Up to 120,000 bonus Points - American Express® Westpac Altitude Black Bundle
Enjoy up to 120,000 bonus Qantas or Altitude Points when you apply for the two-card bundle, are approved and meet the minimum spend of $4k on Mastercard and $3k on AMEX - Westpac Altitude Black Mastercard and the American Express Westpac Altitude Black Card. T&Cs apply. New cards only. Click here to apply. Offer ends 15th October 2019. Find out more. Click here to apply.
With 250,000 Virgin Australia Velocity frequent flyer points in the kitty, the world is quite literally your oyster – it's enough points to fly business class to almost any destination of your choosing, and in some cases, to even make that trip in first class.
But with so many options available on Virgin Australia and its web of airline partners including Etihad Airways, Singapore Airlines, Delta, Alitalia, Virgin Atlantic and more, what are the best ways to spend a quarter of a million Velocity points?
Australian Business Traveller explores your best business and luxury options, whether beginning your sojourn in Australia or extending an international business trip with some well-planned holiday time before returning home.
1. Fly Melbourne-Hong Kong return in business class, twice
Use your bounty of Velocity points on Virgin Australia's new flights to Hong Kong and you could take two return trips in business class with points to spare, or one return business class trip with a partner in tow.
You'll part with 59,500 points per person, per flight – 238,000 Velocity points overall – leaving 12,000 points in your account: enough for a one-way economy flight on many Virgin Australia domestic routes for one passenger.
Or, for Velocity Gold and Platinum members, stretch those points even further by booking paid Freedom economy fares to Hong Kong and using 27,500 points per flight to upgrade from economy to business class on four return trips (or two return trips with a partner), plus a further one-way flight, being 247,500 Velocity points in total.
2. Jet to New York and back in business class
Want to roam further afield? Then zip from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane to New York and back in business class with Virgin Australia, Delta Air Lines and Virgin America for a marginally higher 255,000 Velocity points.
It works like this: you'll first fly to Los Angeles in business class with Virgin Australia from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane – or with Delta from Sydney – before joining a connecting flight with Virgin America in 'first class' or Delta in 'Delta One' business class onwards to New York.
Because Virgin Australia, Virgin America and Delta are all listed under the more favourable 'Table 1' in the Velocity program and your travel forms a connecting journey, 127,500 Velocity points is all it takes to fly business class each way.
But be warned: Los Angeles to New York is an incredibly popular route for frequent flyers to book, so plan your flights well in advance and consider detouring via nearby cities like Boston to improve your chances of being able to book flights using your points.
3. Swan you way to London, Europe in Etihad Airways first class
Booking yourself a seat – or more accurately, an 'Apartment' – aboard what's arguably the world's best first class product can be done for 203,000 Velocity points from Australia all the way to the UK and Europe with Etihad Airways, one-way, flying via Abu Dhabi.
For that outlay, you'll find a separate bed and reclining chair waiting for you on the A380 along with an inflight shower and a lounge space shared between first class and business class passengers, or a smaller yet still-private first class suite with closing doors when flying on other aircraft types.
In the sky, meals can be customised to your liking by the dedicated first class chef, while access is provided to the Etihad AIrways first class lounge in Abu Dhabi during your transit, complete with a spa, gymnasium, dining room, relaxation area, and of course, shower facilities.
However, a 'carrier charge' of US$300 per first class flight will apply to your booking in addition to the usual government taxes and fees, setting you back US$600 (A$786) on a one-way journey to Europe, given the Abu Dhabi connection.
Add to that the cost of getting home – either in money or frequent flyer points from another airline – and it becomes something you'd book more as an occasional treat or as a once-in-a-lifetime experience, rather than your go-to move every time you travel (unless you have no shortage of frequent flyer points, in which case, carry on!).
4. Take two round-trips from Hong Kong to London
Hong Kong is a very popular destination for Aussie travellers: so while you're there, why not continue your trip onwards to London and back in Virgin Atlantic premium economy – either once with a partner or twice by yourself?
You'll part with 62,700 Velocity points per person, per flight: 250,800 Velocity points overall, but if your points balance sits just short at 250,000-even, converting just 2,000 Flybuys points into 870 Velocity points would more than cover you.
The journey from Hong Kong to London is an overnight flight, but what begins as a sleeping flight on the way home transforms into a daytime flight complete with inflight WiFi: which you could use to catch up on happenings in the office back home, or to prepare for any further meetings in Hong Kong.
5. Extend your New York business trip to London, Europe with Delta, Virgin Atlantic, Alitalia
Already visiting New York on a work trip? Take some holiday time while you're there and jet over to London in Delta One business class or Virgin Atlantic Upper Class (pictured) for just 99,000 Velocity points return, and you'll still have enough Velocity points to do it all again at the pointy end when next in New York.
That's only 198,000 Velocity points spent: so you could even take that trip a third time in economy (44,600 Velocity points, return), bringing your total spend to 242,600 Velocity points.
Outside of London, you could instead take two return business class trips from New York to other European destinations like Amsterdam with Delta or Rome with Alitalia for 119,000 Velocity points (59,500 Velocity points per one-way flight), but as these flights are longer and require more points to book, you won't have points enough left over for a third journey in economy.
How would you spend 250,000 Virgin Australia Velocity points? Share your tips in the comment box below!
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