Virgin Australia Dumps Delta for United, Major Partnership Shake-Up

by Zoe

United and Virgin Australia announced a new partnership this afternoon that will kick off in early 2022. Beginning in April, the partnership includes codesharing on flights as well as reciprocal loyalty benefits.

In addition to the ability to redeem and earn points/miles, eligible premier MileagePlus and Velocity members will also receive the following benefits when flying on United and Virgin Australia worldwide: Priority check-in, Priority Boarding, Priority Baggage and additional baggage check allowance, Priority security, Lounge access

Both airlines point out that United has a far larger presence in Australia than Delta and a “far greater market share than Delta on routes between Australia and the United States.”  Delta and Virgin Australia paused their trans-Pacific joint venture in late 2020, with Virgin Australia no longer operating any international flights at the time.

Virgin will honor all Delta bookings:

We will honor all Delta customer bookings, and all Delta customers booked on Virgin Australia services will continue to enjoy all current benefits of the partnership. Velocity and SkyMiles Points/miles and Status Credit earn and redemption will also continue.

Virgin Australia will resume the sale of codeshare flights at virginaustralia.com, starting with United services in early 2022, followed by the airline’s other international partners.

We are grateful to have such a strong partner in United,” said Virgin Australia Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka. “They have proudly been one of Australia’s most loyal and long serving aviation partners and their market strength both to Australia and in the United States brings great value to our guests. We look forward to innovating together on behalf of our guests to ensure they have the very best travel experiences to over 90 destinations in the U.S.

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