Virgin Atlantic has reported a sharp rise in profits in the year to the end of February, bucking a trend seen by other airlines including main rival British Airways who reported a record annual operating loss of £401 million on Friday.
Virgin Atlantic is to launch flights between London Gatwick and Puerto Rico’s San Juan. The weekly services, which will operate via Antigua, from 7 November 2009.
Virgin Atlantic has appointed Steve Griffiths as its new Chief Operating Officer. Steve replaces Lyell Strambi, who returned to Australia at the end of last year.
Virgin Atlantic has launched new round-the-world fares from London Heathrow.
Virgin Atlantic is launching its first service over the Pacific on Friday. The V Australia service will fly direct between Sydney and Los Angeles. Passengers will now be able fly around the world on Sir Richard Branson’s airline for the first time in its 25-year history.
Virgin Atlantic has announced a possible 600 redundancies as it continues to reshape its business in the downturn.Meanwhile Ryanair has said it is cutting 200 jobs at its Dublin hub. The news follows plans to reduce staff at Shannon airport by 100.
Virgin Atlanticis to introduce a pay freeze from March in order to stay in the black and protect jobs during the recession.Steve Ridgway, Virgin Atlantic’s chief executive, said: “During a recession, we all have to act responsibly to ensure that jobs are protected and that consumers get the best service. A pay freeze among our staff will help us remain strong during a period of lower demand for air travel.”
Virgin Atlantic and bmi are to expand their existing codeshare agreement so that customers travelling on bmi’s UK domestic and Middle East networks can benefit from seamless connections with Virgin Atlantic’s North American services.
Virgin Atlantic could spark a premium-class price war with a British Airways by slashing fares by up to 40 percent.In an attempt to maintain bookings as the downturn deepens, the London-based carrier is offering discounts to all 30 of its worldwide destinations. Prices include a return to New York dropping by 40 percent, Johanessburg 37 percent, Miami 34 percent, St Lucia 34 percent and Cape Town 34 percent.
Virgin Atlantic is kick starting its new year by unveiling a £6 million campaign to mark its 25 years of flying.The airline celebrates its 25th birthday on 22 June 2009 and plans a series of adverts, special promotions and other activities in the build-up.
Virgin Atlantic has joined forces with NME Magazine for various ventures throughout Virgin’s inflight entertainment and inflight magazine, Seatback.
Sir Richard Branson, the President of Virgin Atlantic, has helped to put the finishing touches to new school facilities in Kenya which have been partially funded by some of the airline’s frequent flyers.