The convergence of Loyalty and Ancillaries at Virgin Atlantic
Virgin Atlantic head of loyalty and ancillary revenue development, Alan Lias, discusses the airline’s strategy for co-delivering future loyalty and ancillary revenue opportunities.
Seth Miller interviews Alan Lias, worldwide head of loyalty & ancillary revenue development at Virgin Atlantic.
In terms of loyalty and ancillary revenue development at Virgin Atlantic, Lias admits that his airline is influenced by 49% stake holder Delta Air Lines. Delta’s SkyMiles program has historically placed great emphasis on non-transportation (ancillary) revenue, and has yielded well over $1Billion in loyalty-based ancillaries per year for quite some time.
Just like Delta, Virgin has enjoyed a close relationship with American Express for many years, offering a choice of co-brand card products in both the US and UK markets. Surely customer data from the Amex relationship will aide in developing ancillary revenue opportunities for the airline that people care about.
Flying Club has a wide array of earning and spending choices with partners in hotels, car rentals, retail, financial and unique experiences from service providers in the Virgin Group. With a network limited to long haul service, liability management in the presence of generating ancillary revenue from mileage sales must extend beyond seat redemption. We can expect Virgin’s loyalty and ancillary growth to be highly dependent on non-airline earn and spend opportunities.