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From Aberdeen to Australia, Manchester to Mumbai and Edinburgh to the East Coast, Virgin Atlantic passengers around the UK will now be able to enjoy seamless connections to our long haul destinations with the launch of our domestic flying programme.
We've confirmed that we'll be challenging British Airways head on by operating 24 domestic flights a day - six daily return flights to Edinburgh, three to Aberdeen and a further three to Manchester - starting from 31 March 2013.
The flights, which will operate from London Heathrow Terminal 1, will go on sale on the 19th December and start from £99 per person return.
A new era
"This is the beginning of an exciting new era in Virgin Atlantic history," said Virgin Atlantic Chief Executive, Steve Ridgway. "It’s been a long time coming but the dawn of our short haul service is now just a few months away. We’ve worked hard to produce the sort of operation that consumers have come to expect from us – with customer service and a unique approach to flying forming the key pillars for our new domestic routes.
“Most importantly, passengers will reap the benefits of increased choice and lower fares due to the reinjection of vital competition we can provide on these routes.
“We’ll be offering nine daily services to and from Scotland and three return flights between Manchester and London, giving us the scope to fly around one million passengers per year. Connecting passengers onto our long haul flights means we are truly making the world a smaller place.”
Best of British
We will be providing passengers with the best in British food and snacks on board, including a hot breakfast offering on early morning flights and specially-produced snacks during the rest of the day.
Flying Club Gold card holders and Upper Class passengers connecting onto Upper Class long haul flights with Virgin will have access to airport lounges at their departure airport, plus access to limo transfer services.
The Scottish Passenger Agents’ Association (SPAA), which has been vocal in its support for our submission - as the most effective approach to securing vital capacity, robust competition and high service standards on Anglo-Scottish routes - has expressed its satisfaction at the announcement.
"This is excellent news for both business and leisure air travellers in Scotland, whether they are flying to London or onbound to destinations worldwide," said SPAA President Kevin Thom. "It is also great news for Scotland's economy, and it will help expand the market - which will be positive for all airlines serving Scotland’s travellers."
The new short haul services will be operated by four Airbus A320 aircraft which will be leased from Aer Lingus but will fly in our recognisable Virgin Atlantic livery, with the on board offering in keeping with what passengers have come to expect on our long haul routes.
For more info or to book a flight, log on to www.virginatlantic.com or call 0844 2092 770.
Header photo of the Edinburgh skyline © Rhys Asplundh
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About the author: MaxineMaxine Sheppard
Maxine is the editor of the Virgin Atlantic blog. Travel and music are her joint first loves, and despite having written for Virgin for more years than she cares to remember she still loves nothing more than jumping on a plane in search of new sights and new sounds.