Your guide to Virgin Australia's new economy Space+ seating

By Chris C., August 31 2016
Your guide to Virgin Australia's new economy Space+ seating

Virgin Australia’s new economy ‘Space+’ package pairs extra legroom with perks like priority boarding and ‘preferred’ overhead lockers, plus priority check-in, noise-cancelling headsets and more on longer flights.

Space+ is available to all economy class travellers on Virgin Australia’s domestic and international flights, starting at $20 on popular business routes but rising to as high as $140 for international journeys.

Here’s what you need to know about your Space+ seating options.

Virgin Australia Space+ seats: where you’ll find them

On domestic flights, Economy Space+ seats are located at the emergency exit rows of Virgin Australia’s Boeing 737-800s, Airbus A330-200s, Embraer E190s and Fokker 100s.

They're also available in row one of the airline’s all-economy ATR-72 turboprops.

On international Boeing 777-300ER flights, you’ll find five rows of Space+ seating directly behind premium economy (as shown below) as well as at the exit rows further back:

Note that the roomy front row of economy on Virgin Australia’s Boeing 737-800s, A330-200s, E190s and F100s won’t be sold as Space+, despite the airline's confusing use of this 'row three' shot as part of its Space+ marketing:

Virgin Australia has confirmed to Australian Business Traveller that economy front row seating on its domestic jets will continue to be offered to Virgin Australia Velocity Platinum members at no charge from the time of booking, subject to availability.

Read: Virgin clarifies seat selection under new fare policies

Virgin Australia Space+ seating: what you get

On all Virgin Australia domestic flights, guests booked in a Space+ seat will enjoy priority boarding privileges and access to ‘preferred’ overhead lockers, plus at least 25% more legroom than a regular economy seat.

When taking shorter international flights such as from Australia to New Zealand and Fiji, paying for Space+ also gets you priority check-in via a dedicated counter.

Take a Space+ journey on those longer flights to Los Angeles and Abu Dhabi and you’ll get these and even more privileges, including a noise-cancelling headset to use with the inflight entertainment and a guarantee of your first meal choice from the regular economy menu.

Virgin Australia Space+ seating: what it costs

Reserving your spot in Space+ is easy – just make a regular Virgin Australia economy booking and instead of selecting a standard seat during the booking process or when managing your existing booking, just select one in the Space+ zone:

While prices can vary from flight to flight, here’s what you can expect to pay across a variety of popular Virgin Australia routes when travelling on the least-expensive fares, according to pricing searches by Australian Business Traveller:

  • Sydney-Melbourne: $20
  • Sydney-Brisbane: $20
  • Sydney-Canberra: $20
  • Brisbane-Melbourne: $20
  • Sydney-Cairns: $30
  • Brisbane-Darwin: $55
  • Sydney-Perth: $40
  • Sydney-Auckland: $20
  • Sydney-Los Angeles: $135
  • Brisbane-Los Angeles: $140

When seated in an exit row, also remember that you’ll still need to meet Virgin Australia’s usual safety requirements, including being willing and able to assist in the event of an evacuation, not requiring an extension seat belt and not flying with an infant or guide dog.

Also read: VA upgrades Boeing 777 premium economy to 'business lite'

Follow Australian Business Traveller on Twitter:  we're @AusBT

Chris C.

Chris is a a former contributor to Executive Traveller.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

25 Jul 2013

Total posts 68

I wish Platinum (even Gold) would receive free Space+ seating allocation on international long haul, instead of having the pay the $130+ fee.

Or at least something like Delta's Comfort+ system where Medallion members receive free upgrades 72 hours out, depending on availability. Come on Virgin!

27 Jan 2016

Total posts 53

Given the recent debacle with seat fee, i think it is a system limitation currently that does allow them to waive for tier. It is very much one size fits all. Even preferential pricing, given that tiered members are already getting the prioirty check in and boarding benefits anyway.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Jan 2014

Total posts 319

Can you pay as a separate transaction? Our company use a corporate travel agent so I don't control the initial transaction, once my booking is done can I then request and pay for an exit row? 

24 Apr 2012

Total posts 2476

Yes, you can use the VA website to select your seat, and when you select one in the Space+ zone you'll be prompted for payment.

07 Mar 2013

Total posts 31

Are you sure about that? As far as I know the VA still does not allow any changes, including seat selection, where the booking was made by a travel agent. I have several at the moment booked by QBT and none allow seat selection.

07 Mar 2013

Total posts 31

The VA website I meant to say

24 Apr 2012

Total posts 2476

Many bookings allow access to seat selection online – if you have issues you can always call the airline.

23 Feb 2016

Total posts 33

Are passangers that are automatically assigned to space+ seats granted these same benefits?

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

09 Aug 2016

Total posts 3

Are you kidding me VirginAustralia. Up to 12 more people with priority boarding? Have you seen the priority boarding lanes at BNE, SYD or MEL these days? Every man and his dog has a gold card! Remind me again why I continue to fly with and the additional benefits as a plat. Pretty much done hey.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

22 Apr 2013

Total posts 145

So, the Space+ seating product comes at the cost of recognising Platinum/Gold VA FF with priority seating?

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

31 Aug 2016

Total posts 1

What a joke, the priority checkin & boarding lanes are already completely overloaded.

I wonder if plat/gold will also get preferred overhead lockers - or will they all be overfilled as per usual? - moreso now that they are selling "preferred" overhead lockers.

27 Jan 2016

Total posts 53

Makes sense to priority board given that these people have to put their bags in the overhead. Provided airports manage check in queues better this would be good. Nothing worse then Prioirty lines longer then regular.

10 Aug 2015

Total posts 117

I don't understand why people want to be on the plane first. I prefer to be the last one on, after all the pushing shoving has completed. Swan on board and take up my residence for the next 65 minutes.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

13 Jan 2015

Total posts 588

Well i for one like to store my bag in the locker directly over my row...not 5 rows back

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