Thursday, August 13, 2020

Air bubble: Virgin Atlantic to start flights to Delhi & Mumbai next month

New Delhi: Virgin Atlantic will connect Delhi and Mumbai with London under the travel bubble arrangement India has created with the UK. It plans to have three flights a week on London Heathrow-Delhi route from September 2; and four flights a week to Mumbai from a fortnight later.

Last week British Airways had also announced it will August 17 resume “relief” flights from London Heathrow to the country on which people eligible to travel as per current government norms can do so. BA will operate five flights a week from Delhi and Mumbai to London Heathrow. Hyderabad and Bangalore will have four BA flights a week to London.

So far, Air India is the only airline operating special flights to the UK. Now Vistara and SpiceJet have got slots at Heathrow. Vistara has a wide body Dreamliner in its fleet and the second Dreamliner will be joining early next week. Vistara will deploy this aircraft to London. SpiceJet is considering wet-leasing (hiring with operating crew) a twin aisle for a daily flight to London, possibly from Delhi.

Meanwhile, Virgin Atlantic on Thursday said: “All customers eligible under the guidelines issued by the (Indian) ministry of home affairs as per the air bubble scheme will be able to travel onboard Virgin Atlantic’s direct services to London Heathrow and US. The airline plans to operate three flights a week from Delhi to London Heathrow from September 2, 2020. Mumbai service restarts from September 17 and will operate four flights a week to London. Both the destinations will provide connections to New York JFK and will operate on 787-9 Dreamliner,” the airline said in a statement.
13/08/20 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India

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