A vaccinated Australian could fly business class to London seven times for free as part of Virgin Australia’s bold move to encourage more people to get the sting.
The airline will launch a Covid-19 vaccination competition later this year – if all Australian adults are expected to be eligible for the vaccine – with a grand prize of one million Velocity Frequent Flyer Points.
The program, known as VA-X & Win, offers a number of other prizes, including dozens of free business class flights.
Camera iconVirgin Australia announces that it will start a national Covid-19 vaccination competition if all adults are eligible to receive the vaccination. David Swift Photo credit: News Corp Australia
The move follows Qantas’ announcement that it will start its own incentive program in July.
A recent 2006 online survey by the Growth Intelligence Center of Australians who have not received a Covid-19 vaccine found that travel-related incentives are an attractive proposition for those who oppose vaccination.
For those in the survey who described themselves as “hesitant” to get the vaccination, unlimited travel (24 percent), exemption from quarantine (23 percent), free return flight (22 percent), paid time off (22 percent) ) and discounted flights (21 percent) would act as an incentive.
After a survey by Virgin Australia found that 65 percent of their frontline team members were vaccinated, the airline announced it would also open an internal competition to reward team members who received the vaccination.
A spokesman for the Virgin Australia Group said the airline was obliged to use its voice in the community to raise Covid-19 vaccination rates for Australians.
“What the last lockdown in Melbourne taught us is that 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 locks, restrictions and closed borders,” said he.
“To just roll up your sleeve and get a Covid-19 shot, you could get away with tens of thousands of dollars in Virgin Australia and Velocity frequent flyer awards or be the lucky one to become a Velocity Points millionaire.
“We are also proud that so many members of our team have already been vaccinated. As an industry hard hit by Covid-19, we want to do everything in our power to help vaccinate the population and it makes sense to reward and encourage our colleagues who have been on the forefront of this pandemic along the way. “
Camera iconJulia Carroll with her one year old daughter Aurora, who is looking forward to traveling again. Tim Hunter. Photo credit: News Corp Australia
For graphic designer Julia Carroll, being able to travel fully again with her one-year-old daughter Aurora was enough to get her and her husband Ben Carroll to get a vaccination.
“Ben’s brother just had a baby boy, so California would be the first international destination on our hit list,” said Ms. Carroll.
“Ben and I like a long road trip, but with a baby we are more inclined to fly more now. We really wanted to go to Broome and Kimberley, but the drive was always a little too far.
Australia’s travel ban on citizens leaving the country is now tougher than Saudi Arabia’s, with even billionaire Sir Richard Branson contemplating our slow reopening of the border.
“I’m not entitled to the vaccine yet, but I have had friends who got it because of their careers and they were very positive about the vaccine.
“These (virgin) incentives are a positive step and really help. We will definitely get it. As soon as we are eligible, we will get in. “
For information and to register your interest, visit virginaustralia.com/vaxandwin