If you follow TVG on Instagram, which I suggest you do, you might have seen a recent post about me booking Singapore Airlines First Class Suites for a trip in April. I’ve been discussing using points for this trip for sometime, and with one of my good friends relocating to Singapore at the end of this month, and turning 30 in April, I thought I’d make the most of the opportunity. Here’s a quick breakdown of how I used 150k Velocity points to book Singapore First Class Suites.
Last year we wrote an article about the American Express Velocity Platinum card with a 100k sign on bonus. Once successful applicants had spent $1000, within the first three months of having the card, they were issued 100,000 points to add to their Velocity Frequent Flyer program, or keep within the American Express rewards system, which can be used across multiple airlines, or sold back to American Express for roughly $1000 per 100,000 points.
If you’re spending lots of money every month, and not making the most of a credit card with rewards, you’re a silly duffer. Take my friend Pete for example. Earns a great income, spends a great income, but does so on his debit card. Modern internet banking then rubs your spending in your face, telling you exactly where, when and how much you spent, across various categories. Say you spend $30,000 in the calendar year, at 2 points to every dollar, you’re a third of the way to the very trip I’ve just booked. And as you’re about to find out, you can do amazing things with far less points than you may have thought.
One of the major reasons I chose to focus my attention to the Virgin Velocity, rather than Qantas, was because of their partnership with Singapore Airlines. Members of both programs can link their accounts and transfer points directly with 1.5 Virgin points equalling 1 KrisFlyer mile. What makes the relationship between the two airlines even better, is the points transfer is instant. Transfer the points, log out of KrisFlyer and then log back in, and bang, there they are, no more than a minute after transferring them from Velocity – brilliant.
I started my process within KrisFlyer with a ‘Redeem’ Miles search for First Class/Suites from Sydney to Singapore. Fortunately I’m able to be very flexible with my dates which is extremely valuable given that Singapore only release two Saver fares in First Suites on each flight. After locating an outbound and inbound flight with availability, I then did the maths on how many points were required to make the booking. Now I did have roughly 18,500 miles in my Kris Flyer account, which isn’t a lot, but it did allow me to transfer roughly 25,000 Velocity points less than I would have needed to make the booking.
Needing just over 110,000 KrisFlyer Miles I settled on 165,000 Velocity points, which I’d amassed from last years promotion plus some additional flying and spending. I logged in, made the transfer, then went straight back to my Kris Flyer account to proceed with the booking, which came out at 127,500 miles plus $562.02 AUD in taxes and surcharges.
Interestingly these costs don’t decrease or disappear when you select a Standard or Full Award booking, as the website states, ‘Taxes, fuel surcharges and fees are applicable in addition to the required redemption mileage and paid separately by the passenger in the applicable currency.’ I think this fact alone makes the Saver fare even more of a steal!
I must admit I was surprised at the amount of KrisFlyer miles needed to redeem these flights, which makes me even more enthusiastic about the whole experience. Even if I hadn’t had a handful of Singapore KrisFlyer Miles, my total expenditure from Velocity would have been 172,125 points. Considering the ticketed price of the flight costs $5628.02 return, I’d say the $562.02 in taxes I outlaid (10% of the ticket price) is pretty reasonable for 16 hours in the one of the world’s finest First Class products.