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Virgin Atlantic Announces its Return to the Caribbean

by: - June 22, 2020
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Virgin Atlantic has announced its plan to restart passenger flying to 17 additional destinations from August 2020.

Following the airline’s announcement that services from London Heathrow are expected to resume from 20th July 2020 onwards, Virgin Atlantic has unveiled more detailed plans that will see passenger flying restart to many destinations across the airline’s network. Flights from Barbados to London Heathrow start on 2nd August.

Juha Jarvinen, Chief Commercial Officer, Virgin Atlantic commented: “As countries around the world begin to relax travel restrictions, we look forward to welcoming our customers back onboard and flying them safely to many destinations across our network. From 20th July we are planning to resume some services and then from 1st August onwards, we will resume passenger flying to 17 additional destinations around the world including Barbados, Tel Aviv, Miami, Lagos and San Francisco,”

“However, we are monitoring external conditions extremely closely, in particular the travel restrictions many countries have in place including the 14 day quarantine policy for travellers entering the UK. We know that as the Covid-19 crisis subsides, air travel will be a vital enabler of the UK’s economic recovery. Therefore, we are calling for UK Government to continually review its quarantine measures and instead look at a multi-layered approach of carefully targeted public health and screening measures, including air bridges, which will support a successful and safe restart of international air travel for passengers and businesses.”

Virgin Atlantic planned return to flying from London Heathrow Terminal 2 (subject to change and dependent on travel restrictions)

Planned restart date Routes
20th July 2020 London Heathrow to Hong Kong
21st July 2020 London Heathrow to New York JFK, Los Angeles
1st August 2020 London Heathrow to Barbados
4th August 2020 London Heathrow to Shanghai
4th August 2020 London Heathrow to San Francisco
9th August 2020 London Heathrow to Tel Aviv
18th August 2020 London Heathrow to Miami
23rd August 2020 London Heathrow to Lagos
24th August 2020 London Heathrow and Manchester to Orlando (subject to CDC approval*)
25th August 2020 London Heathrow to Atlanta
September 2020 London Heathrow to Washington, Seattle, Las Vegas
September 2020 London Heathrow to Mumbai, Delhi
September 2020 London Heathrow to Johannesburg
October 2020 London Heathrow to Boston
October 2020 London Heathrow to Montego Bay, Antigua, Grenada and Tobago (via Antigua)
October 2020 Manchester to Barbados

Virgin Atlantic will operate temporarily from Terminal 2 at Heathrow, due to HAL’s terminal consolidation. Virgin Atlantic will return to its much-loved home at London Heathrow Terminal 3 when demand at Heathrow grows, enabling Terminal 3 to reopen

Virgin Atlantic has taken the difficult decision to delay the restart of its London Heathrow to Orlando service and it will now resume on 24th August 2020. Seasonal services from Glasgow and Belfast to Orlando will resume for selected dates in summer 2021. We will continue to monitor our network on an ongoing basis and expect more flights from London Heathrow and Manchester to resume in September and October 2020.  We expect flights from Barbados to Manchester to resume in October 2020.

Your Health & Wellbeing

To ensure the health and safety of our customers and our people, Virgin Atlantic is implementing additional measures to offer peace of mind in the airport and when taking to the skies**. These include enhanced and thorough cleaning practices at check in, boarding gates and onboard including the use of electrostatic spraying of high-grade disinfectant onboard in all our cabins and lavatories, ensuring no surface is left untouched.  Safe distancing will also be adhered to wherever possible, particularly at check-in and boarding and where not possible, masks will be required. We will provide a personal Health Pack for the wellbeing and comfort of all our customers, which will contain medical grade face masks as a requirement to be worn onboard, surface wipes and hand gel. In the short term, to minimise contact, we will also be offering a simplified hot food service in Economy and Premium Economy enclosed from preparation in a Covid-safe, monitored environment directly to our customers’ seats. Upper Class customers will receive a choice of hot meals, dessert including cheese & biscuits, which will be delivered to their seat on a tray. We will also be offering a temporary limited alcohol offering in all cabins.

Transporting Essential Cargo

In addition to the restart of passenger flying, Virgin Atlantic continues to operate cargo-only flights keeping global supply chains running and transporting essential supplies around the world. Throughout June, the airline plans to operate more than 600 cargo-only services, serving destinations including Delhi, Chicago, Brussels, Johannesburg, Lagos and Miami.

The airline also looks forward to continuing to partner with the Department for Health and the NHS, working with them on 17 cargo charters per week from Shanghai and Beijing throughout June and July, bringing in the vital medical supplies that the teams here in the UK urgently need to care for patients. To date the airline has carried over 44 million items of PPE from China to the UK.

 

At Airports

  • Proactive health screening (via questionnaire and verbal interviews) all our customers and denying boarding if any questions are answered positively.
  • Encouraging customers to use hand sanitizer stations at the check in and gate area
  • Advocating for the use of temperature checks to be administered upon arrival at the airport for the safety of all our customers and people, working closely with our airport partners to implement this.
  • Adhering to social distancing measures at check in and boarding gates to limit the number of customers in queues to avoid crowding.
  • Encouraging customers to check in 24 hours before or use the self-serve check in and bag drop to minimise contact. All check in areas and surfaces will be cleaned regularly with high-grade products, tested to be effective against viruses.
  • Working closely with our colleagues at the airports to ensure customers are safe as they pass through security. Security trays will be wiped after use, security teams will be wearing masks and customers can expect reduced lanes in this area to ensure social distancing.
  • All the seating and gate area around boarding will be sanitised to a high standard to offer customers peace of mind as they wait to board their flight.
  • Boarding will be limited to 10 customers at a time, starting from the back of the aircraft to minimise contact between customers.
  • On boarding, all customers will be asked to scan their own boarding pass and hold up their passport for inspection to minimize contact.
  • All of our people will be wearing face masks when in close contact with our customers.

Onboard

  • Where possible, ensuring our customers have space onboard. Some seats will not be available and they will be marked with special pillows.
  • Providing everyone flying with us with a Health Pack – a PPE kit with medical grade masks, surface wipes and hand sanitizer. All customers and our crew will be required to wear their masks for the duration of the flight.
  • Temporarily removing some onboard items including Vera, our inflight magazine and our retail therapy service, to minimize contact between customers. Customers can still use our pre-order service from our great range of products in advance of their flight.
  • We will be offering a simplified hot food service in Economy and Premium Economy, enclosed from preparation in a Covid-safe, monitored environment directly to our customers’ seats. Upper Class customers will receive a choice of hot meals, desserts including cheese & biscuits, which will be delivered to their seat on a tray.
  • Serving a temporary limited alcohol offering in all cabins.
  • Meticulous cleaning measures have been put in place, disinfecting the aircraft before each flight, using hospital grade, registered disinfecting product, tested to be highly effective against viruses.
  • Fogging (electrostatic spraying) of high-grade disinfectant in all our cabins before every flight.
  • Dedicated isolation areas in place on each flight for any customers or crew who may potentially present symptoms onboard.
  • All air going through highly effective High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters that remove dust, allergens, bacteria, viruses and other particles from cabin air (testing shows a removal efficiency of 99.999%). As a result the cabin environment is one of the safest environments due to the vertical air circulation and filtration, with all air going