period, please ensure your address details in your Velocity account match the details of your Membership Rewards account. Upgrades will only be available to the primary Velocity account holder (“Beneficiary”), Status membership cannot be gifted or transferred to another member, this includes “Contributing Accounts” (as defined in the Velocity Membership Terms and Conditions) set up via Family Pooling.
If you are already an existing Velocity Platinum member, you will be eligible to maintain your Platinum membership for 12 months from the end of the Promotional Period by transferring 500,000 Membership Rewards points during the Promotion Period.
If you are already an existing Velocity Gold member, you will be eligible to maintain your Gold membership for 12 months from the end of the Promotional Period by transferring 250,000 Membership Rewards points during the Promotion Period.
This promotion also ran in November 2017—see Offer history.
Offer 2: 15-40% bonus on Velocity transfers with up to 60% for some cardholders
Between 1 and 31 May, you can get a bonus when transferring your bank and hotel programs and flybuys points over. Transfers should be immediate but could take up to three business days, so do factor that into your bookings.
It is a little complicated, with partners are split into two groups and specific partners offering booster offers.
If you have points with one of the partners below, then you’ll get a flat 20% bonus, with ANZ Rewards customers getting a 30% booster (total 50% bonus) and ANZ Business Rewards a 20% booster (total 40% bonus).
If you have points with one of these partners, your transfer bonus is tiered.
- 1-100,000 Velocity Points = 15% bonus
- 100,001 to 250,000 Velocity Points = 20%
- 250,001 to 500,000 Velocity Points = 25%
- 500,001 to 750,000 Velocity Points = 30%
- 750,001+ Velocity Points = 40%
Cardholders with Citi, Diners Club, Suncorp, BoQ and Card Services get a 20% booster bonus on top of the figures above, meaning the highest total would be a 60% bonus when transferring 750,001 or more points.
In the past, booster offers for Amex Platinum Charge cardholders have sometimes appeared later in the month, so if you have access to these American Express Membership Rewards points of the Ascent variety and can hold off, then that might be a good decision.
During previous promotions, there have been reports that some CommBank and Westpac customers have received bonuses even though they were not officially included in the offer. This promotion could be the same but there are no guarantees of that.
If you transferred your points up to and including 30 April, you will not receive a bonus. If you transfer right on 31 May, you will still receive the bonus even though it can take 72 hours for your points to arrive in your account.
Singapore Airlines Business Class is one of the best uses of Velocity Points
General tips and hints for Velocity’s transfer and redemption promotions
I’m a big fan of the bonus points for transfers from partner programs, and redemption discount promotions from Virgin Australia’s Velocity program, which run around twice per year.
The transfer bonus points are usually credited alongside the main stash of points you transfer over, so you don’t have to wait around for them to show up.
If you’re planning on making a transfer to empty out one of your credit card program or flybuys accounts, then you’ll probably want to wait as late as possible in the promo period to ensure you can transfer the most possible points.
They have previously offered double promotions – encouraging those of you with stockpiled credit card program points an incentive to move them over to Velocity, whilst also rewarding those with points in their accounts already – although 15% seems to be the norm.
Any discount on redemptions is usually for around 12 months from the date of booking, so if you hold on until the end of the promotion it opens up the calendar for you. The redemption discount is applicable to any Virgin-operated flight, both domestic and international.
Other ways to take advantage of redemption deals for future travel on Virgin Australia
You can also book travel and change the date after the discount promotion ends, copping a change fee ($60 change fee on international flights) but additional points will be charged if this is done outside the promotional period.
This is a significant boost to the value of Velocity points during the promotional period, so well worth considering a redemption if you have upcoming travel in mind for the promo period.
Sometimes knowing how Velocity has run this offer in the past may help you to decide if you should take advantage of it now. Here’s the offer history:
- May 2018: 15-60% bonus for bank rewards and hotel loyalty programs and flybuys (tiered); earn Velocity Gold or Platinum status by transferring Amex points (only for Platinum, Business Platinum and Centurion cardholders)
- February 2018: 30% off Velocity redemptions for Virgin Australia and some partner travel in all classes; 15% bonus for Amex and flybuys
- December 2017: 15-30% bonus for bank rewards programs (tiered); 15% for flybuys
- November 2017: 15% bonus for bank and hotel rewards programs and flybuys; 20% bonus for Amex Platinum Charge; 30% bonus for ANZ Rewards; earn Velocity Gold or Platinum status by transferring Amex points (only for Platinum, Business Platinum and Centurion cardholders)
- July 2017: 10% bonus for flybuys; 15% for Amex; 25% bonus for Amex Platinum
- June 2017: 15% bonus for bank rewards programs; 20% bonus for hotel rewards programs
- May 2017: 15% bonus for bank and hotel rewards programs; 25% for Amex Platinum, Business Platinum and Centurion; 50% bonus for ANZ Rewards
- March 2017: 15% bonus for flybuys
- November-December 2016: 15% bonus for Amex and flybuys; 30% bonus for Amex Platinum
- May 2016: 15% bonusfor bank and hotel rewards programs; 25% bonus for Amex Platinum & tiered bonuses for ANZ Rewards
- November 2015: 15% bonus
- May 2015: 15% bonus, 15% discount
- November 2014: 15% bonus
- May 2014: 10% bonus, 10% discount
- October 2013: 15% bonus, 15% discount
- April 2013: 15% bonus
- October 2012: 15% bonus
- February 2012: 30% discount on domestic redemptions
- September 2011: 20% bonus
Are these promotions a good deal?
These Velocity promotions are a usually great deal if you have a stash of credit card program points you know you want to transfer over to Velocity.
A 15% bonus is becoming common now, running at the same times each year—it makes a great benefit for those who can plan ahead and hold cards from one of the included credit card rewards program partners that usually benefit.
If you have no short-term plans to redeem points with Velocity, then it’s probably not worth making the transfer though – the loss in flexibility of your points (because they then can’t be transferred to be used anywhere else) is not usually going to be worth picking up the bonus.
There are two exceptions to this: primarily, if you have card in a credit card rewards program that has few transfer partners, like CommBank Awards—and know you won’t be cashing them out for gift cards or other merchandise and want frequent flyer points instead, then you might as well transfer now and pick up the bonus.
Secondly, if you have a large points balance outside of Velocity and a low Velocity balance, then it could make sense to move some points over speculatively in advance of redeeming them in future.
What about Velocity to KrisFlyer transfers?
Another transfer option/incentive to note is if you have plans to redeem KrisFlyer miles.
If you have a card which has a lower transfer rate to KrisFlyer than to Velocity, then a 15% bonus may be enough to take the maths over the edge where transferring to KrisFlyer via Velocity during a bonus period gives you more KrisFlyer miles than if you transferred direct to KrisFlyer.
In short, it’s complex, but there’s room for some marginal gains for those cards moving points to KrisFlyer Miles via Velocity during these promo periods.