More flights on India-UK route from December; Vistara to have a daily & Virgin Atlantic to link Manchester


NEW DELHI: Come December and India-UK connectivity, under the air bubble formed between the two countries, will get a big boost. Vistara, which currently flies four times a week on Delhi-London Heathrow route, will first increase the frequency to five from November 21 and then make it a daily flight from December 1.
SpiceJet will begin its twice weekly Delhi-London and once a week Mumbai-Heathrow from December 4. And, Virgin Atlantic will start two new routes — Mumbai-Manchester from December 20 and Delhi-Manchester from January 6, 2021. These are in addition to the flights currently being operated by Air India, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic on India-UK route.
Vistara’s winter schedule timings for the Delhi-London flights change from October 25 with the flight leaving India at 1.45 pm, reaching Heathrow at 5.45 pm same day. From London, the flight in winter will take off 8.50 pm, reaching Delhi at 10.25 am next day. (All timings local).
Vistara chief commercial officer Vinod Kannan said, “The increase in frequency demonstrates our success on the Delhi-London route, its importance in our network, and the steady demand for a full-service carrier from India.” Vistara operated Delhi-London with its onboard WiFi-enabled Boeing 787 Dreamliners.
Virgin Atlantic’s Mumbai-Manchester will be thrice weekly and Delhi-Manchester twice a week and add to the airline’s existing services from Mumbai and Delhi to London Heathrow.
The airline’s chief commercial officer Juha Jarvinen said: “Following the relaunch of services from Heathrow to Mumbai and Delhi in September 2020, these new services from Manchester represent our continued investment in India.” Country manager (India) Alex McEwan said the airline will be flying from Manchester to Delhi and Mumbai for the first time. It will deploy Dreamliners on this route.
Explaining the importance of the India-UK market, Virgin Atlantic said in a statement: “With over 1.6 crore Indians living outside of the country and 5 lakh living across the north of England, India has the world’s largest diaspora. These new services will open up over 1.3 lakh seats between India and Manchester and aim to respond to the large, fast-growing demand to visit friends and relatives as well as capturing demand for business and leisure travel to the region as global economies gradually recover from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.”



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