Category Archives: Virgin Atlantic Airways

Virgin Atlantic to cease flying between Dubai and London Heathrow

Virgin Atlantic Airways Airbus A330-343 G-VINE (msn 1231) LHR (SPA). Image: 942568.

Virgin Atlantic Airways has announced that it will withdraw flights between Dubai and London Heathrow from March 31, 2019.

After conducting a thorough review of its network, the airline has made the difficult decision to stop flying between Dubai and London due to a combination of external factors which mean it is no longer economically viable.

Shai Weiss, Chief Commercial Officer for Virgin Atlantic, said: “It‘s never an easy decision to withdraw a route, and we’d like to thank our customers and dedicated team in Dubai for their loyalty over the last 12 years. We’ll continue to offer daily flights between Dubai and London Heathrow until March 31, 2019, and will be sad to say goodbye to this fantastic city.”

Copyright Photo: Virgin Atlantic Airways Airbus A330-343 G-VINE (msn 1231) LHR (SPA). Image: 942568.

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Air France-KLM, Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic sign definitive agreements to strengthen trans-Atlantic partnership

Virgin Atlantic Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner G-VNEW (msn 40956) "Birthday Girl"  LHR (SPA). Image: 941875.

Air France-KLM, Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic Limited on May 15, 2018 signed definitive agreements paving the way forward for their expanded trans-Atlantic joint venture:

  • The Joint Venture Agreement signed between Air France-KLM, Delta and Virgin Atlantic sets out the governance as well as the commercial and operational terms of the expanded trans-Atlantic Joint Venture.
  • Upon completion, Air France-KLM will acquire a 31 percent stake in Virgin Atlantic currently held by Virgin Group for £220 million.
  • Virgin Group will retain a 20 percent stake and Chairmanship of Virgin Atlantic.
  • Delta will retain its 49 percent stake.

Air France-KLM, Delta and Virgin Atlantic will now coordinate efforts to secure the appropriate regulatory approvals.

The airlines’ expanded joint venture will become the preferred choice for customers travelling across the Atlantic offering the most comprehensive route network, convenient flight schedules, competitive fares and reciprocal frequent flyer benefits, including the ability to earn and redeem miles across all carriers. Customers will also benefit from the co-location of facilities at key hub airports to improve connectivity and access to each carrier’s airport lounges for premium passengers.

The signed agreements are all subject to regulatory approvals.

Copyright Photo: Once finalized, Virgin Atlantic will have a new ownership structure. Virgin Atlantic Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner G-VNEW (msn 40956) “Birthday Girl” LHR (SPA). Image: 941875.

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Delta and Virgin Atlantic offer more choice between U.S. and U.K. this summer

Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic launch their joint summer 2018 schedule this weekend – offering more nonstop flights than ever before from the U.S. to four airports in the U.K..

The leading trans-Atlantic partnership will offer more than 5 million seats between the U.S. and U.K. this summer, making it even easier to spend the holidays in London, Edinburgh, Glasgow or Belfast.

Highlights include:

More choice to London

  • Delta will resume the only nonstop services from Portland, Oregon, and Salt Lake City to London-Heathrow. Flights from Salt Lake City launch on April 1 with services to Portland, OR taking off on May 3.
  • Virgin Atlantic, meanwhile, is adding a sixth daily service from New York-JFK to London Heathrow, while Delta is introducing the larger A330 onto its two daily services. Together, the partnership will be increasing capacity between the two hubs by 6 percent.
  • Delta has also scheduled A330s on services to London from Atlanta and Detroit, adding capacity on these two hub-to-hub routes also.

Delta Air Lines Airbus A330-323 N813NW (msn 799) NRT (Michael B. Ing). Image: 902202.

Above Copyright Photo: Delta Air Lines Airbus A330-323 N813NW (msn 799) NRT (Michael B. Ing). Image: 902202.

Increased nonstop flights to Scotland and Northern Ireland

  • Delta and Virgin Atlantic will be kicking off their biggest ever season to Scotland this summer – offering up to 17 flights a week from New York-JFK and Orlando.
  • Delta will operate daily nonstop services from New York-JFK to both Glasgow and Edinburgh Airports.
  • Virgin Atlantic is operating its longest season from Orlando to Belfast International – trebling the number of seats available.

