30% Transfer Bonus from American Express to Virgin Atlantic

Many have asked me about my favorite credit card points program. There’s no question – I’ve used Chase Ultimate Rewards many, many times. But if there was one rewards program that had caught my attention lately, it’s American Express Membership Rewards.

How so? I look for the bonus transfer offers that Amex offers during the year. I had taken advantage of transfer offers to British Airways which allowed my family to get to Hawaii for around 17,000 points per person (after the bonus).

How we booked six FREE tickets to Hawaii for the 4th of July (worth over $4000)

Then last summer, my biggest win yet. A $35,000 first class round trip from Los Angeles to Japan – we used American Express Membership Rewards and transferred them to Virgin Atlantic, and our only out of pocket cost was around $534. That offer ended in early July and I wasn’t sure when it would be back again.

Walking around Nara in Japan

How we booked 2 ANA 1st class tickets to Japan ($35K value) using points!

Wait no more!! It’s back!!!

The 30% transfer bonus from American Express Membership Rewards to Virgin Atlantic is back.

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This bonus offer is set to end on December 28, 2019.

How to stretch your points

Most of you know that my travel goal does not revolve around traveling first class or staying in top notch properties. Since I have a huge family, I focus on stretching my points that would allow us to travel more, travel together, no matter the class of the flight. But when opportunity knocked which gave me a chance to fly first class, I opened the door.

My post that I wrote in the summer of 2019 will show you how I needed 220,000 points to book two first class round trip tickets to LA to Japan. But due to the 30% transfer bonus, I only used 170,000 American Express Membership Rewards which earned me 51,000 bonus (with the 30% bonus offer). Here’s how it looked.

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What type of flight did this get me?

With the 170,000 American Express Membership Rewards and $534 in fees, we were able to get two round trip tickets to Japan (from Los Angeles). The value? Nearly $35,000.

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Image courtesy of ANA

The best ways to transfer your Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Miles

My post above shows how easy it was to transfer and book our first class trip to Japan worth $35,000.

I have to try other ways of using my Flying Club miles but I’ve seen posts where they could be of great value when you use the Flying Club miles with Delta or South African Airways as shared by The Points Guy.

I have quite a few American Express Membership Reward points, and I’ll be looking in to this over the next few weeks before the offer expires on December 28, 2019. I’ll make sure to share what I end up doing.

Do not transfer speculatively

This is key when it comes to transferring points to partner airlines or hotels. If you see a lucrative bonus transfer offer, make sure you have a trip or booking in mind and book it immediately. Why? If you transfer for the sake of getting the bonus offer without any immediate booking in mind, should you have a change of heart, the points are now stuck with transfer partner, and you cannot move them back to American Express.

Let me know if you end up doing this. I can definitely give you pointers on how to find flights using ANA to Japan.

Osaka

 

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