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Virgin America launches partnership with Starwood preffered guest

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SPG members can now convert starpoints into elevate points at a 1-to-1 ratio and elevate members can earn two points for every dollar spent on Starwood Hotel stays.

SAN FRANCISCO and STAMFORD, CONN. - Virgin America, the upscale, low-cost airline announces an exciting new partnership with Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG), the award winning loyalty program of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. Beginning immediately, SPG members will be able to transfer Starpoints into Elevate points at a 1-to-1 ratio, and Elevate members will earn two points for every one dollar spent on Starwood Hotel stays. The additional rewards provided to Elevate members given the breadth of brands in the Starwood portfolio, will make it even easier to earn points wherever their travels take them.   

Additionally, Virgin America is announcing its "Work Hard, Hawai'i Hard" promotion*, aimed at incentivizing Angelenos to make the ultimate #Hawaiiscape with Virgin America's new seasonal daily nonstop flights from Los Angeles to Honolulu, Oahu (starting May 5, 2016) and Kahului, Maui (starting June 14, 2016). The promotion gives travelers the chance to win the ultimate escape package that includes tickets to paradise on Virgin America's upscale flights, luxury accommodations at either the Westin Moana Surfrider Hotel or the Sheraton Maui, and 50,000 Elevate points. To enter the #Hawaiiscape sweeps, participants must submit their Elevate number and tell us why they need a vacation at MakeYourHawaiiscape.com by May 27. All entrants who enter the promotion will automatically receive 250 Elevate points.  

"We're thrilled to announce our new loyalty partnership with Starwood Preferred Guest," said Stuart Dinnis, Director of Loyalty at Virgin America. "Both of our brands are known for providing fresh, modern and upscale travel experiences and Starwood Properties will be tremendously popular with our discerning flyers. We're looking forward to welcoming SPG members who may not have yet experienced Virgin America's award-winning service."  

Virgin America and Starwood have also partnered to create two tropical SPG MomentsSM to commemorate the partnership launch. SPG members can start bidding today on packages for two to Maui and Honolulu that include seats on Virgin America's inaugural flights to both locations and a four-night stay at either the Westin Maui or the Sheraton Waikiki. Both packages offer amazing foodie extras including a tour of Maui farms followed by a private lunch using collected ingredients, or an one-hour chartered Mai Tai Catamaran ride around the coastline of Oahu and a private 5-course wine pairing dinner on the pool lawn at the Sheraton Waikiki. These Moments also include Gold status on Virgin America for one year. For more information on SPG's Moments, including a complete schedule of 2016 events and bidding details, please visit spg.com/moments.

"This new partnership will enable SPG and Virgin America to extend loyalty outside of our hotels and beyond the window seat by giving our members transfer benefits and earning power," said Dana Rosenberg, Vice President, Global Partnerships at Starwood. "This will enhance the travel experience for our most valuable members and gives both Virgin American and Starwood an opportunity to reach frequent travellers who aren't part of our programs and capture greater share of the global, high-end traveller."

Virgin America's service is uniquely tailored to the modern traveler with new aircraft that offer three custom-designed classes of service, touch-screen personal entertainment and an award-winning on-demand food and cocktail menu on every flight. Virgin America has been named the "Best Domestic Airline" in both Conde Nast Traveler's Readers' Choice Awards and in Travel + Leisure's World's Best Awards for the past eight consecutive years.

Since launching in 2007, Virgin America's Elevate frequent flyer program has pioneered a number of loyalty benefits in the U.S. industry, including being the first to offer dynamic reward pricing – with the ability for guests to redeem reward points for any unsold seat – on any flight, at any time – with no blackout dates. Virgin America offers two status levels, Elevate Gold and Elevate Silver, which offer perks such as: priority check-in, security clearance and boarding; points earning bonuses; free checked bag allowances; an expanded advance purchase upgrade window for the airline's exclusive eight-seat First Class; complimentary space-available upgrades to the carrier's premium Main Cabin Select service; and complimentary access to the best seat assignments within Main Cabin – as well as access to the airline's airport lounge - the Virgin America Loft at LAX, which offers guests a sleek and modern retreat, with a selection of amenities and a space that reflects the look and feel of the airline's mood-lit aircraft and overall design aesthetic. Virgin America Visa Signature Premium card holders can also avoid paying additional fees to change or cancel non-refundable Virgin America flights.

Virgin America's new nonstop daily service to Hawaii will provide a fresh new option for Los Angeles travelers to head to paradise. The Aloha state is the 'most wanted' destination by members of Virgin America's Elevate® loyalty program and Hawai'i continues to be the number one tourism destination from the West Coast, with over 3.3 million visitors in 2014?.    

In addition to a Main Cabin that offers custom leather seating with a deeper, more comfortable pitch, Virgin America's First Class cabin offers plush white leather seating with 55 inches of pitch, 165 degrees of recline and lumbar massagers. The carrier's Main Cabin Select service offers 38-inches of pitch, free food and cocktails, an all-access pass to media, dedicated overhead bins and priority check-in/boarding. The Red® entertainment platform offers guests their own seatback touch-screen, with +25 latest release films, TV, interactive maps, videogames, a 3,000 song library, surround sound technology and an on-demand menu, which allows flyers to order from their seatback any time during a flight.

Virgin America flies to Austin, Boston, Cancun, Chicago, Dallas Love Field, Denver, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Los Cabos, Newark, New York (JFK and LGA), Orlando, Palm Springs, Portland, Puerto Vallarta, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington D.C. (IAD and DCA), Honolulu and Kahului, Maui.

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