Velocity Frequent Flyer is the loyalty program by Virgin Australia with close to 9 million users around Australia. Velocity comes in second place with Qantas Frequent Flyer being the most popular loyalty program in Australia. Which is normal when you consider Qantas is a much larger airline and is part of the One World Alliance, while Virgin Australia isn’t part of an alliance but instead has a range of unique partnerships with other airlines.
Earning Velocity points in Australia is pretty easy, you can get them through a range of credit cards, shopping portals… heck you even get Velocity points for servicing your car.
Velocity Frequent Flyer Points are not to be confused with Velocity Status Credits. The first one (Velocity points) is what you need to upgrade your flight or book award seats while the second type is what you need to build your frequent flyer status for lounge access, preferred seating and better upgrade possibilities.
Joining Velocity Frequent Flyer
Unlike Qantas Frequent Flyer, Velocity is free to join. You can do so in a few minutes via this link.
Earning Velocity Frequent Flyer Points
While most people think the only way to earn frequent flyer points is by flying, that’s just not the case. In fact, the fasted and easiest way to earn points is not by flying so keep on reading!
Earn points From Flying
Velocity members will earn 5 points per $ spent on domestic fares, this means the more you spend the more you earn.
On international flights, however, points are based on the actual miles flown which is then multiplied by the fare class bonus. Typically, premium tickets will get 100%+ of the points while discount economy might get less than 100% of the points for the miles flown.
On top of that, Silver members get a 50% boost to their points, Gold Status receives a 75% boost, and Platinum Status holders get a 100% boost on all points earned from flying.
To calculate the actual air miles, use this handy website.
Example: Melbourne to Hong Kong
Based on our calculations the distance is 4600 air miles. Multiply this by the points earned in the class of travel and then add any status bonus required.
For this example, business class would earn 9200 points on a one way trip while economy Gateway and Elevate would only earn 2300 Velocity Points. That’s before any status bonuses are applied.
Earning Velocity points on partner airlines.
Earning points and status credits on partner airlines varies widely so I would recommend you check the partner you are flying with to see exactly how many points you will get for your class of travel.
Earn points from credit cards
This is by far the easiest, most effective and fastest way to grow your Velocity points balance. The key here is to make sure you pay all your expenses on a card that will earn you the most points and pay off the cards each month to prevent any interest charges.
When choosing a card, make sure you go for one that comes with a big bonus offer for signing up. Anything from 50,000 to 100,000 bonus points is worth considering. Most people will cycle through a few offers a year to maximise deals.
Earn points from shopping
Velocity has an online portal called Velocity eStore where you can find hundreds of shopping partners. By using the links in the eStore, you will earn bonus points on any times bought through the partner stores.
You will find that all the big brands you know are there: Apple, The Iconic, David Jones, Groupon, Catch etc. It’s also worth checking the “Offers” section of the site as this is where you can see if there are any bonus points for certain stores. This can add up really fast, especially when you’re looking to purchase a big ticket item such as an appliance.
Earn points at the supermarket
Of course, you already know to use a high velocity earning card to shop for groceries but swiping you Flybuys card will allow you to double dip on points. While 2,000 Flybuys points are only worth 870 Velocity points, keep in mind that this adds up over time. You can further maximise your Flybuys by taking advantage of bonus offers.
These are usually targeted to users that haven’t shopped in a while. Many points hackers will, for this reason, open multiple Flybuys cards and use them in rotation. This way you can trick the Coles retention system in offering you great offers which are designed to get you to shop at their supermarket again. If that’s to much work, just rotate between Coles and Woolworths and trigger retention offers from both!
When shopping online, make sure you use one of these Coles promo codes to get a further discount on your grocery bill!
Earn points from car rentals
Velocity Frequent Flyer partners with Europcar, Hertz and Thrifty to offer bonus points on all your car rentals. The earn rates are:
Europcar Australia/NZ Velocity bonus
- In AU & NZ: Red 4 points per $1, Silver 4.5 points per $1, Gold 5.25 points per $1 and Platinum 6 point per $1 spent.
- Europcar International Velocity bonus flat rate: Red 800 points, Silver 1,200 points, Gold 1,400 points, Platinum 1,600 points.
Hertz Australia/NZ Velocity bonus
- When hiring a car in Australia and New Zealand, Red members will earn 3 points per $; Silver members will receive an additional 50% points; Gold members will receive an additional 75% points, and Platinum members will receive an additional 100% points.
- Hertz International Velocity bonus flat rate: Red 800 points, Silver 1,200 points, Gold 1,400 points, Platinum 1,600 points.
