Earlier in the week I reported how Delta SkyMiles didn’t have access to Virgin Australia award space. This seemed to be an issue regardless of whether you tried to book online or by phone. That was pretty unfortunate, given that Virgin Australia is the airline which releases the most premium cabin saver level award space between the US and Australia, making it one of the best uses of SkyMiles.
The good news is that this was apparently due to an IT glitch, and Virgin Australia awards using SkyMiles were supposed to return this weekend.
And they have indeed — Virgin Australia awards are now once again bookable on delta.com.
Awards can be booked on delta.com regardless of whether you’re looking for a longhaul redemption, or just looking for a redemption within Australia/New Zealand.
As a reminder, Delta SkyMiles charges 80,000 miles for a one-way business class award on Virgin Australia between the US and Australia. Award space is excellent, even in peak season, when it’s otherwise almost impossible to find a saver level award seat to Australia.
Also keep in mind that Virgin Australia is in the process of installing a new reverse herringbone business class seat, which should be available on US routes by next year. That will be a substantial improvement, given that their 777 business class is presently in a 2-3-2 configuration. The new configuration will feature reverse herringbone seats in a 1-2-1 configuration, meaning every business class seat will have direct aisle access.
It’s also worth pointing out that Virgin America Elevate recently substantially improved their value proposition for redemptions on Virgin Australia, as they eliminated fuel surcharges on those redemptions. So Elevate is now also a great option for awards on Virgin Australia. Elevate is presently offering an 80% bonus on purchased points, which can be a great value for this award.