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Virgin Atlantic plans to offer over 1 million seats to India by 2025
Photo courtesy: UNI

Virgin Atlantic plans to offer over 1 million seats to India by 2025

| @indiablooms | 04 Apr 2024, 12:07 am

Bengaluru: Virgin Atlantic on Wednesday signalled its strong commitment to India by launching a new daily service to Bengaluru and announcing a second daily flight to Mumbai, starting this October.

This marks the airline's fifth daily service to India.

By 2025, Virgin Atlantic plans to offer over one million seats to India, reflecting a 350 percent capacity growth since 2019, Virgin Atlantic CEO Shai Weiss told reporters here.

"This growth underscores India's importance as a key strategic market for the airline," he added.

The increased flights also benefit cargo operations, particularly in supporting the movement of goods from sectors such as fashion, pharmaceuticals, and technology, Weiss said.

"Virgin Atlantic Cargo will offer over 40 million kg of space to and from India, representing a 336 percent increase in capacity compared to 2019," he said.

Weiss said the new services will operate on Virgin Atlantic's modern aircraft, the 787-9 Dreamliner, offering various cabin options including Upper Class, Premium, and Economy. The aircraft also features the airline's signature Upper-Class social space, he said.

Weiss said Virgin Atlantic offers seamless connectivity via London Heathrow to destinations throughout North America, including Seattle, San Francisco, and New York JFK, in partnership with Delta Air Lines.

Additionally, the airline has a strategic partnership with IndiGo, allowing customers to connect seamlessly from other destinations in India to London Heathrow, he said.

Through this partnership, customers have the convenience of booking a single ticket that enables seamless connections from various destinations in India, including Ahmedabad, Goa, and Hyderabad, to London Heathrow, Weiss said.

"This partnership expands the reach for travellers by offering access to a total of 36 additional destinations beyond the direct services to Delhi, Mumbai, and Bengaluru," he said.

Since its launch in September 2022, the partnership has successfully connected over 80,000 customers, providing them with enhanced travel options and convenience, Weiss said.

He said Virgin Atlantic plans to quadruple the number of Indian-based cabin crew by partnering with InterGlobe Air Transport, aiming to provide a more personalized service to Indian customers.

Chandru Iyer, British Deputy High Commissioner to Karnataka and Kerala and HM Deputy Trade Commissioner – South Asia (Investment), expressed pride and enthusiasm in welcoming Virgin Atlantic to Bengaluru.

He emphasized Virgin Atlantic's significance in enhancing the strong bond between the UK and India, contributing to what he referred to as the "living bridge" between the two nations.

With the increasing number of Indian travellers, including business professionals, tourists, and students, choosing the UK as their destination, Iyer highlighted the significant benefits that Virgin Atlantic's addition to the air travel options would bring to the southern region of India.

He extended a warm welcome to Virgin Atlantic on behalf of the British Deputy High Commission Bengaluru, signalling support and anticipation for the airline's positive impact on regional connectivity and bilateral relations.

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