Thrifty Velocity bonus
- When hiring a car with Thrifty, Red members will earn 3 points per $1 spent; Silver members will receive an additional 50% points; Gold members will receive an extra 75% points, and Platinum members will earn an additional 100% points.
Earn points from hotels
There are a few ways to earn Velocity points through hotel booking portals, but one of the best ones is Agoda Points Max. This program allows you to earn points and miles for a range of loyalty programs including Velocity Frequent Flyer. The amount of points depends on how much you’re spending so make sure you do the maths on the total cost to see if it’s worth it.
Another booking portal is Flybuys Travel where you earn bonus Flybuys points, which you can then transfer to Velocity.
The same is the case when you book direct with chains such as Hilton, IHG, Choice Hotel, Accor, Shangri-La and Marriott. With loyalty programs its a simple case of transferring your reward points to Velocity at the following rates:
- Hilton Honors: 10,000 Honors Points = 1,500 Velocity Points
- Choice Privileges: 20,000 Choice Privileges Points = 3,000 Velocity Points
- IHG Rewards Club: 10,000 IHG Rewards Club Points = 2,000 Velocity Points
- Accor ALL: 1 Accor ALL point = 1 Velocity Point
- Marriott Bonvoy: 60,000 Marriott points = 25,000 Velocity frequent flyer points (20,000 + 5,000 bonus)
- Shangri-La Golden Circle: 1 Golden Circle Award Point = 1 Velocity Point
Apart from these chains, there is also a range of direct Velocity hotel partners which offer bonus points on bookings. You simply show your Velocity card at check-in to get the extra bonus. These hotels are:
- Crown hotels: 3 points per $1 spent
- Hamilton Island: 3 points per $1 spent
- TFE Hotels: 3 points per $1 spent
- Pan Pacific Hotels: 3 points per $1 spent
- Staywell Group: 3 points per $1 spent in Australia and 1000 bonus points overseas
- Langham Hotels: 3 points per $1 spent in Australia and 1000 bonus points overseas
- Next Hotels & resorts: 3 points per $1 spent in Australia and 1000 bonus points overseas
- Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts: 3 points per $1 spent in Australia and 1000 bonus points overseas
- Voyages Ayers Rock Resort: 3 points per $1 spent
- Virgin Limited Edition: Earn from a range of 750 Velocity Points up to 35,000 Velocity Points
- View Hotels: 3 points per $1 spent
- Intercontinental Hotels Group: Earn 3 Velocity Points per $1 spent in Australia or 600 Velocity Points per stay on selected hotels outside Australia
Earn Velocity points with Sendle
Sendle is an online parcel/post delivery platform, hugely popular with small businesses. Not only are their prices more competitive compared to Australia Post, but they also offer Velocity points! With Sendle, you will earn 1 Velocity points per dollar spent.
Earn Points with Velocity Global Wallet
The Global Wallet is aimed at those looking to get an international currency card, but this is a terrible idea. The conversion rate will see you lose at least 5% of your money’s value. Instead, use it as a debit card (if you must use a debit card). It’s free, and it earns 1 Velocity point per $3 spent in Australia.
If you need a debit card for overseas spend we recommend Up, ING Direct, Citi or Macquarie debit cards that come with their standard bank account, all these do not charge any currency conversion fees.
Earn points with Velocity Daily
Velocity Daily is a promotion by Visa, and while it’s only available in NSW at the moment, once your Visa card is linked to your Velocity account, you can automatically earn bonus points at selected local businesses. We have a full guide on the program here.
Earn points with Virgin Wines
Virgin Wines is a similar concept as the Qantas Epiqure store (though maybe not as good) where you can earn bonus Velocity points on your wine purchases. You will earn 3 points per $1 spent, but that’s in addition to potential bonuses offered on certain wines.
Redeeming Velocity Points
The smartest ways to redeem your points is on reward seat redemptions in business class. Yes, you can redeem your points for toasters and the like, but that’s not something we will waste our time on!
The second best option is to use points for an upgrade, however, when it comes to upgrades the cost might be close to the same price of an outright redemption ticket unless you’re on an expensive flexible economy ticket.
Of course, since Virgin Australia partners with a wide range of Airlines, you can also use your points to book redemption tickets on these partner carriers (not upgrades).
How to redeem Velocity points for Virgin Australia flights?
Redeeming your Velocity Frequent Flyer points for flights is very easy; however there are a few things you will need to pay attention to (especially if you are new to this whole points thing). You see, there are 2 types of awards seats; one is called “Any Seat” the other type is called either “Economy or Business Reward”. The second type is the one you want to go for since it’s the actual cost of a reward seat.
