Rocketmiles, a website that kicks back substantial miles to you for you hotel bookings (but generally doesn’t provide credit for elite status, and for some chains bookings won’t allow elite recognition, also has a limited set of properties)., has introduced a new mileage-earning partner in Virgin America and has a bonus offer to promote it.
Book by July 15 for a stay consumed by December 31 and credit to Virgin America for a 3000 mile bonus — or 5000 miles if you have Virgin America elite status.
This is a first-time booking bonus for new Rocketmiles customers, so folks that have used the site before aren’t eligible.
On the flipside though, this first-time booking bonus is stackable with the bonus for being referred by an existing Rocketmiles customer.
The normal first booking signup bonus from Rocketmiles is 1000 (when you are referred by an existing member and they get 1000 miles). I’ve arranged for folks using my referral link to get the full 2000 miles.
So non-elites could get 5000 Virgin America miles for their first booking, and elites could get 7000 — and that’s a bonus on top of the miles earned for the money spent on the hotel stay itself.
This is a bigger bonus than it may first appear, or at least it may be — because Virgin America’s points are on a somewhat different scale from legacy mileage programs. Roughly speaking I mentally multiply Virgin America points by 1.5 or 2 to come up with an equivalent.
Here’s San Francisco – London roundtrip on Virgin Atlantic, it’s 60,000 miles for business class (plus since it’s Virgin Atlantic, exorbitant fuel surcharges).
Here’s Los Angeles – Australia roundtrip on Virgin Australia, it’s 90,000 miles for business class (again plus fuel surcharges).
For a longer discussion on the value and limitations on Rocketmiles, including how lucrative bookings can be (and how it compares to PountsHound), see The Other Site that Rebates Big Miles for Your Hotel Bookings.