Virgin Atlantic’s new domestic services will see it operating 24 flights from April next year, the airline has announced. (Featured image by Ronnie MacDonald)
The carrier successfully bid for routes between Heathrow and Scotland last month, and has now revealed details of its first ever domestic services.
It will operate six return flights a day between Heathrow and Edinburgh, and three return flights a day between Heathrow and Aberdeen.
As well as the new routes between Heathrow and Scotland, Virgin Atlantic is also launching a service between the London airport and Manchester. The airline will operate three return flights a day between the two cities, beginning on March 31.
“Throughout its history, Virgin Atlantic has successfully fought British Airways all over the world and has offered passengers a compelling alternative through our renowned product and service,” said Steve Ridgway, Virgin Atlantic’s chief executive.
“We will look to replicate that in our short-haul flying and challenge the current BA monopoly on these routes which is causing serious consumer harm.”
The airline has said that 130 flying jobs and 25 office jobs will be created as a result of the new services, along with a number of indirect jobs.
Aircraft and crew will be supplied by Irish airline Aer Lingus for the new routes, with the aircraft repainted in Virgin Atlantic colours.
Virgin Atlantic’s new routes have been welcomed by Keith Brown, Scotland’s Transport Minister, who said that it’s important for the two cities to have good transport links.
“We are pleased that the European Commission has taken note of the need for both Edinburgh and Aberdeen to be served and that Virgin Atlantic will now be able to operate from two of Scotland’s most important cities,” he said.
The airline hopes to fly nearly one million passengers each year on the new routes. Tickets for the Scottish services go on sale on December 19, with fares starting from £99 for return flights.