Virgin Atlantic Cargo to add more capacity to Johannesburg, Lagos by 2020
Virgin Atlantic will launch a new flying programme for 2020, which aims to provide additional capacity for cargo flying to India, Africa, and the United States.
November 20, 2019: Virgin Atlantic Cargo will launch a new flying programme for 2020, which aims to provide additional capacity for cargo flying to India, Africa, and the United States. By 2020, Virgin Atlantic Cargo will fly A350 aircraft to new destinations across its network. Its daily cargo flights will be debuted on routes such as Johannesburg, South Africa (March); Los Angeles, US (April), San Francisco, California (May); and Lagos, Nigeria (August).
Cargo customers will also benefit from Johannesburg becoming the first non-US route to debut Virgin Atlantic’s brand new A350. The aircraft is already significantly boosting cargo capacity on its current routing between London and New York.
Dominic Kennedy, managing director of Virgin Atlantic Cargo, noted, “These new routes and frequencies for summer 2020 are great news for our cargo customers. India, South Africa, and Nigeria are very important and growing routes for our cargo business, so our commitment to offering more capacity connecting customers in these countries to their prime UK and US markets will help to open up opportunities for more import and export growth.”
A second daily B787 service will be introduced by March 29 to Delhi Indira Gandhi Airport, India, departing from Heathrow, London in the morning and complementing the airline’s current evening departure. With the additional flight to Delhi, alongside newly-launched daily Mumbai service which commenced last month, summer 2020 will see Virgin Atlantic Cargo offer more choice to India to support its thriving import and export markets.
India shipped $323.1 billion worth of products around the globe in 2018, up 9.2 percent year-on-year, with the US and UK markets accounting for $51.6 billion and $9.8 billion of its exports, respectively. Virgin Atlantic’s B787-9 service offers up to 26 tonnes of cargo capacity on every flight, which from India includes high volumes of perishables, pharmaceuticals and courier shipments.
Juha Jarvinen, EVP Commercial at Virgin Atlantic, stated, “As we work to achieve our ambition to become the most loved travel company, we’re pleased to announce extra flights to some of our most popular destinations. Next year, it will mark twenty years since Virgin Atlantic started flying to Delhi, and the service continues to grow in popularity for both business and leisure travel. The second daily service from Heathrow is an excellent opportunity to meet customer demand on this route and, coupled with our new service to Mumbai, we’re able to offer even more choice and unrivalled Virgin Atlantic service to customers travelling between the UK and India.”
Transatlantic customers, including those with high volumes of e-commerce traffic, will also gain from the launch of an additional weekly service to San Francisco, departing every Friday, providing a choice of twice-daily flights between Heathrow and the Golden Gate City, Florida.
London-based Virgin Atlantic Cargo trades in 37 countries and sells services to destinations in over 60 countries worldwide. Alongside joint venture partner Delta Cargo, they operate a leading transatlantic network, offering a choice of 38 flights a day between the UK and US which, in 2018, carried over a quarter of total trans-Atlantic air cargo volumes.
In 2019, Virgin Atlantic Cargo’s volumes will benefit from a 22 percent increase in capacity provided by the delivery of the airline’s first A350-1000 aircraft as well as the launch of its new Tel Aviv route in September. Investment in new technologies will make the airline even easier to do business with; while in Q4 will see Virgin Atlantic Cargo and Delta Cargo move in a state-of-the-art cargo terminal, doubling the size of their joint Heathrow operation.