October 6, 2008
Virgin America Elevate Points Redemption Goes Live
SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 6, 2008 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Virgin America, the California-based airline on a mission to make flying good again, today announced that Elevate loyalty program members can now begin redeeming Elevate points for award travel. Elevate is a first-of-its-kind loyalty program that offers guests the ability to redeem points at the point of booking, online or via the call center, with no black-out dates. This means Elevate members can redeem points for any unsold seat -- on any Virgin America flight, at any time.
"Our goal is to reinvent every aspect of the domestic air travel experience for the better, so we're proud to deliver a loyalty program unlike anything in the U.S. industry. Elevate offers Web-based redemption with dynamic pricing and no black-out dates, so guests don't have to jump through hoops to find or book the flights they've earned," said Virgin America President and CEO David Cush. "As the first U.S. airline to let travelers start earning points from our very first day of flying, we're thrilled to begin offering real rewards to our loyal guests."
Elevate members earn five points for every $1 spent on published base fares, and effective today can book a free flight with as few as four paid roundtrips. Through www.virginamerica.com, Elevate members now will be able to access all the features needed to manage their travel online, including using points like dollars to book flights online, viewing points and credits, and tracking past and future flights.
"We wanted to create a next generation loyalty program with a Web-based, user-friendly interface that delivers actual rewards fast. Travelers shouldn't have to try and rack up unachievable mile totals, and then when they do, struggle to find an open flight. Our dynamic pricing allows guests to book any unsold seat, making black-out dates a thing of the past," Cush added.
The Elevate program offers some other industry-leading features:
-- Simple "points per dollar" system, instead of typical miles or segments flown -- Visible "price in points" for booking flights online -- Points can be used like dollars to book flights online* -- No black-out dates -- guests can redeem points for any available seat on any flight -- Price in points varies based on class of service and seat availability -- Ability to use points to book one-way travel and book any class of travel -- 18-month rolling expiration for points from date of purchase -- Customized member profile to help speed bookings -- go from flight to confirmation in just a few clicks -- Points earned through September 2008 will not expire until 2010
Elevate members can begin redeeming rewards today on Virgin America's Web site (www.virginamerica.com) and at 1.877.FLY.VIRGIN (1.877.359.8474).
The airline's Elevate frequent flier program has grown to over 500,000 members since its launch in July of 2007, with 1,300 new members joining every day. Members receive exclusive offers to the unique events and opportunities only the world-class Virgin brand could provide. Some of the extraordinary rewards Elevate has offered include opportunities to fly on a JFK to LAX in-flight fashion show with the Victoria's Secret supermodels, tickets to the star-studded in-flight premiere of HBO's Entourage, and the chance to compete to earn a seat on a Virgin Galactic sub-orbital space flight (www.virginamerica.com/raceforspace).
Loyalty Lab, Inc., a San Francisco-based loyalty technology provider, has helped power the airline's innovative, redemption program. With Loyalty Lab's Web-based, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) technology, Virgin America is able to deliver a robust, seamless experience for guests. Virgin America tapped Loyalty Lab based on its unique ability to implement the dynamic redemption pricing that distinguishes Elevate from other frequent flier programs.
Metzner Schneider Associates, a leading customer engagement and marketing consultancy, developed the innovative customer acquisition, retention and loyalty strategy that defines Elevate today. Rokkan, a New York-based web services company, designed the Elevate user experience. The simple Web flow allows guests to toggle between points and credit card payment options.
Virgin America currently flies to seven cities with daily flights from: SFO to LAX, SFO to JFK, SFO to SAN, SFO to IAD, SFO to LAS, SFO to SEA, LAX to JFK, LAX to IAD, LAX to SEA, and non-stop JFK to LAS.
*Coming in 2009: Members also will be able to combine points and dollars to redeem online. Members will be able to tailor the in-flight experience by loading a favorite play-list or videogame avatar.
EDITORS NOTE: Virgin America is a U.S. controlled and operated airline and an entirely separate company from Virgin Atlantic. Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group is a minority share investor in Virgin America.
About Virgin America: Launched in August 2007, Virgin America is a California-based airline that offers guests attractive fares and a host of innovative features aimed at reinventing air travel. Virgin America's base of operations is San Francisco International Airport's ultra-modern and convenient International Terminal. The airline's new Airbus A320-family aircraft offer interactive in-flight entertainment systems and power outlets for electronic gear. In September 2008, Virgin America was rated the "Best Business Class" among U.S. carriers in Conde Nast Traveler's 2008 Business Travel Poll. In July 2008, Virgin America was named "Best Domestic Airline" in Travel + Leisure World's Best Awards. In Zagat's 2007 Global Airlines Survey, the airline was ranked #1 among U.S. carriers for quality in First/Business Class. To learn more: www.virginamerica.com
The Virgin America logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=2371
About Loyalty Lab, Inc.: Loyalty Lab, Inc. is the fast-growing, enabler of loyalty solutions in America. Founded in 2003, San Francisco-based Loyalty Lab provides consumer brand marketers with complete solutions for designing, developing, implementing and managing programs explicitly geared towards the enhancement of customer value. Loyalty Lab's Software-as-a Service (SaaS) model uniquely positions the company to deliver high-value business solutions with greater flexibility and lower investment in time and capital. For more information about Loyalty Lab, visit: www.loyaltylab.com or contact David Rosen (415) 659-8270 x 802 / [email protected]
This news release was distributed by GlobeNewswire, www.globenewswire.com
CONTACT: Virgin America Media Contact: Abby Lunardini (650) 533-7576 [email protected]