Virgin Atlantic has announced plans to resume passenger flights in July, with limited services from Heathrow to the US, Hong Kong and Shanghai. Flights to Orlando and Hong Kong will launch on July 20, with New York JFK, Los Angeles and Shanghai restarting the following day.
All flights will operate from Heathrow Terminal 2 since Terminal 3 is currently closed.
Virgin said flights will be loaded into its reservations systems over the next two weeks, and the airline said it is planning to announce the resumption of service to other destinations in August.
“As countries around the world start to relax travel restrictions, Virgin Atlantic will resume some routes on July 20, while steadily increasing passenger flying throughout the second half of 2020, with a further, gradual recovery through 2021 in line with customer demand,” the airline said in a statement.
Passengers will encounter some new health and safety measures, the airline said, including a personal Health Pack for passengers containing “medical grade face masks as a requirement to be worn onboard, surface wipes and hand gel.”
In addition, Virgin Atlantic will be carrying out health questionnaires before check-in, according to Corneel Koster, chief customer officer, adding that the airline was “calling upon airport and health authorities to put temperature checks in place as part of a multi-layered, end-to-end health screen.”
Meanwhile Juha Jarvinen, Virgin’s chief commercial officer, advised customers that travel in the time of COVID-19 makes for a fluid situation. “Our planned first flights will be to Orlando and Hong Kong on July 20. However, we are monitoring external conditions extremely closely, in particular the travel restrictions many countries have in place including the 14 day quarantine policy for travelers entering the UK.