Virgin Voyages has announced it is launching a loyalty club. The Virgin Voyages Sailing Club will roll out in 2023. From reading a marketing email with a lot of words and not a lot of information, we have gleaned some details about sailing perks for sailors (guests) who sailed in 2021 and 2022, and who sail in 2022, and not much more. But we do love Virgin Voyages and are happy to share this news.
Virgin Voyages Deep Blue Extras
Virgin says these are only available when you book and sail in 2022. The benefits are a mix of the expected, the nice to have, and a couple of surprises.
Virgin lists this as “A VIP-style dedicated line at embarkation awaits you at the terminal.” Which is another way of saying “y’all get to use the VIP (this was called the Rockstar entrance in the old terminal) line regardless of what level of cabin you have booked.” Think of this as most similar to the Silver and Gold Castaway Club check-ins for a Disney cruise, with a separate entrance like the Platinum check-in. We like it. Virgin’s Terminal V is shiny and new and we love it.
Unlimited Premium Wifi
The base service of wifi is free for all sailors. Sailors can buy an upgraded (Premium) wifi package with higher speeds for $10/day. Unlimited premium wifi is already included with Mega Rockstar suites (the highest of the three levels of service).
An Exclusive Cocktail Event
This is brand new. We haven’t experienced it yet, but Virgin calls it “stunningly curated and extra-special.” I like cocktails and feeling extra-special. Call it a win.
Shake For Champagne
Shake for Champagne is a novelty in the Virgin Voyages app for all sailors. It is what it says. You open the app, shake your phone, and a server brings you a bottle of Moët for $95. With Deep Blue Extras, the first bottle is free. Who doesn’t like free? Champagne? We are here for it.
Rockstar Agent On Board
This is another example of bringing suite perks to all sailors. Rockstar agents are onboard concierges who make arrangements for your party and save you trips to Sailor Services. This service is included Rockstar suites. Think of these as the Disney Cruise Line crew who man the desk in the concierge lounge, but without the desk or lounge and available through the Virgin Voyages app 24/7. Mega Rockstars have Mega Rockstar Agents who are personally assigned to their cabins so this is not valuable to them.
Sounds kind of boring, but actually very nice. This includes free service of two pressed items, one dry-cleaned item, and a bag of laundry. At a price of $5 per wash and fold item, or $30 for a bag of laundry, this is great. There is no self-service laundry on the Virgin ships. Using this service will cut down on how much you have to pack for your cruise, and we recommend it.
$10 Daily Specialty Coffee Credit Per Cabin
Who doesn’t like free money? Specialty coffees are available in the Galley and the dedicated coffee bar, Grounds Club, on Deck 7. Bear in mind that many cruisers already have a Bar Tab (what Virgin calls an onboard credit for premium beverages) as either a promotion included with their booking or will purchase it before sailing. Speciality coffees can be purchased with this credit as well. Mega Rockstars have a nearly unlimited bar tab included with their fare, but the $10 coffee credit is useful for all other fare categories.
Who Gets Deep Blue Extras on Virgin Voyages?
Sea Blazers are guests who were among the first ones on Virgin Voyages. If you sailed in 2021, congratulations – you are a Sea Blazer. What does it mean to be a Sea Blazer? Along with Deep Blue Extras, you get a $125 Bar Tab Bonus for life.
Sea-Rovers are guests who have already sailed twice in 2022. You will get Deep Blue Extras on your subsequent cruises in 2022 and a $100 Bar Tab Bonus through 2024.
And finally this is every interesting. For those who are neither Blazer nor Rovers, but are members of another cruise loyalty program, Virgin match your current loyalty status and make you a Sea-Rover as well. We have many questions, like what does match my status mean exactly, but it sounds better than not matching your status. You will need to submit proof of your status before booking a cruise, or may we suggest work with one of our awesome travel agents. Here are the loyalty programs Virgin Voyages is matching.
- Azamara Circle – Explorer, Discoverer, Discover Plus, Discover Platinum
- Carnival VIFP Club – Platinum, Diamond
- Celebrity Captain’s Club – Elite, Elite Plus, Zenith
- Disney Cruise Line Castaway Club – Silver, Gold, Platinum
- Holland American Mariner Society – 3-Star, 4-Star, 5-Star
- MSC Voyagers Club – Gold, Black
- Norwegian Cruise Line Latitudes Rewards – Platinum, Sapphire, Diamond, Ambassador
- Oceania Club – Gold, Platinum, Diamond, President’s Circle
- P&O Peninsular Club – Mediterranean Tier, Caribbean Tier, Baltic Tier, Ligurian Tier
- Princess Captain’s Circle – Platinum, Elite
- Royal Caribbean Crown & Anchor – Diamond, Diamond Plus, Pinnacle Club
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club – Gold, Wings
- Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer – Gold, Platinum, Beyond
- Windstar Yacht Club – One Star, Two Star, Three Star, Four Star
Red Hot Booking Bonus Months
Hey we didn’t name it. But qualifying sailors book and pay for a Virgin Voyages cruise between August 30, 2022, and November 15, 2022, get additional perks. The cruise itself is for anytime, not just those dates. Sadly, this does not include those paid for with Future Cruise Credits. What do you get? A $200 onboard credit for the voyage. Any spend during these months and through December 31, 2022, also counts toward Virgin’s Sailing Club loyalty program (more on that in a sec).
So About That Loyalty Program?
All we know for sure are the Deep Blue Extras and the Red Hot Booking Months. Virgin is tracking your cruise spend from September to December 31, 2022 (fares and onboard purchases). In their words, “every dollar you spend from September through December 31st, 2022 on both voyage fares and while on board will be counted and tallied as tokens — which will be shared with you in 2023. As the program is unveiled in 2023, these tokens will fast-track you to the highest and most luxurious recognition possible, unlocking even more phenomenal perks in the new year.” I interpret this as “we will have a loyalty program, we haven’t finalized its details, but you’ll be earning towards it.” In the most Virgin Voyages move ever, they claim they are “crowd-sourcing” the loyalty program (or rewards club as they are also calling it). Here is the link to share your ideas for what should be included.
We are big fans of Virgin Voyages around here. Len Testa wrote up his first Virgin cruise in October 2022 and has been on 2 more since then. Our friend Billy Hirsch practically took up residence on Virgin in the last year and is hosting group cruises through TouringPlans on them in the future. If you would like to sail with Virgin Voyages, hit us up. Operators are standing by (and by that we mean watching their email).