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How to redeem your Velocity Points for flights to the USA

Information verified correct on December 8th, 2016

Want to fly to the US courtesy of your frequent flyer rewards? Your Velocity Points can make it a reality.

Flights from Australia to the United States generally offer greater reward value for customers who want to redeem their Velocity Frequent Flyer Points. Due to the high demand, it can also be one of the hardest flights to find availability. If you’re unable to find a Virgin Australia flight, check availability on one of its partnered airlines. The partnered airlines open up new options, offering wider availability and flexibility for redeeming flights with your Velocity Points. Use this guide to discover how you can redeem your Velocity Points for flights to the US,

Velocity frequent flyer credit cards

How can I redeem Velocity Points for flights to the USA?

Virgin Australia flies to over 40 destinations in the US from all major Australian cities. The most valuable flight is from Brisbane direct to Los Angeles, which takes just over 13 hours and requires 63,800 Velocity Points for an economy seat.

If you can’t find a Virgin Australia flight to the US, you may have better luck with one of Virgin Australia’s many airline partners. You can redeem your Velocity Points for flights with Singapore Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines and Etihad. The cost of redeeming your points is similar between Virgin Australia and Etihad (though points costs for Etihad are due to rise in June), while Singapore and Hawaiian Airlines tend to be more expensive. You can compare how much it might cost below.

With the ability to link your Velocity program with Singapore Airlines’ KrisFlyer program, you can transfer points to and from the programs depending on which airline you wish to redeem your points with.

Velocity redemptions on Singapore Airlines flights to the USA

Fly with Singapore Airlines from Australia to destinations in the US such as Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Boston and San Francisco. If you’re looking to fly from Sydney to Los Angeles, you could take a Singapore Airlines flight with stopovers in Singapore and Tokyo. The total flight will take you over 35 hours and requires 131,863 Velocity Frequent Flyer Points.

What sets the Virgin Australia and Singapore Airlines partnership apart is the ability to transfer points between the two reward programs. The transfer rate is 1.35 Velocity Points for 1 KrisFlyer mile, or 1 Velocity Point = 0.74 KrisFlyer miles. You’ll also receive a 15% discount when you book online.

Velocity redemptions on Etihad Airways flights to the USA

You could redeem your Velocity Points for flights with Etihad from Sydney to US destinations such as Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, New York, Norfolk, Portland, Rochester and Washington. For example, in just under 35 hours and by redeeming 62,500 Velocity Points, you could fly from Sydney to New York via the Middle East with Etihad Airways.

Etihad enforces a rule that only allows you to redeem points on flights that are under 15,000 air miles in total.  A flight from Australia to Los Angeles exceeds the 15,000 mile limit and is therefore not offered for points by Etihad.

Velocity redemptions on Hawaiian Airlines flights to the USA

Flying to over 35 destinations across America, Hawaiian Airlines will fly you from Sydney to New York stopping over in Honolulu. The duration of the flight will take just over a day and cost you just 75,000 Velocity Points. You will need to call the membership contact centre to book on 13 18 75.

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What mistakes should I avoid?

To ensure you get the most out of your Velocity Points, make sure to avoid these slip-ups:

      • Fuel charge. Expect a fuel charge when redeeming Velocity Points on the KrisFlyer program.
      • Unnecessary flying time. Compare your flight durations between each of the airlines to ensure you are not redeeming your points on unnecessary flying time.
      • Stopovers. Check the airline conditions regarding stopover lengths. Some may have a restriction of 24 hours between flights.
      • Fees and charges. In most cases, the points needed to redeem a flight advertised on the website do not include the fees and charges added during the booking process.
      • Redeeming instead of earning. In the case of there not being a wide selection of flights to redeem, you may be better off earning points.

Ways to earn Velocity frequent flyer points

With the added airline and flight options, you’ll find the freedom you need to redeem your Velocity Points and fly to the United States. Compare the flight times, points required and route options before making your booking to ensure you’ve chosen the most valuable option available.

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