Through Virgin Australia’s frequent flyer tie-up with Singapore Airlines, Aussies can now earn Velocity points when travelling across the breadth of the Star Alliance.
That includes on United’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner flights from Melbourne to Los Angeles, Air Canada’s services between Sydney and Vancouver and EVA Air’s Brisbane-Taipei runs, along with flights on other carriers such as Air China, Asiana, Lufthansa and more.
It’s done by using Singapore Airlines’ own Star Alliance KrisFlyer scheme to earn miles where you can’t with Velocity – such as on Thai Airways flights from Sydney to Bangkok – and then converting those KrisFlyer miles into Virgin Australia Velocity points on a 1.35:1 basis.
Here’s what you could earn when flying outside of Virgin Australia’s regular web of partners.
Thai Airways: Sydney to Bangkok
For every mile flown in Thai Airways business class, Singapore Airlines’ frequent flyers reel in a simple 1.25 KrisFlyer miles – or a total of 11,653 miles on a return trek from Sydney to Bangkok.
When shipped to Velocity under the 1.35:1 conversion rate, they transform into 8,631 Virgin Australia frequent flyer points, and can be moved across at no charge.
Just 4,900 Velocity points is enough for a one-way upgrade from flexible economy to business class on a short Sydney-Melbourne flight, and if you use a Velocity-earning credit card to book the Thai Airways journey, you’ll wind up with more than enough points for a better seat in both directions.
KrisFlyer miles – and ultimately, Velocity points – can also be earned in first class and economy with Thai, as they can on eligible tickets with every Star Alliance airline.
Asiana, Air Canada: Sydney to Seoul, Vancouver
Unlike with Thai Airways, Singapore Airlines only awards 1.25 KrisFlyer miles on Air Canada’s most expensive business class fares in the J ‘fare bucket’, and one mile per mile flown on every other seat at the pointy end.
That sees Sydneysiders pocketing roughly 15,514 KrisFlyer miles on a return Vancouver journey of the same length, which translates into 11,491 Velocity points.
Asiana’s Sydney-Seoul business class flights also reward the highest-paying business class passengers the most, with 1.35 KrisFlyer miles per mile flown against a mix of 1.25 and 1 on the less-expensive tickets up the front.
On midrange business fares in the C, D and Z fare buckets, KrisFlyer members are in for around 12,910 miles on the round trip from Sydney to Seoul, or 9,562 Velocity points once converted.
United: Sydney and Melbourne to Los Angeles
Bound for Los Angeles on United’s new non-stop Dreamliner flights from Melbourne?
Following the trend of rewarding more expensive fares, travellers on United’s J, C and D-type tickets pick up 1.25 KrisFlyer miles per mile flown, while the cheaper Z and P fares earn at parity on the same distance – and the same as a regular economy ticket.
On a flexible business class fare, you’re looking at a haul of approximately 19,802 KrisFlyer miles (ultimately 14,668 Velocity points), while all other mileage-eligible tickets across the Pacific serve up roughly 15,842 KrisFlyer miles, to become 11,734 Velocity points.
Flights between Sydney and LA are slightly shorter in distance, with travellers instead earning 14,976 KrisFlyer miles or 11,093 Velocity points on most return fares, and 18,720 miles or 13,866 Velocity points in the expensive seats.
The fine print
While you’re able to convert points across from Singapore Airlines, you can’t carry status from one airline to another.
For example, flights taken with Thai Airways, United and others are great for earning points on their lonesome, but you can take to the skies as often as you like without ever moving beyond Velocity’s Red-level entry tier.
The take-away? Always book and fly with Virgin Australia or its own, direct frequent flyer partners if you want to climb the Velocity status ladder – which you’ll be able to do with Air New Zealand, Singapore Airlines and more.
While these airlines are card-carrying Star Alliance members, they’re also linked-up with Velocity for easy points and status credits, with South African Airways joining them early in the New Year.
New to KrisFlyer? Get started with our in-depth guides:
- Singapore Airlines' KrisFlyer scheme for Aussie travellers
- How to convert KrisFlyer miles into Velocity points
- Using KrisFlyer miles to upgrade to business class
- Singapore Airlines first class and A380 Suites upgrade guide
Then, begin planning your Star Alliance travel to earn Velocity points via KrisFlyer:
- Star Alliance: what Australian frequent flyers need to know
- How to plan and book a Star Alliance round-the-world trip
- Air India joins Star Alliance
- Seven one-stop Star Alliance routes to Europe from Australia
- Star Alliance’s hidden gem: the Circle Pacific fare
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