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#964900 by mitchja
20 May 2022, 12:33
Update from VS Trade today.

VS have now canceled EDI>BGI over winter season.

Operational Update – 20 May 2022
As we emerge from the pandemic, we’ve had to make careful decisions about our network, continually reviewing our flying schedules.

Twice-weekly Orlando services commenced on 30 March from our home in Scotland, Edinburgh Airport, and is already delighting families and holidaymakers jetting to the theme park capital of the world. Unfortunately we have had to take the difficult decision to suspend plans to operate Edinburgh – Barbados services this Winter. We’re very sorry for disrupting customers’ plans, however, we know Barbados is a firm winter sun favourite and we will continue to operate services from Heathrow and Manchester.

Customers will automatically be booked on to a Manchester service, with all reasonable transport costs to and from Manchester reimbursed by customers completing this form . If any re-routing is not suitable, affected customers can also choose to amend their flights with no change fee or request a refund.

We’ll continue to evaluate new routes for our Edinburgh gateway and remain fully committed to serving our Scottish customers, in close cooperation with our partners at Edinburgh Airport.

We’re also making some adjustments and consolidations to our Winter flight schedule between November 2022 and March 2023 to support our network planning. We’re changing the days that our three-weekly Heathrow – St Lucia services will operate, with the original services cancelled and customers rebooked on to the new scheduled flights. A small number of US and Tel Aviv service frequencies will also be cancelled, with alternative flights available on the same day, and the start date of our London Heathrow - Cape Town service has been pushed back one week to 5 November.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused by these changes. Our flexible booking policy allows customers to further amend their flights, should they wish, with no change fees, all the way until 31 December 2023. If the new departure time is over three hours’ difference to the original departure time, then customers can also request a refund.

Bookings affected by these changes will be updated in your GDS on Saturday 21 May 2022.

During Winter 22, we plan to operate the following schedule, subject to late changes:

Our Winter 22 Flying Schedule

USA
LHR-JFK-LHR 35 per week in Oct
39 per week Nov-Mar A351/B789/A333
LHR-MIA-LHR 7 per week in Oct A333/A351
LHR-LAX-LHR 14 per week A351
LHR-BOS-LHR 7 per week B789
LHR-SFO-LHR 14 per week in Oct
7 per week Nov-Mar B789
LHR-IAD-LHR 5 per week in Oct
7 per week Nov-Mar A333
LHR-MCO-LHR 14 per week in Oct
10 per week in Nov
7 per week Dec-Mar A333
LHR-ATL-LHR 7 per week A351
LHR-SEA-LHR 5 per week in Oct
7 per week Nov-Mar B789
LHR-LAS-LHR 7 per week B789
LHR-AUS-LHR 4 per week B789

Caribbean
LHR-ANU-LHR 3 per week in Oct
4 per week Nov-Mar A333
LHR-BGI-LHR 7 per week in Oct
10 per week Nov-Mar A333/B789
LHR-SVD-LHR
(via BGI) 2 per week A333
LHR-TAB-LHR
(via BGI) 2 per week A333
LHR-GND-LHR
(via BGI) 2 per week A333
LHR-UVF-LHR 3 per week Nov-Mar A333
LHR-MBJ-LHR 4 per week in Oct
7 per week Nov-Mar B789
LHR-NAS-LHR 2 per week B789
LHR-HAV-LHR 3 per week Nov-Mar B789

London to Rest of World
LHR-PVG-LHR Shanghai restart date to be confirmed
LHR-HKG-LHR 7 per week B789
LHR-DEL-LHR 14 per week B789
LHR-BOM-LHR 7 per week B789
LHR-LHE-LHR 4 per week B789
LHR-ISB-LHR 3 per week B789
LHR-LOS-LHR 7 per week A351
LHR-JNB-LHR 7 per week B789
LHR-CPT-LHR 7 per week Nov-Mar B789
LHR-TLV-LHR 7 per week A333

Manchester and Regional Flying
MAN-MCO-MAN 12 per week in Oct
7 per week Nov-Feb
9 per week in Mar A333
MAN-BGI-MAN 3 per week Nov-Mar A333
MAN-ATL-MAN 5 per week in Oct
4 per week Oct-Feb
7 per week in Mar A333
MAN-JFK-MAN 7 per week Oct-Nov
6 per week in Dec
5 per week Jan-Feb
7 per week in Mar A333
EDI-MCO-EDI 2 per week in Oct A333
MAN-ISB-MAN 2 per week in Oct B789
#964948 by flyingfox
26 May 2022, 10:39
Update from VS Trade;

Network Update – 26 May 2022
As we emerge from the pandemic we’ve had to make careful decisions about our network, with regular review of our flying schedules. We’re disappointed to confirm that due to the unique complexities of Cuban operations, we have taken the difficult decision to withdraw our plans for London Heathrow – Havana services. Our services scheduled to commence from 30th October 2022, operating as a Winter-only service until 24 March 2023, will be cancelled.

