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Virgin Atlantic has a fantastic new calendar search tool: Reward Seat Checker

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Virgin Atlantic Reward Seat Checker

Virgin Atlantic released a new search tool called “Reward Seat Checker” that makes searching Delta and Virgin Atlantic flights very easy via a calendar mode. Let’s take a look at this tool.

You can find the new search tool here

Virgin Atlantic Rewards Seat Checker

Populating the calendar

Here’s a look at a Virgin Atlantic search between London Heathrow and Atlanta. Look at all that award space, but don’t forget Virgin has a ton of fees. What would be great is if we could look for Delta flights in a more efficient way.

The limitations of the search

You’ll see that it limits your search to Delta and Virgin Atlantic to/from:

  • London Heathrow
  • London Gatwick
  • Edinburgh

You can book Delta with multiple airlines – How do they compare?

Virgin Pricing

Delta Pricing

Air France/KLM FlyingBlue pricing
Aeromexico Pricing Using this to find other Delta routings

We could do a similar thing domestically to redeem Virgin Miles, let’s look at Phoenix to MSP. I specifically selected this route since it can often have an A350 on it with lie flat seats. Note, it doesn’t always price out cheaper. Delta actually prices this route cheaper than VS in basic economy, but programs often run transfer bonuses to Virgin like Capital One and Cit are currently doing ( March 2023 ) at a 30% bonus. That would mean just 9k miles to fly that route in economy booking with Virgin Atlantic vs Delta. I didn’t pull Aeromexico and FlyingBlue, but you get the picture.

 

How to find airline routes…

I use a site called Flight Connections which allows you to search via Airline, Plane, etc.  I have a paid subscription which allows for more stipulations, but they have free search as well. This shows where delta flies A350s around the world which feature their best Delta One suite with a closing door. The route between Santiago and Atlanta that I highlighted up above would feature an A350 according to this: you always want to verify since equipment changes and this is calculating for the next 12 months ( It may only operate a portion of that period ).

I’ve never flown that suite, but have flown Delta One on the 767-400 which you can read about here

Overall

This should make searching much easier, but who knows, there is always the argument to be made that the easier award space is to find, the less of if you’ll see since people will be able to book it with greater ease. Personally, I think this is a great move on Virgin Atlantic’s part.

 Affiliate link via Card Ratings

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card


4.8
4.8/5

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great starter card that earns Premium Ultimate Rewards that can be transferred into over a dozen partners many of which are US based. 

Welcome Offer

60k Points after $4k spend in 3 months

Annual Fee

$95

Points Earned

Transferrable Chase Ultimate Rewards

If you carry this card alongside Chase’s cashback cards like the Chase Freedom Flex℠and Chase Freedom Unlimited® or the business versions: Ink Business Cash , Ink Business Unlimited you can combine the points into Preferred account and transfer into hotel and airline partners

Annual fee is quite low at $95 a year + you get a 10% anniversary bonus on points + $50 hotel credit in Chase travel.

  • 3x on dining
    •  including eligible delivery services for takeout
  • 3x on select streaming services
  • 3x on online grocery purchases
    • (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs)
  • 5x on all travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards – Chase Travel Portal
  • $50 Annual Credit on hotel stays purchased via Ultimate Rewards/Chase Travel
    • The begins immediately for new cardmembers and after your account anniversary for existing cardmembers
  • 10% Anniversary Bonus
    • Every year you keep the card, your total spend will yield a 10% points bonus. If you spend $10k in a year, you’ll get 1k bonus points
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® continues to redeem at 1.25c in the Chase Travel Portal and the slew of other benefits remain in tact including primary rental car insurance, purchase protections, etc.
  • Points are transferrable to 13 Ultimate Rewards partners
  • Redeem in the Chase Travel center for 1.25 cents per point
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Suite of Travel and Purchase Coverage
    • Primary rental car coverage is my favorite

We keep an up to date spreadsheet that lists the best ever offers: You can find that spreadsheet here.

Historically 80k is a very, very good offer and hit in both 2022 and 2023. In 2021, we saw the offer hit an all time high of 100k. Who knows if that will ever come back.

Main Cast: 

Cards that earn flexible points and should be used on the bulk of your purchases.

Supporting Cast:

Cards that earn fixed points in the currency of the airline/hotel and can not be transferred at attractive rates. These cards yield benefits that make it worth keeping, but not necessarily worth putting a lot of your everyday spend on. 

2 Comments

  • Brandon March 3, 2023

    Rookie question (I guess) here….Let’s say I have 200k Skymiles available in my account, but by using all of the methodology above, I find the flight that offers the lowest cost of miles is actually through a partner, such as Virgin Atlantic or Aeromexico. How do I use my Delta points to book the same flight on those partner sites (or can’t I)?

  • Matthew March 2, 2023

    Unfortunately it’s not working for very many cities! I tried to do delta within the US from LAX to JFK and says there is an error. Only works if I choose LHR as an option.

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