Virgin Atlantic Cancels All But 37 Weekly Flights

Coronavirus cases have been on the rise in the United Kingdom, particularly in England. To combat this soaring second wave, a new set of national ‘lockdown’ restrictions has come into effect in England. These restrictions, in effect from November 5th until December 2nd, will see UK airline Virgin Atlantic drastically reducing its flight schedule to adapt to the new situation. Let’s examine what the airline’s revised schedule will look like.

Virgin Atlantic, COVID-19, Crew Tests
Virgin Atlantic has 14 Airbus A330s in its fleet – all of which have been grounded. Photo: Getty Images

Responding to England’s new restrictions

Joining other airlines like easyJet and Emirates, Virgin Atlantic is reducing its services as a direct result of new restrictions and the expected drop in customer demand. The revised schedule, effective from November 8th until December 3rd, will temporarily reduce passenger flying. A Virgin Atlantic spokesperson provided the following statement to Simple Flying:

“If we cancel a customer’s flight, we will be in touch with them and they will have the option to rebook or request a refund. We apologize for any disappointment or inconvenience caused to our customers and remain so grateful for their patience during these extraordinary circumstances.”

What are the 37 weekly flights?

The link embedded within the above Twitter post will direct you to the finer details of the airline’s flight schedule, but let’s take a broad look at the airline’s revised operations for the next month and where it will be flying passengers.

As mentioned, there are just 37 weekly flights now. These will serve 14/15 destinations, which are as follows:

  • Atlanta (2x weekly on a 787)
  • Barbados/Antigua (a multi-stop service) (2x weekly on a 787)
  • Boston (2x weekly on a 787)
  • Delhi (3x weekly on a 787)
  • Hong Kong (2x weekly on a 787)
  • Johannesburg (2x weekly on a 787)
  • Lagos (3x weekly on an A350)
  • Los Angeles (5x weekly on an A350)
  • New York (7x weekly on a 787 or A350)
  • Miami (1x weekly on a 787)
  • Montego Bay (2x weekly on a 787)
  • Mumbai (2x weekly on a 787)
  • Shanghai (2x weekly on a 787)
  • Tel Aviv (2x weekly on a 787)
Virgin Atlantic Boeing 787 dreamliner India
The airline will mostly deploy its fleet of Boeing 787-9 aircraft on these routes, with three destinations seeing the A350. Photo: Getty Images

Maintaining connectivity

The airline notes that it will continue to serve many of its existing destinations out of its London Heathrow hub, just with a reduced frequency. This will hopefully allow travelers wishing to continue with their travel plans the ability to carry on with their trip.

“While we have reduced our passenger flying schedule, we’ll continue to serve many of Virgin Atlantic’s destinations on a reduced frequency and provide vital international connectivity from London Heathrow Terminal 2 for customers that need to fly, including journeys permitted for work, education or other legally permitted reasons,” -Virgin Atlantic spokesperson

Virgin atlantic livery
Just over half of Virgin Atlantic’s fleet is listed as ‘parked.’ Photo: Getty Images

The spokesperson also said that the airline will continue to build on the success of its cargo-only operations. These services have been helping to keep global supply chains moving.

Have your Virgin Atlantic travel plans been affected by this schedule change? Please share your experience with us by leaving a comment.