Multiple connections to Manchester

  • Virgin Atlantic is increasing capacity between New York and Manchester, and will introduce a Boeing 747-400 onto the service from May.
  • Virgin Atlantic is also reintroducing its popular seasonal flights to Manchester from Las Vegas, San Francisco and Boston.

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Bottom Copyright Photo: Virgin Atlantic Airways Boeing 747-4Q8 G-VBIG (msn 26255) LHR (SPA). Image: 929824.

Virgin Atlantic Airways Boeing 747-4Q8 G-VBIG (msn 26255) LHR (SPA). Image: 929824.

Virgin Atlantic to fly twice daily London Heathrow – Johannesburg

Virgin Atlantic Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner G-VFAN (msn 37977) MIA (Ken Petersen). Image: 936548.

Virgin Atlantic Airways has announced it will fly twice-daily between London (Heathrow) and Johannesburg starting on October 28, 2018. This comes after South African announced it would reduce its frequencies on the route to a daily flight.

Copyright Photo (other by Virgin Atlantic): Virgin Atlantic Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner G-VFAN (msn 37977) MIA (Ken Petersen). Image: 936548.

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Virgin Atlantic updates its economy section

Virgin Atlantic Airways Airbus A330-343 G-VSXY (msn 1195) MIA (Bruce Drum). Image: 104583.

Virgin Atlantic Airways on March 7 announced the launch of three new ways to fly economy as part of a multi-million pound investment in the cabin for the 21st century traveller.

From the spring of 2018, Virgin Atlantic will introduce ‘Economy Delight, ‘Economy Classic’ and ‘Economy Light’ tickets. The three new ways to fly will allow customers to choose the product that suits their budget and travel style – but never compromise on inclusive food and drink, unrivalled service, and inflight entertainment.

Economy Delight will offer the leading economy product of any UK airline  – customers will enjoy a seat with 34 inch legroom, priority check in and boarding as well as advanced seat assignment. Economy Classic will now offer free seat assignment – providing extra reassurance for families and groups that they can sit together. The new Economy Light ticket will always offer Virgin Atlantic’s lowest fare – making long haul travel affordable and accessible for millennials, and customers jetting off on city breaks.

What the new fares offer:

Economy Light

Pack light and pay less.
Seat allocated at check in, then sail through security with hand luggage only.

 

Meals, drinks and snacks included

Hand baggage only

No refunds or changes

Economy Classic

Little extras that make a big difference.
Take a bag and choose your seats in advance.

Meals, drinks and snacks included

 1 x 23kg checked bag

 Free seat selection at any time

 Upgradeable with miles

Economy Delight

A bit more legroom, a lot more style.
Take the comfort level up a notch and get settled in sooner.

Meals, drinks and snacks included

 1 x 23kg checked bag

 Free seat selection at any time

 Upgradeable with miles

 Extra legroom seat

 Premium check in

 Priority boarding

Craig Kreeger, Chief Executive of Virgin Atlantic, said:

“We’re unveiling the biggest change to our Economy cabin in over a decade – launching three new ways to fly, and a host of innovations on the ground and in the air as part of a wider £300 million investment in our customers. We know that one size doesn’t fit all, and from spring our customers can afford to be choosy and still travel in the UK’s leading economy cabin.

“We always want flying with Virgin Atlantic to be more special than other airlines, and we’ll never compromise on excellent service, industry leading food and drink and cutting edge inflight entertainment – regardless of which Economy ticket our customers are travelling on, they’ll be able to enjoy all this onboard.”

Sir Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Atlantic, said:

“When I started Virgin Atlantic I wanted to challenge the status quo and make flying amazing – regardless of which cabin you’re in – and that’s still true today.  We’re unveiling a multimillion pound investment to make Virgin Atlantic’s Economy cabin the best of any UK airline and setting the bar for others to follow.”

