Virgin Atlantic (VS/VIR) recently announced it was to resume passenger flights from London Heathrow from 20th July but only to limited destinations.
The initial offering included just Orlando, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, New York JFK and Shanghai but has now delayed the resumption of the Heathrow – Orlando service to the 24th August.
Virgin Atlantic has said it will add 17 more routes in August to destinations including Tel Aviv, Miami, Lagos and San Francisco.
The chief commercial officer at Virgin Atlantic, Juha Jarvinen, said: “As countries around the world begin to relax travel restrictions, we look forward to welcoming our customers back onboard and flying them safely to many destinations across our network.”
The airline is closely monitoring the quarantine rules in around the world though and in particular, in the UK as currently, all passengers arriving into the UK from an international destination must self-isolate for 14 days.
But Virgin Atlantic is one of several airlines calling for the government to rethink that policy.
Mr Jarvinen added “We know that as the Covid-19 crisis subsides, air travel will be a vital enabler of the UK’s economic recovery.
“Therefore, we are calling for UK government to continually review its quarantine measures and instead look at a multi-layered approach of carefully targeted public health and screening measures, including air bridges, which will support a successful and safe restart of international air travel for passengers and businesses.”
Like many airlines, the Virgin Atlantic that resumes services next month will be a very different one to the that went into the Global Pandemic. The airline is no longer as Boeing 747-400 operator, it no longer operates from London Gatwick, its spiritual home and has made around 1/3 of its workforce redundant.
The airline also said that it would look to resume its seasonal services from Belfast and Glasgow in 2021.