Virgin Australia will join Qantas in offering free flights as an incentive for Australians to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
Under the airline’s VA-X & Win promotion, there will be a major prize of one million Velocity Frequent Flyer points, “dozens of free business class flights” plus a range of other prizes.
That would allow them to fly around Australia seven times — or take a super luxury trip overseas when borders open.
The competition will launch later this year, once all Australian adults are expected to be eligible for the vaccine.
For example, Sydney to LA is 44,800 Points Business class flights can also be won.
There is also a separate contest for staff, with the airline saying 65 per cent of its flying crew and customer-facing airport workers have received one or two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine or are registered to be vaccinated. Prizes include extra days off.
A Virgin Australia Group spokesperson said the airline wants to encourage Australians to get vaccinated — but also offered a thinly-veiled attack on premieres who have closed borders amid the latest outbreaks.
“For simply rolling up your sleeve and getting a COVID-19 vaccination, you could walk away with a share in tens of thousands of dollars of Virgin Australia and Velocity Frequent Flyer prizes or be the lucky one to become a Velocity Points millionaire,” a spokesman said.
“What the latest lockdown in Melbourne and the evolving situation in Sydney has taught us, is the sooner we can all get vaccinated, the sooner we can get on with our lives, without the constant fear and uncertainty that come with lockdowns, restrictions and closed borders.
“Most importantly, the sooner all Australians are vaccinated, the sooner our most vulnerable members of society will be protected.”
Entry is not yet open, but people can register on the Virgin Australia website.
By Joe Cusmano