Good morning everyone. A few days ago, the $149 annual fee posted to my Virgin America Premium Credit Card. I called the number on the back of the credit card to see if there were any retention offers available, but sadly, the rep had no offers available for me. Instead of closing the credit card, the rep suggested that I downgrade to the Virgin America Visa Signature Credit Card that had a $49 annual fee.
Most of the card benefits are the same for both cards, including the Virgin America $150 off companion discount code, free checked bag, and 20% off in-flight purchases. The only difference between the credit cards is the Visa Signature credit card does not earn status points (not a big deal since I am Virgin America Gold and Alaska Airlines MVP Gold), I will get charged a fee for changing or cancelling my ticket (I never used this feature when I had my Virgin America Premium Credit Card) and I will be charged foreign transaction fees (I will never use this credit card internationally).
The only reason I kept the credit card is for the Virgin America $150 off companion discount code and my curiosity surrounding what will happen to this credit card when the Alaska Airlines / Virgin America merger is complete. If my memory is correct, the Virgin America $150 off companion discount code used to only apply to the Virgin America Premium Credit Card, but sometime in the last year, that benefit was added to the Virgin America Visa Signature Credit Card.
Good morning everyone, happy Sunday! I wanted to quickly thank everyone who braved the 100+ degree weather in Sacramento to attend my Sacramento Travel Hackers Meetup at In-N-Out yesterday. It was great talking to you about miles and points. I look forward to returning when the weather cools down a little bit. A few weeks ago, I needed to purchase flights from San Francisco (SFO) to Las Vegas (LAS) on Virgin America. I needed to go to Las Vegas for a specific weekend and I bought tickets somewhat last minute, so flights were expensive. Here was the price for 2 round trip tickets on Virgin America. I found it odd that if I purchased the flights from Virgin America or through Google, the price was $729 total, but if I bought the same flights through Alaska Airlines, the price was only $613 total. That seemed really strange to me.
Here’s all the news that caught my eye this week – let me know if you learn something new!
Airlines + Miles
Starting Monday, Alaska Airlines lounges in Seattle, Portland, and Los Angeles will no longer allow Priority Pass cardholders to bring guests into the lounge. [Travel Codex]
Alaska flights to/from Seattle are moving to Terminal 2 at SFO starting next week. [Flyertalk] They also announced they will be moving both Virgin and Alaska flights to Terminal 7 at JFK later this year, joining their partners British Airways, Qantas, and Icelandair. [Travel Codex]
Gogo bought more capacity on a satellite over the Pacific Ocean, which it will relocate to provide enhanced in-flight wifi coverage for the West Coast, Alaska, Hawaii, and transpacific flights. [Runway Girl Network]
Yesterday, the news broke that you could now redeem your Alaska Airlines companion fare code for flights on Alaska Airlines and Virgin America. That is great news, especially if you have 1 or more companion fare codes and if Virgin America serves the routes you want to fly. I’ve written about the Alaska Airlines Companion Fare Code a few times:
The overlooked part of the news from yesterday is that Virgin America has their own less-than-amazing companion discount code. No one ever talks about that code, but I am going to compare the Alaska Airlines companion fare code to the Virgin America companion discount code and show you which code is better.
First things first, if you have the Bank of America Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Credit Card (personal or business version), you will get the companion fare codes. To locate those codes, log into your Alaska Airlines account and click Valid under Discount and Companion Fare Codes. You will see all the companion fare codes listed, their expiration date (travel must be booked by that date) and the terms and conditions of the companion fare code.
Good evening everyone. I received a targeted offer from Virgin America in the form of a postcard that offers me 5,000 Virgin America Elevate miles for creating a new Virgin America account. This is strange because I already have a Virgin America account, I status matched to Virgin America Elevate Gold elite status, and I was recently approved for the Comenity Virgin America Premium Visa Signature Credit Card. Apparently, Virgin America still does not think I have a Virgin America account. The small print on the front of the postcard says that this offer is only available for those living at the address printed on the postcard, but you are welcome to create a new Virgin America account and see if you get the 5,000 bonus Virgin America Elevate miles.