The “Any Seat” award is essentially the dollar amount of the flight in points at the value Velocity has assigned to it (hint: it’s terrible value). While these award types can be redeemed as long as there are seats for sale, they are much more expensive compared to either an “Economy Reward” or a “Business Reward”.
You have to remember that reward seats are numbered on each flight, meaning there are only a few available on release. When seats go unsold, Velocity will release more Reward seats closer to the departure date.
To clarify the difference further, let’s look at an example:
Our search is for a flight from Perth to Sydney, as you can see in the screenshot we have selected “Points + Pay” when searching for flights, this will return us with Reward seats (if they are available).
Step 1: log in to your Velocity account
Step 2: Click book a flight
Step 3: Select “Use Points + Pay” before searching
In the search results, we now have 3 options: Economy Reward, Business Reward or Any Seat. As you can see the “Any Seat” reward is even more expensive than business class (keeping in mind that the 55,100 points are only for an economy ticket as well).
When reward seats aren’t available, it will just show “Business/Economy Reward Sold Out”.
Why are there 2 points prices on Rewards?
Have you ever heard someone tell you they got a “FREE” business class ticket? Here’s the thing…they are lying. There’s no such thing as a free lunch, and same goes for points redemptions. There is always a small amount of taxes to be paid on your redemption ticket.
In Virgin Australia’s case, they allow you to pay those taxes with either points or cash. I always opt for the cash since it’s better value. You can’t get the better price until the final step in your booking. As you can see in the screenshot, you will be presented with a slider, which allows you to pay the taxes in either cash or points or a mix of both.
For this example, the total cost for a one-way flight from Perth to Sydney comes to 35,500 points + $26 in taxes.
Can I earn points and status on a Velocity Reward booking?
Simple answer: no.
Reward seats never let you earn points, at least that’s the theory. There are a few airlines out there who do credit points from reward flights unintentionally (I’m not going to name them), so it’s always a good idea to add your frequent flyer number anyway.
Using Velocity Points on partner airlines
A great use of Velocity points is no doubt partner redemptions in business or first class.
For the majority of partners, these tickets need to be booked by calling Velocity Frequent Flyer:
Australia: 13 18 75
New Zealand: 0800 230 875
Overseas: +61 2 8667 5924
How to calculate Velocity partner redemptions?
An easy way to figure out how many points you will need for your redemption is by using the award chart which shows the points required by miles (distance).
Step 1: Calculate air miles
A great tool to calculate accurate air mile distance between airports is http://www.webflyer.com/travel/mileage_calculator/, enter your departure and destination airport to get the amount of air miles.
Step 2: Check award chart
You can then refer to this chart https://www.velocityfrequentflyer.com/content/Redeem/Airlines/PointsTables/ to figure out the exact cost.
There are a few different tables for different partners so make sure you check carefully. In addition, there’s also a carrier charge which ranges from $3.5 to $400 depending on the class of travel and the airline. This in addition to any taxes that might be applied.
Transferring Velocity to Singapore Airlines Kris Flyer
KrisFlyer is still one of the best rewards programs out there with excellent pricing, availability and low taxes.
It’s possible to transfer your Velocity points to KrisFlyer (instantly), but there is a conversion rate difference. For every 1.55 Velocity points you will get 1 KrisFlyer mile.
So to work out how many points you will get, you can use the slider in your account or multiply 0.6452 by the number of points you want to transfer.
While it’s possible to book Singapore Airlines Saver awards online with Velocity, the amount of seats shown on the Velocity website differs highly with those available for KrisFlyer members. It’s always worth checking on both sites for availability to you can act accordingly.
How to transfer Velocity to KrisFlyer?
Transferring is pretty straight forward. Look for the Link & Transfer tab on the velocity website when you are logged in. Then click “Airline Points Transfer”
You will then need to link your accounts, once this step is complete, you will be able to transfer miles instantly.
Can I book Singapore Airlines first class with Velocity points?
Yes! It’s now possible to book Singapore Airlines first class with your Velocity points. However, you can only do this over the phone by calling:
Australia: 13 18 75
New Zealand: 0800 230 875
Overseas: +61 2 8667 5924
It’s also worth noting that Singapore Airlines blocks first class Suites from partners so you will only be able to book on the Singapore Airlines 777-300er first class cabin (which is still excellent). If it’s suites you are after, consider transferring your Velocity points to KrisFlyer for an incredible experience (check out my reviews here).
For Australian travellers, Velocity makes a lot of sense. It’s easy to earn points from a range of activities, and there are plenty of interesting partners to redeem your points on. Even domestically, Virgin Australia leads the way when it comes to business class, especially when you fly the A330 “the business”. By far the easiest way to get started with Velocity points is by getting one of these Velocity credit card deals.