Virgin Australia’s highly attractive status match targeting top-tier frequent flyers of Qantas and dozens of other airlines ends at midnight (AEST) today, Monday September 26 – if you haven’t yet applied, get in now before this unique opportunity disappears.
Virgin Australia is making a play for millions of top-tier Qantas frequent flyers through a status match promotion targetting Qantas Golds and Platinums.
But while the cheekily-named Switch-A-Roo promotion is aimed squarely at dislodging loyalists from the Flying Kangaroo – especially those disgruntled by the airline’s recent well-publicised performance woes – it’s not limited to Qantas alone.
The Switch-A-Roo Discover Gold status match offer, to give its full and formal name, is wide open to elite frequent flyers from any airline, as long as it’s not a Virgin Australia partner.
Think Air New Zealand, American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Delta Air Lines, Emirates, Lufthansa and its several siblings, Malaysia Airlines… indeed, the bulk of the Star Alliance, Oneworld and SkyTeam groups.
All you need is to hold the equivalent of Velocity Gold status or above “with a frequent flyer program of an airline that is not currently partnered with Velocity” – oh, and of course to be a member of Virgin’s Velocity Frequent Flyer program in the first place (it’s fast and free to join at join.velocityfrequentflyer.com).
“Virgin Australia is known for being playful, and the Switch-A-Roo campaign is a really great example of us putting our energetic spirit on show for well-travelled Australians who are looking to switch their loyalty to a modern and vibrant airline,” suggests Velocity Frequent Flyer CEO Nick Rohrlach.
Rohrlach says the status match targets “customers of competitor airlines who want to move their loyalty to Virgin Australia, but don’t want to start from the bottom of the status ranks.”
“We know we have a compelling offer for business and leisure travellers who have less discretionary spend amid rising inflation but want to fly with an airline who offers some of the best value airfares in the market” along with lounges, priority security screening “and all the comforts Virgin Australia can provide their guests without the high price tag.”
How to get your Velocity Gold or Platinum status match
Virgin’s Switch-A-Roo status match runs through to midnight (AEST) on Monday September 26, 2022 – so the clock’s ticking!
To apply for your Velocity Gold or Platinum status match, take a photo or scan of your loyalty card with a competing airline and email this to [email protected] with the following details
- your full name
- your Velocity membership number
- an indication of your competing airline status equivalency to either Velocity Gold or Platinum
Be sure to send your email from the same email address registered with your Velocity membership.
One caveat: the promotion is not available to Velocity members who’ve “held Silver status or above with Velocity since April 2020.”
Virgin Australia says it may take up to four weeks “to process your Switch-A-Roo Discover Gold application and apply your trial status” – and because status match applications “will be processed in the order received” it’s a matter of first come, first served and first to fly with those Velocity perks.
Another reason to apply ASAP: “a limited number of Switch-A-Roo Discover Gold trials are available,” the airline says.
"Virgin Australia & Velocity reserve the right to end this promotion at their discretion, based on the number of status match applications received.”
In other words, should this become too popular, Virgin can shut down the status match promotion ahead of the September 26 deadline.
How to keep your Velocity Gold or Platinum status
Once your Velocity Discover Gold trial is activated, you’ll enjoy three months of Velocity Gold status in the form of a special ‘Discover Gold Status trial membership’ (this is also the same starting point for applicants with Velocity Platinum-equivalent status).
Your benefits when flying with Virgin Australia during those three months includes complimentary lounge access, priority boarding, preferential seating, a higher checked baggage allowance and bonus Velocity Points.
But this three-month trial is really about locking in your Velocity Gold or Platinum status for a full 12 months, and that’s achievable with as little as a single flight.
To retain Velocity Gold for 12 months you need to book one Virgin Australia flight and earn 80 Status Credits during the three-month Discover Gold trial membership.
As a quick reference, you can easily hit that 80 status credit threshold with
- a one-way business class flight on east-west routes
- a one-way business class flight between Brisbane and Melbourne
- a return business class flight between Sydney and Melbourne
- two return economy flex flights between Sydney and Melbourne
Also worth noting: those 80 status credits can be earned on Virgin’s partner airlines (if you lost your Velocity number against a flight with the likes of Air Canada, Etihad Airways, Hawaiian Airlines, Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines and United Airlines).
They can even come from Velocity’s innovative family pooling feature, which lets you have the status credits earned by family members directed into your Velocity account.
Another avenue: if your Velocity account is linked to your Flybuys account, scan your Flybuys card every time you shop at Coles, Liquorland or First Choice Liquor Market to earn one status credit for every $100 spent (capped at 10 status credits per month). This could be all it takes to close the gap between your flights and that 80 status credit target.
If you requested a status match to Velocity Platinum by dint of your Platinum-grade tier with a competing airline, you’ll need to earn 200 status credits during that same three-month Discover Gold trial membership period.
However, while family pooling still counts, your 200 status credits must come from flights on Virgin Australia, not partner airlines.
Virgin Australia says it can take up to eight weeks “to process and apply your upgrade to Platinum once the fast-track requirements have been met.”