The three new ways to travel are part of a wider investment in Virgin Atlantic’s Economy cabin – delivering innovations on the ground, and in the air:

  • Investing in additional Economy Delight seats: At a time when most airlines are packing seats onto planes, Virgin Atlantic is investing in extra leg room. The airline is retrofitting its fleet to provide up to 36 Economy Delight seats on every flight – offering customers an even comfier journey with spacious 34 inch legroom.
  • Serving up the best Economy meals in the sky: All customers travelling in Economy will continue to enjoy a three course meal plus complimentary drinks and snacks – with a focus on supporting independent suppliers such as UK based Fairfield Farm Crisps, and the Grown Up Chocolate Company.
  • More personalised service at the airport: For the first time Virgin Atlantic is introducing automated bag drop at London airports, freeing up employees to provide a more personalised service where customers need it most. Four kiosks will open at London Gatwick this summer, followed by a further 18 kiosks at London Heathrow from winter 2018.
  • Keeping our customers connected: Every single seat in Economy now offers a personal USB charging point, and every route offers access to high speed Wi-Fi to help customers work and play on the go.
  • New aircraft: 12 new Airbus A350-1000 aircraft will join the fleet from spring 2019 – offering unrivalled levels of comfort and reliability for customers, and a brand new Economy cabin designed with Virgin Atlantic’s customers in mind.
  • Virgin scent: Virgin Atlantic has partnered with leading British candle maker Rachel Vosper to create a new scent called “Air.” Designed to evoke wellbeing and inspire future travel it will be available across check in, the gate and upon boarding the aircraft.

Virgin Atlantic and Delta offer the leading transatlantic partnership, and the new Economy products will offer a seamless experience for customers travelling with the airlines. Economy Delight, Economy Classic and Economy Light will complement Delta’s Comfort +, Main Cabin and Basic Economy products  – always offering a three course meal , Wi-Fi, hundreds of hours of inflight entertainment and excellent service regardless of the ticket type.

Copyright Photo: Virgin Atlantic Airways Airbus A330-343 G-VSXY (msn 1195) MIA (Bruce Drum). Image: 104583.

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Virgin Atlantic is adding four Airbus A330-200s

Virgin Atlantic Airways Airbus A330-343 G-VINE (msn 1231) LHR (SPA). Image: 940830.

On social media, Virgin Atlantic Airways (London) announced the addition of its first Airbus A330-200 to the fleet:

Say hello to “Daydream Believer”, an Airbus A330-200 that’s the latest addition to our fleet.

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Virgin Atlantic is adding four ex-Airberlin Airbus A330-200s.

The aircraft will be flying from Manchester to New York-JFK (starting on March 1), Atlanta (March 2), Barbados (May 17), San Francisco (May 22) and Boston (May 23).

According to the carrier, “These aircraft will add resilience to our flying program in light of an industry-wide shortage of Trent 1000 engines used on our Boeing 787 aircraft.”

The four additions:

Airbus A330-223 G-VMNK (msn 403, ex D-ALPA) “Daydream Believer”

Airbus A330-223 G-VWND (msn 476, ex D-ALPF) “Scarlett O’Hara”

Airbus A330-223 G-VMIK (msn 432, ex D-ALPB) “Honky Tonk Woman”

And a fourth to be registered as G-VLNM “Strawberry Fields”

Each of the aircraft will feature 19 fully flat beds in Upper Class, 45 extra leg room economy seats and 222 economy seats.

Top Copyright Photo: The Airbus A330-200s will join with the A330-300s already in the fleet. Virgin Atlantic Airways Airbus A330-343 G-VINE (msn 1231) LHR (SPA). Image: 940830.

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Virgin Atlantic launches twice-weekly London Heathrow – Barbados service

Virgin Atlantic Airways Airbus A330-343 G-VSXY (msn 1195) LHR (SPA). Image: 924729.

Virgin Atlantic Airways (London) on December 12, 2017 launched twice-weekly Airbus A330-300 service to Bridgetown, Barbados from London (Heathrow).

Copyright Photo: Virgin Atlantic Airways Airbus A330-343 G-VSXY (msn 1195) LHR (SPA). Image: 924729.