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Virgin Australia Becomes Latest Airline Offering Free Flights to Vaccinated Passengers

Virgin Australia Becomes Latest Airline Offering Free Flights to Vaccinated Passengers

Virgin Australia will tempt passengers to get vaccinated against COVID-19 with the offer of dozens of free Business Class flights and millions of Velocity Frequent Flyer Points to be won by Australians who have had the shot.

The competition will only be opened once all Australians become eligible for the vaccine which is expected to be sometime later this year. At the moment, only adults aged 40 years and older, as well as some other priority groups are eligible for the vaccine.

Virgin Australia’s bid to increase vaccine uptake comes just weeks after the airline’s chief executive said the country’s international borders must be reopened once all adults have been offered the vaccine.

Jayne Hrdlicka, who took over as CEO at the embattled airline last year, told a business conference that it was impossible to keep the virus out forever and that once the vaccines had been rolled out, the borders must be opened even if more people inevitably died as a result.

“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,” commented a Virgin Australia spokesperson on Wednesday.

“Most importantly, the sooner all Australians are vaccinated, the sooner our most vulnerable members of society will be protected.”

The full details about the prizes available through the VA-X & Win competition haven’t yet been released but the airline is promising free Business Class tickets and frequent flyer points as part of the sweepstakes.

Virgin Australia staffers will also be able to win free flights, Business Class lounge access and bonus annual leave as part of a separate competition to drive vaccination uptake amongst the airline’s workforce.

A spokesperson said the airline would give staff greater flexibility in order to schedule their vaccine appointments when they become eligible.

Rival airline Qantas is also going to launch its own vaccination competition, although full details haven’t yet been announced. Qantas chief customer officer Stephanie Tully said that the vaccine rollout was “key to keeping our domestic borders open and safely restarting international travel.”

United Airlines has also been running its own vaccine sweepstakes, although anti-vaxxers can still take part in the competition to possibly win free flights for an entire year.

Photo Credit: Peterfz30 /

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