There's a Chase 30% Transfer Bonus to Virgin Atlantic Flying Club. This could be lucrative for travelers looking to reserve award flights on ANA to or from Japan, although note that there's very sparse availability for ANA Business Class from SFO and LAX (more from ORD), practically no availability from JFK, and virtually no availability (at time of writing) for ANA First Class, except from ORD.
Here are the details:
- Log into your Chase Ultimate Rewards account and navigate to the Transfer Points area to view the 30% transfer bonus to Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- Transfer points with the 30% bonus until June 15, 2022.
- Minimum transfer is 1000 Membership Rewards points
- Bonus Flying Club miles are awarded at the time of the transfer
- Transfers are irreversible: Chase Ultimate Rewards points transferred to Flying Club cannot be transferred back to Ultimate Rewards points
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Awards on ANA
ANA The Suite First Class is one of our favorite ways to fly to Japan (the other is JAL First Class). The new ANA “The Suite” First Class is on certain 777-300ER aircraft. Even if you don't manage to secure first class, the new ANA “The Room” Business Class also looks very comfortable. To double check if your flight is scheduled to have ANA's new or old first class and business class, do a dummy booking on ANA's own Web site. Just keep in mind that there are aircraft swaps, so nothing is 100% guaranteed.
With Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, ANA Business Class from SFO or LAX to Japan is just 45,000 miles (equivalent to 35,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points with the 30% transfer bonus) compared to 88,000 United miles. ANA First Class is just 55,000 miles (43,000 Chase points), vs. 120,000 United miles. Previously, ANA required roundtrip awards to be booked, but now one way awards are permitted. Note you must call Virgin Atlantic at 800-365-9500 to book ANA awards.
When Will Japan Reopen?
As we wrote in Why Japan Hasn’t Reopened to International Visitors, we only expect Japan to fully reopen after the late July 2022 general election, so for our clients, we're recommending October-November travel (autumn is a far nicer time to visit Japan than late summer, which is hot and humid) or waiting for Spring 2023 (the time to plan this is now, given that cherry blossom season is peak travel time). Expect booster shots, in addition to full vaccination, to be mandatory for all visitors.
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