Virgin Atlantic is set to deploy its brand new aircraft, the Airbus A350-1000 on the Lagos-London Heathrow route from August 2020.
The new aircraft will offer over 240,000 seats between the two cities, increasing capacity by 8.7% compared to the A340-600 which is currently serving the route.
According to Virgin Atlantic, Chief Executive Officer, Shai Weiss, who was in Lagos to share experience with stakeholders of the aircraft, he said the A350 boasts of a totally redesigned Upper Class cabin and social space, designed to take customers experience to new heights.
He said customers can now enjoy The Loft, largest social space in the airline’s fleet, which is designed for customers to gather, chat, enjoy a drink or dine with friends
He added that the Loft is not the only innovation to the Upper Class Cabin, as customers can also experience entirely new suites which have been designed in collaboration with a number of Virgin Atlantic’s most frequent flyers.
Weiss stated that customers travelling in Virgin Atlantic’s award winning Premium cabin and its much loved economy cabin will also be able to enjoy increased levels of luxury and comfort the A350 has to offer.
He said the entire aircraft will also have to high speed wifi as well as the unique and personalised service of Virgin Atlantic’s world famous Cabin crew.
“Our Nigerian customers have always been amongst our most loyal and supportive and we’re delighted they will now be able to experience our brand new A350-1000 between Lagos and London Heathrow. Not only will it increase capacity for us on this popular route, it represents a true evolution of our customer experience and forms a significant part of our fleet transformation strategy. By 2024, we’ll operate the youngest, cleanest, greenest fleet in the sky and the fuel efficiency of Virgin Atlantic’s fleet will have improved by 32 per cent,”.
Virgin Atlantic has now taken delivery of three A350 aircraft currently flying on the London Heathrow to New York, JFK route, then scheduled to fly on Los Angeles, San Francisco, Johannesburg and Lagos in 2020. In total, Virgin Atlantic has ordered 12 Airbus A350-1000, joining the fleet by 2021 in an order worth an estimated $4.4 billion.
Also, Virgin Atlantic Commercial Manager, Nigeria, Justin Bell said: “This new aircraft is proof of our commitment to Nigeria and our customers. For years we have led the industry with the unparalleled service we offer our customers and this focus drives the inherent preference for Virgin Atlantic that exist today and remains at the core of everything we do”.
The aircraft, powered by Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines, continues Virgin Atlantic’s investment in a more sustainable fleet. The aircraft is designed to be 30% more fuel and carbon efficient than the aircraft(A340-600) it replaces and is expected to reduce the airline’s noise footprint at its airports by more than half.