We sincerely apologise for disrupting customers’ plans to visit this vibrant and much-loved leisure destination. In recent years Virgin Atlantic operated the UK’s only direct scheduled flights to Havana, working closely with valued partners in the UK and Cuba to support holidaymakers to discover this vibrant and much-loved leisure destination . We will keep options under review to return to this unique part of the Caribbean in the future. As it stands, we do not have plans to operate the service in Winter 2023.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused by these changes. Our flexible booking policy allows customers to amend their flights, should they wish, with no change fees, all the way until 31 December 2023. If any re-routing is not suitable, affected customers can also choose to request a refund.

Bookings affected by these changes were updated iSaturday 28 May 2022.
#964949 by VS075
26 May 2022, 12:22
You would think, given their history operating to Cuba, these "complexities" would have been known about and worked out before launching the route. It's not really a good look if routes are being announced and then pulled before they even started (e.g. MAN-MBJ, MAN-DEL, MAN-BOM).
#965006 by mitchja
04 Jun 2022, 21:31
Whilst this is not VS related news, looks like LHR T4 re-opens from June 14th as businesstraveller.com are reporting Qatar Airways are moving back to T4 from that date.

That should make T4 hotels easier/cheaper to access again as I presume the bridge link to the terminal along with the T4 tube/HEX stations reopen at the same time?

Currently the only transport options for T4 hotels are local buses or hotel hopper busses.
#965024 by ColOrd
07 Jun 2022, 00:57
I suspect it might make them more expensive again! The T4 Hilton was often available quite cheaply for a hotel of its standard (£100) a night but they were often only at 50% occupancy. With the bridge back open that will get the occupancy back up but so I suspect will thé rates go back to their £160 type level!
#965029 by VS075
07 Jun 2022, 09:15
ColOrd wrote:I suspect it might make them more expensive again! The T4 Hilton was often available quite cheaply for a hotel of its standard (£100) a night but they were often only at 50% occupancy. With the bridge back open that will get the occupancy back up but so I suspect will thé rates go back to their £160 type level!


I think James is referring to T4 area hotels being cheaper to access by foot/public transport rather than hotel rates being cheaper in general.

However, I'm not familiar with the layout of the T4 area.
#965030 by mitchja
07 Jun 2022, 10:23
Sorry yes I was referring to the limited transfer options, however, both points are spot on actually as I managed to grab a really good deal at the T4 Crowne Plaza, club level room for ~£100 but then I decided to cancel after looking at the limited transfer options. The same room is now at least £150 even with a CDC.

The T4 Crowne Plaza website does mention the nearest tube station is Hatton Cross but looking at online maps that looks to be a good 20 minute walk which also doesn't look particularly easy either.

The T2 Hilton Garden Inn is often silly money and availability is often limited as well. The service there isn't the best either as I had painfully slow service in the restaurant when I stayed there last year. That hotel also isn't located in the best place either as you have to walk through the T2 multi-storey car park to get to it.

I would imagine the Crowne Plaza / Holiday Inn Express as well las the Hilton T4 hotels have really really struggled since T4 was closed. I don't know but did those hotels got used as red list isolation hotels or not? I believe the Crowne Plaza was closed for at least 12 months. Not sure if the Yotel that's actually located inside T4 will re-open or not?

My LHR preferred hotels always was the T4 Crowne Plaza. I hate faffing around with the hotel hopper busses for off-site hotels these days at any airport!
#965071 by flyingfox
14 Jun 2022, 14:50
This was an update from VS Trade issued on the 1st June effectively ending the covid flexible booking policy for all new bookings from the 24th June 2022;

From the start of the pandemic we quickly adjusted our policies for flight and package holiday bookings to provide as much flexibility as possible for our customers, including unlimited fee-free changes, recognising that COVID-19 created uncertainty for international travel. The removal of all remaining UK travel restrictions in March 2022 and easing of requirements in most of our destinations means travel is much easier once again.

With these barriers to travel removed, we believe the time is right to ease the COVID-19 flexible booking policies for Virgin Atlantic Airways on all new bookings from 24 June 2022, and we’re providing advance notice of the change to support customers’ plans. We continue to help our customers book with confidence, with the ability to change plans if a customer tests positive for COVID-19 and previous flexible booking policies applicable based on the date of booking, but it’s also important that customers have adequate travel insurance.
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