Business class is the highest level of service and comfort on Virgin Australia. You’ll find it on most flights to/from major hubs and cities across Australia, plus international hops to Bali, Fiji, Japan, New Zealand, Samoa and Vanuatu.
Consisting of eight leather recliners in a 2-2 layout – often (though not always) with a perspex screen between the business and economy cabins – the experience includes lounge access where available, complimentary food and drinks, WiFi and more.
Passengers also receive a boosted checked luggage allowance of two 32kg bags, versus a single 23kg bag whenever flying on a Choice or Flex economy fare.
Best Virgin Australia 737 business class seats
Taking wing across the majority of its Boeing 737 fleet – this includes the -700 and -800s, as well as the newer MAX 8 – Virgin Australia business class is more or less the same no matter which bird you fly on.
That said, there are some differences worth noting (although these will become less common as the airline completes its $110 million 737 fleet upgrade by late 2025.)
Featuring a 38-inch (92cm) pitch and 19.5-inch (49cm) width, each leather recliner sports an adjustable headrest and tray table tucked in the arm rest, plus a small slide-out drinks shelf and universal power outlet to keep your devices charged up.
That power outlet is handy on longer runs, as Virgin offers streaming-only entertainment plus WiFi Internet access on selected aircraft. Free WiFi is provided to business class and Velocity Platinum members for the duration of the flight.
(Look for a WiFi symbol on the departures board at the gate or lounge prior to boarding, or on the overhead locker of Row 1 to see if WiFi is on your flight.)
While a seat in Row 1 would generally be viewed as the best option, given you’re most likely to be served first and receive your preferred meal choice, there’s a slight trade-off for this front row experience in both storage and leg-room.
The bulkhead means bags need to go in the overhead bin for take-off and landing, while the wall-mounted (and rather stiff) storage pouch is smaller than the seatback one for Row 2.
With that in ind, Row 2 is your best choice, as those seats benefit from greater legroom (under the one in front), and if you have a long journey ahead, that extra space to stretch your legs is definitely appreciated.
Refurbished aircraft and the newer Boeing 737 MAXs feature a new Virgin Australia business class seat which, while similar to its predecessor, is sleeker and more streamlined.
Key differences are a small legrest, water bottle nook between the seats and additional storage areas either side of your legs, all of which add up to a more user-friendly setup.
Virgin Australia 737 business class: lounge access
More than just a roomier seat, holding a business class ticket unlocks entry to Virgin lounges in seven locations across Australia: Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.
You can enjoy complimentary food and drinks (think barista-made coffee, tea, juice, Australian wines and a selection of beers), as well as high-speed internet access and showers. Bookable meeting rooms are available in select lounges.
Business class passengers travelling with carry-on only can also make use of a Premium Lounge Entry in Sydney and Brisbane, which bypasses the main departures hall thanks to a dedicated check-in and security screening.
Opening times are rather limited for both premium entries though: weekdays between 5am-8am for Sydney and 8am-10am for Brisbane.
Virgin Australia does not have its own international lounges. However, Velocity frequent flyers and business class passengers can access domestic lounges in Adelaide and the Gold Coast prior to international flights, as they share the same terminal.
Virgin Australia 737 business class: onboard experience
One of the benefits of Virgin Australia business class is food and drink – and it goes far beyond the cup noodles, cookies and sandwiches available for purchase in economy class.
The experience generally begins with a glass of sparkling wine, water or juice after boarding, followed by a choice of two white wines, two reds and sparkling (as well as non-alcoholic options) throughout the flight.
Rather than perusing the paid menu found in economy, business class travellers are offered a specially-prepared meal, with the cabin manager taking orders shortly after take-off.
Depending on the time of day you may be served a breakfast quesadilla and pastry, chicken toastie plus cheese and crackers on the side, or perhaps quiche with mashed potato and tomato relish. It’s not what you’d call gourmet, but it does hit the spot.
Assorted snacks such as chips, chocolate bars and nuts/pretzels are available on request.
How to book Virgin Australia 737 business class with points
Frequent flyers with a stash of Velocity Points can redeem them for reward seats in economy and business class via the Virgin Australia website. (Alternatively, you can make a booking over the phone, but it will cost you $40 or 5,200 Points to do so.)
To find a seat, enter your destination in the website’s search bar and tick ‘Use Velocity Points’ prior to hitting next. Select your dates and proceed through to the list of available flights and departure times.
You’ll see reward seat pricing and availability as follows:
Based on the above, a one-way business class reward seat between Gold Coast and Sydney would set you back 23,000 Velocity Points, or 15,500 Points plus $44.45 in cash, if you choose to go down that path.
Reward seat pricing is generally determined by distance (though can surge due to high demand), with typical pricing on popular routes is as follows:
- Brisbane to Sydney - 23,200 Velocity Points
- Sydney to Melbourne - 22,800 Velocity Points
- Melbourne to Perth - 44,400 Velocity Points
- Perth to Adelaide - 50,600 Velocity Points
It’s worth noting reward seats do not earn Velocity Points or Status Credits. If you’re looking to jump up the Velocity loyalty ladder to Silver, Gold and Platinum, you’ll need to purchase a normal fare.
How to upgrade to Virgin Australia 737 business class
Upgrades are available on all Virgin Australia Boeing 737 flights fitted with business class, which makes up the majority of aircraft within the fleet.
In order to request a Virgin Australia business upgrade, you’ll need to have purchased an eligible fare: a ‘Choice’ or ‘Flex’ economy. Cheaper ‘Lite’ fares cannot be upgraded.
Then, it’s a matter of choosing one of three ways to upgrade your seat:
- using Velocity Points, with the number required based on distance flown
- making an UpgradeMe bid on unsold business class seats
- using Velocity UpgradeMe Platinum credits. Note: only Flex fares are eligible for this option.
Full details on how to upgrade to business class can be found here.
Virgin Australia Boeing 737 business class FAQ
Is Virgin Australia business class worth it?
This is entirely up to you. But if the likes of complimentary food and drink, additional checked luggage allowance, inflight WiFi and access to Virgin Australia lounges are your yardstick for value, then yes, it’s worth it.
Does Virgin Australia release unsold seats last-minute?
Yes, in Virgin Australia’s equivalent of the Qantas ‘T-80’ rule, the airline opens up unsold seats in preferred zones which had previously been set aside for frequent flyers. That includes both business class and Economy X extra-legroom seats.