News

Delta and Virgin create US-UK shuttle service

23 Sep 2013 by Tom Otley

Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic have been granted antitrust immunity by the US Department of Transportation.

The decision clears the way for the carriers' joint venture on routes between North America and the UK.

As revealed by Business Traveller in May, the airlines have created a new schedule for New York to London "designed with business travellers in mind".

The new schedule offers nine daily nonstop flights from March 30, 2014 and is available for booking from October 5.

The new schedule will include departures every 30 minutes during the early evening peak and then hourly until 2230 from New York JFK to London Heathrow and a spread of seven daily flights from LHR to JFK, including two late afternoon and early evening departures.

Those services will be complemented by two daily nonstop flights between New York's Newark airport and London Heathrow.

New York (JFK) – London (LHR)

 

London (LHR) – New York (JFK)

Depart

Airport

Depart Time

Arrival Airport

Arrival Time

Depart Airport

Depart Time

Arrival Airport

Arrival Time

JFK

07:40

LHR

19:40

LHR

09:05

JFK

11:50

JFK

18:30

LHR

06:50*

LHR

10:15

JFK

13:15

JFK

19:00

LHR

07:20*

LHR

11:30

JFK

14:25

JFK

19:30

LHR

08:00*

LHR

14:00

JFK

16:40

JFK

20:30

LHR

08:45*

LHR

16:15

JFK

19:05

JFK

21:30

LHR

09:25*

LHR

17:35

JFK

20:30

JFK

22:30

LHR

10:40*

LHR

20:05

JFK

23:00

*arrives the following day

The two airlines say they will work together "to co-ordinate other schedule and network opportunities".

Combined, they will operate a total of 32 daily nonstop flights between North America and the UK, of which 24 flights will operate between Heathrow and the US, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Atlanta and Washington.

Interviewed shortly before the news emerged, Willie Walsh, chief executive of IAG, parent company of British Airways and Iberia said that the (then-proposed, now-approved) Virgin and Delta joint business made the airlines "more attractive particularly to the US corporate market".

Walsh went on to warn that "the airline that potentially will lose out in that will be United who don't have a partner in Heathrow, who have clearly struggled to cement their merger [with Continental] and have reduced their presence in Heathrow."

Delta and Virgin Atlantic said they will unveil further product enhancements later in the year, to appeal to the business customer and improve the travel experience of customers across the Atlantic.

virgin-atlantic.comdelta.com

Tom Otley

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