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The writing was on the wall for Virgin America, ever since the announcement of its takeover by Alaska and the completion of the deal last year. Only a few months back, Alaska announced that they would be terminating the Virgin America Brand in 2018, and now Virgin America has announced the dates of the closure of all its partnerships in preparation for the dissolution of the Virgin America brand.

Which Partnerships Are Affected

The Closure is complete and affects all of Virgin America’s partnerships, from airlines to car rental and hotels all partnerships will be terminated including the ability to transfer American Express Membership Rewards to the Virgin America Elevate program. Luckily the terminations are somewhat staggered over the latter half of 2017, which will mean you will have to be careful when a specific partnership ends if you have plans to use it.

Virgin Elevate Transfer Partner Terminations

Termination Timetable

Virgin America has posted an entire timetable of when and when each partnership will be terminated. While the majority will end on September 30, 2017, others will last a little longer; one will be terminated earlier. The partnerships that have different ending dates are:

  • Alaska Airlines ends December 31, 2017 (obvious)
  • Airbnb ends June 30, 2017
  • Membership Rewards transfers ends October 31, 2017
  • Points.com ends October 31, 2017

Sadly, the termination of the Membership Rewards transfers is a blow, since it was the only way to transfer points to Alaska which is not a Membership Rewards partner — even though the transfer ratio to Virgin Elevate is 2:1 which was not the best.

Overall

This move is no surprise really, ever since Alaska announced the termination of the Virgin America brand. It seems Alaska is keen to bury the Virgin America brand and move on as soon as possible. We think it simply comes down to Alaska not wanting to continue to pay Richard Branson licensing rights for the Virgin Brand. These fees were scheduled to continue until 2040; however, it seems Alaska obviously believes that if they kill off the brand, they will no longer have to pay up.

Source: The Points Guy

Virgin America Announces Termination Of All Partnerships
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Comments

  • I always found the various Virgin airline brands confusing. Why do they have America, Atlantic, Australia, etc?

  • We all knew this day was coming, just when!
    Shame as VA had some great sweetspots for redemption of flights.

  • Thank you for the update. I had expected this would happen but am glad to know the official dates. I actually am more an Alaska flyer who joined Virgin when they were giving out so many free points, then converted them to Alaska Air for even more.

  • Kind of disappointing but makes sense from Alaska’s standpoint. While this obviously has some ramifications that are not optimal for travelers, ultimately I’m glad that Alaska is emerging as a national player. The legacy carriers (and to an extent, Southwest) need the competition…

  • another one bites the dust. I expect Jet Blue to go next, to Alaska or SWA.

  • Jacqueline parsons says:

    Shame the partnerships are finally coming to an end. Emirates in 1st was my best redemption using VA.

  • Excellent!! Thank you uncle Richard!!

  • In some ways it is quite sad to see the Virgin America name disappear. I’m not sure but I thought Starwood Preferred Guest was an Amex partner and an Alaska partner, so maybe it is still possible to get Alaska points via Amex through that route. I haven’t really taken much interest in either SPG or Alaska, so could be completely wrong on that though!

  • Yeah but you can always get Alaska miles through their credit card

  • When Virgin America’s flights turn into Alaska flights, I’ll get a free checked bag as an AA gold. Goodbye Virgin.

  • I still have 51k VX points which will be 66k AS miles. I don’t have any plans to fly VX, but is there any reason not to transfer to AS now? Will the .30 transfer bonus stay in affect until the last day?

  • Can we do MR->SPG->Alaska?

  • The vx credit cards have been discontinued also. Hoping it’ll be converted to AS visa.

    Wonder amex will do a transfer bonus before termination. Probably not much incentive to do so though.

  • I wouldn’t want to pay the licensing fees either. Good move.

  • this will keep the AS lawyers busy — “it seems Alaska obviously believes that if they kill off the brand, they will no longer have to pay up.”

  • Bitter sweet this merger is. While the Alaska network is going to grow. I still wish the virgin brand would be around. For competitive pricing and great experience. I hope Alaska integrates some aspects of the Virgin brand

  • I read an article recently about one writers experience of Virgin America and it was a weird read, since everyone is so positive about Virgin America and wanting to fly them. I have never been on V America and probably never will since Alaska took them over. But from the article, I don’t think that I ever would have wanted to be on them…I do believe some of the issues would be the take over.
    The article talked about just a sign and speaker box at the gate and less knee room in cabin, for a couple of things. Plus, there were no free snacks. You could purchase snack and food from the tv screen in front of you.
    Now the writer was just on JetBlue and apparently flies them often, so there will be a difference. But are those few things what normally was on V america?

    Not surprised with all the agreements cancelling. Wonder when ticketing agreements will end and what Alaska employees will do when a VA flight is canceled. It’s probably already under Alaska’s ticket numbers already?

  • Emirates is still a partner on Alaska MP. The loss of Singapore Airlines is unfortunate, but the expanded network on Alaska’s partnership is a worthwhile trade for current VX members.

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