Virgin Atlantic is launching services to Delhi and Mumbai from Manchester as the airline ramps up flying from its home in the north.
Flying three times a week from Manchester to Mumbai beginning in December and twice weekly to Delhi starting in January.
With more than 16 million Indians living outside of their country and 500,000 living across the north of England, India has the world’s largest diaspora. These new services will open up more than 130,000 seats between Manchester and India and aim to respond to the large, fast-growing demand to visit friends and relatives as well as capturing demand for business and leisure travel to the region as global economies gradually recover from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
These new routes quickly follow the news that it will also fly to Islamabad and Lahore in Pakistan. Pre-pandemic, Pakistan’s flag carrier PIA had a substantial route network between United Kingdom and Pakistan. However, PIA is not allowed to fly into European Airspace for the rest of 2020 following a review of the airline’s safety practices.
Virgin Atlantic is now capitalising on the routes flying between the two countries for the first time. The airline has also been hit particular hard as many destinations in its existing route network, such as South Africa and the United States, are currently not allowing British passengers entry.
Juha Jarvinen, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Atlantic commented: “We’re delighted to launch new flying from our home in the north in Manchester. India boasts the largest foreign-born population in the UK and we’re anticipating that post Covid-19, the demand to travel home to visit loved ones will increase.
“Following the relaunch of services from Heathrow to Mumbai and Delhi in September 2020, these new services from Manchester represent our continued investment in India. Both Mumbai and Delhi are popular year-round destinations, and we look forward to welcoming travellers from the North and Midlands onboard as demand for leisure and business travel gradually increases to the region.
Image: Virgin Atlantic.
There are 31 Upper Class, 35 Premium and 192 Economy seats on Boeing 787-9 aircrafts that it will use on all of the above routes.
The airline will also resume services to Barbados this month.
Return Economy fares start from £473 per person, Premium from £733, and Upper Class from £2,481.