One of the best uses of Virgin Australia Velocity Points is flying business or first class with Singapore Airlines: a top-rated airline with an excellent international network and convenient flight options for Australians travelling to Europe, Asia and elsewhere.
Singapore Airlines’ business and first class products are among the best in the world. Passengers not only enjoy comfortable and spacious seats (or first class “suites”), but the airline is also renowned for its excellent dining and customer service.
Singapore Airline’s business class
Singapore Airlines’ new A380 first class ‘suites’
Singapore Airlines and Virgin Australia are commercial partners and this enables Velocity Frequent Flyers to access Singapore Airlines award seats in two ways:
- by booking the seats through Virgin Australia, or
- by converting their Velocity points into Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles and booking directly with the airline itself.
There used to be a big difference in both the points cost of award seats and the taxes and fees involved depending on which of these two methods you chose. However, Singapore Airlines made a number of changes last year that resulted in the taxes and fees now being almost the same across the two booking methods.
That means the two key factors for deciding which method to use are the number of points required and seat availability.
Here’s how to work out which option is the best for you and to book your seat.
Step 1: Search for seats with both airlines
Sometimes, Singapore Airlines restricts partner access to award seats, so you should always check availability with the airlines separately to work out your flight options.
You’ll need a KrisFlyer account to search on Singapore Airlines’ site. It’s free and easy to set up an account online and you’ll have instant access to the flight search engine.
If you can only see the seat you want through the Singapore Airlines website, it may still be bookable over the phone with Virgin Australia.
For example, first class seats may not appear in search results on the Velocity website but Virgin Australia call centre staff may be able to find and book them.
There’s no way to know if Virgin Australia has access to a seat except to call and ask. The number is 13 18 75.
If the seat you want is available through both airlines, compare the points required to work out the best deal.
Step 2: Compare the points required
When doing the comparison, remember that you convert Velocity Points into KrisFlyer miles at a rate of 1.35:1 – meaning 1,350 Velocity points converts to 1,000 KrisFlyer miles.
There is often a significant difference in the points you need between the two methods.
For example, Melbourne to Singapore in business class requires 65,000 Velocity Points through Virgin Australia or 58,000 KrisFlyer miles with Singapore Airlines (which is 78,300 Velocity points pre-conversion.) That means you’d save 13,300 points by booking with Virgin Australia.
Step 3: Book your seat!
If you decide to book through Singapore Airlines, it’s free and easy to convert your points from Velocity to KrisFlyer. Simply log into your account on the Velocity Frequent Flyer website, make sure the names and birth dates of both the Velocity and KrisFlyer accounts match, and transfer the points.
The transfer should happen very quickly (only a few minutes, in my experience).
As always, plan well ahead, as award seats can be snapped up quickly, especially on the most popular routes during peak travel periods.
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