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Pakistan

Virgin Atlantic to Launch New Flights to Pakistan

Virgin Atlantic is pleased to announce it will be launching flights to Pakistan.  Operating three new routes from London Heathrow…

Virgin Atlantic is pleased to announce it will be launching flights to Pakistan in December 2020.  Operating three new routes from London Heathrow to Lahore, London Heathrow to Islamabad, as well as from Manchester to Islamabad; these new services will go on sale in September 2020 subject to applicable regulatory approvals, and will boast Virgin Atlantic’s Upper Class, Premium and Economy Light, Classic and Delight offering.     

Pakistan has the seventh largest diaspora in the world and the new services aim to respond to the large, fast-growing demand to visit friends and relatives (VFR) from customers in the UK and the US, as well as capturing demand for business travel to the region as global economies gradually recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Adventurous travellers will enjoy the UNESCO sights of Lahore, as well as exploring the foothills of the Himalayas outside Islamabad.  

The services will offer seamless, speedy connections and a consistent long-haul onboard experience for customers travelling from destinations throughout North America, including New York JFK, Los Angeles, Washington, Boston and San Francisco via London Heathrow onwards to Pakistan. Connections from European destinations will also be available through codeshare and interline partners.   

As well as flying customers, Virgin Atlantic will offer a fast, efficient cargo service presenting new opportunities for companies looking to export an d import goods such as fresh produce and textiles between prime markets in the UK and US, and Pakistan.  

Juha Jarvinen, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Atlantic commented:

“With travel restrictions remaining in place for many destinations around the world, we’re continually evaluating our network, looking at customer demand and where there are opportunities to launch new services.”  

“Pakistan is an extremely exciting opportunity for us – it boasts one of the largest foreign-born populations in both the UK and the US and, as people start to travel to visit loved ones, we’re anticipating the demand  to visit friends and relatives will increase post COVID-19. Both Lahore and Islamabad are popular year-round destinations and we look forward to welcoming travellers onboard as demand for leisure and business travel gradually increases to the region”.   

“We also see a significant opportunity to increase competition in the US – Pakistan market. Using the strength of our trans-Atlantic services we’re able to offer customers the shortest journey to and from destinations in the US such as New York, Los Angeles and Washington by connecting through London Heathrow”.   

Gulf Air confirms the return of operations out of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan with resumption of direct flights from Islamabad International Airport.

Iuliia Tore