Virgin to fly Manchester, St Lucia

Virgin Atlantic will launch a direct weekly service between Manchester and St Lucia from Thursday 16 November 2006.

This additional service continues the considerable expansion of Virgin Atlantics services out of Manchester over the last 12 months, with an extra service each week to Orlando bringing it up to daily and the launch of a weekly service to Barbados in November 2005.

The new service to St Lucia will be operated by a Boeing 747-400 aircraft and will be configured with 14 Upper Class seats, 58 Premium Economy seats and 379 seats in Economy.

The entire Virgin Atlantic Manchester fleet is fitted with the Upper Class Suite, which consists of a reclining leather seat for take off, a place to sit and eat a meal opposite your partner, the longest fully flat bed in the world with a proper mattress for sleeping on, a private onboard bar to drink at with your friends and four limousines per return trip.

Sir Richard Branson, Chairman of Virgin Atlantic, commented:

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“Manchester is a fundamental part of the overall expansion of the airline. In the last twelve months we have brought Orlando up to a daily service and launched a weekly flight to Barbados.

The new weekly service to St Lucia in 2006 will give our northern customers more choice of destinations for business and holidays. I am confident that it will be a popular addition to our route network.”

Justin Bell, Station Manger for Virgin Atlantic at Manchester Airport, said:

“We are very pleased that we are able to add another route to our growing operation from Manchester. To triple our destinations in just over a year is a testament to our commitment to the development of our Manchester base.”

Amanda Wills, Managing Director for Virgin Holidays commented:

“We are delighted Virgin Atlantic is introducing flights from Manchester to St Lucia, it will give our customers in the North even more choice and flexibility, especially with the recent launch of the Manchester to Barbados service as well.

St Lucia is one of our most popular destinations in the Caribbean, and I’m sure the new flight from Manchester will be extremely popular with our customers in the North.

Virgin Holidays take more than 120,000 customers to the Caribbean each year, and with the introduction of the new Manchester flights it will help us to strengthen our position as leading scheduled tour operator to the Caribbean.”

Flight VS079 will depart from Manchester International airport on Thursdays at 13.30 and arrive at Hewanorra Airport, St Lucia, at 18.10.

The return flight VS080 will depart St Lucia on Thursdays at 21.50, arriving into Manchester at 09.50 the following morning.
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