NEWS: Virgin changes route plans, BA to add new US Route? and BA Gatwick short haul routes

Bottom Bay, Barbados

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Virgin Atlantic changes some route plans

Virgin announced over the weekend that their Manchester to Barbados service will not continue into the summer schedule this year., Instead of will return in autumn 2022. The Manchester-Barbados service is currently operating four times per week and will continue until the end of the winter schedule season at the end of March. 

A spokesperson said, 

“We remain committed to serving this Caribbean route from our home in the north and expect to resume flights in autumn 2022 after the summer pause. We apologise for the inconvenience caused to affected customers due to travel in summer 2022 and will be contacting them in the coming days with their options, including the choice to convert their booking to a voucher, request a full refund, or rebook for a new travel date, to another destination if they wish, all the way up until 30 April 2023.”

Another Caribbean route has also been delayed from Manchester To Jamaica. Flights to Montego Bay should have started last week on 6 November. Restrictions are fairly tight for tourists in Jamaica at the moment meaning you have to stay at your hotel within the “tourist corridor” and can only leave by approved transport to approved venues and attractions. Due to this, the service will not start until autumn 2022.


BA to add new US Route?

Indianapolis Statehouse from Monument Circle

According to @toflytotravel, in the next round of slot bidding British Airways have put in for slots for a Heathrow to Indianapolis route from summer 2022. The information came from bids to ACL who are an independent airport slot coordinator at 46 airports worldwide.

I am slightly surprised by this given that some pre-covid routes are not back up and running at full strength yet. I would imagine this will mainly be a business route seeing as it’s home to three Fortune 500 companies, two major league sports clubs and four university campuses. For leisure there are several museums, including the world’s largest children’s museum but it’s best known for the world’s largest single-day sporting event, the Indianapolis 500.


British Airways Gatwick routes?

Alicante short break

Harbour of Alicante, Spain

Since BA announced the start of its Gatwick subsidiary EuroFlyer, there has been a lot of speculation of which routes would stay at Heathrow, which would disappear altogether, and which would be from Gatwick given that they are only planning on using 17 aircraft next summer at the airport. To most people, EuroFlyer will look and feel exactly the same as BA has always done. The name EuroFlyer is just for admin purposes, the aircraft wIll still look the same with the same service. 

@toflytotravel also noted that  BA has ‘cancelled’ slots for a number of destinations from Heathrow in summer 2022. This could mean that they will return to Gatwick, although of course, it could be that not all of them continue at all.

The routes that look like they could be from Gatwick are:

  • Alicante
  • Seville
  • Turin
  • Verona
  • Bilbao
  • Cagliari
  • Malta (boo I’m travelling there and much prefer Heathrow!)
  • Marrakesh
  • Bordeaux
  • Lanzarote
  • Antalya

8 Comments on "NEWS: Virgin changes route plans, BA to add new US Route? and BA Gatwick short haul routes"

  1. Boo indeed!! We also travel to Malta regularly and it has been SO nice for this to be out of Heathrow recently. Whilst we actually prefer the smaller FIRST lounge at Gatwick, getting there (for us) and the airport as a whole isn’t much fun.
    Also, considering how busy flights on the Malta route are at the moment (especially Club Europe), we’re disappointed and surprised to see BA reducing frequency in the coming weeks/months…

  2. Boo indeed for us but in reverse – short break to Naples and Heathrow not good for us!
    Came back into Gatwick Sunday afternoon from Geneva and no queues at all and all egates open.

    • I actually don’t mind the lounges at Gatwick but getting there is a pain for me and I usually find the arrivals experience slow though I think Heathrow has been worse in recent times!

  3. We have clearly been lucky as every time we’ve arrived into Heathrow recently (half a dozen times or so in the last few weeks) it’s been incredibly quick and easy at arrivals/immigration!

    • It’s very hit and miss. I’ve only had one long queue but many of my friends have been caught up in massive queues. E gates have failed a few times. Once they sort that out it should be a lot more consistent.

  4. Still no word about regional connections to Gatwick – or are these going to be flown by some of the 17 planes. The only way to get to Gatwick from Edinburgh at the moment is to use Easyjet, but if I’m to do that I might as well use them direct to my destination!

    • Yes it does seem like BA have forgotten Edinburgh as they have scheduled Manchester and Glasgow Gatwick flights for next summer. However it’s still early days with scheduling so hopefully they will include a few otherwise as you say if you have to use EasyJet you may as well stick with them the whole way.

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