ATLANTA and LONDON, 2 April, 2014 – Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) and Virgin Atlantic Airways today mark another major step forward in their partnership as Delta relocates some of its key services to join Virgin Atlantic at Heathrow Terminal 3. The move comes as both airlines start flying their new and aligned summer schedules that offer customers more choice and flexibility while reducing onward transit times.
From today, Delta moves its arrival and departure terminal for several important business markets including its London to New York-JFK, London to Boston, and new London to Seattle services to Heathrow’s Terminal 3. The move enhances convenience and a seamless customer experience. On the world’s most important business travel market between London Heathrow and New York JFK Delta and Virgin Atlantic will now operate from the same terminal and make it easier for customers to manage their travel plans including any last minute flight changes. The two airlines have also introduced a dedicated New York to London schedule with the customer in mind.
“From the outset of our partnership with Virgin Atlantic we have been committed to putting the customer first and creating more competition on trans-Atlantic routes,” said Ed Bastian, Delta’s president. “The co-location of our key business flights with Virgin Atlantic at Heathrow is another step forward in delivering against these commitments. Together we are offering new routes and more flights this summer and making a real difference for customers.”
The new routes announced by Delta and Virgin Atlantic include Delta’s new West Coast service between Seattle and London Heathrow which commenced flying on March 30, 2014. And in co-operation with Virgin Atlantic, Delta will also operate a second daily service between London Heathrow and Detroit Metropolitan Airport effective June 2, 2014. The service will be particularly appealing to corporate customers needing an early morning arrival into London while offering more schedule choice for customers between London and the U.S. Midwest.
The two airlines’ summer schedule includes a total of 32 peak daily nonstop flights between North America and the U.K.. Of these, 25 flights will operate between London Heathrow and popular U.S. destinations such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, Atlanta and Washington.
Delta and Virgin Atlantic also provide a competitive offering for the New York to London travel market. It is designed with business travellers in mind and offers a total of nine daily nonstop flights. The schedule includes departures every 30 minutes during the early evening peak and then hourly until 22:30 from New York-JFK to London Heathrow. From London Heathrow to New York-JFK there is a spread of seven daily flights including two late afternoon and early evening departures. These services will be complemented by two daily nonstop flights between New York’s Newark airport and London Heathrow.
“Today marks another important step in our joint venture with Delta. We’re really pleased to welcome Delta customers into our home at Terminal 3 to enjoy a shared experience of our award-winning Clubhouses and industry-envied customer service. Virgin Atlantic prides itself on seamless journeys for our customers and we can now extend that to Delta’s New York, Boston and Seattle customers through an enhanced flying schedule and smoother connections. Couple these factors with our on board experiences and we’re confident our joint venture is the best trans-Atlantic offering in the marketplace,” said Craig Kreeger, Virgin Atlantic’s CEO.
The airlines’ customers benefit from a high-quality and complementary travel experience with customer service being an absolute priority.