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Barbados on offer

Virgin Atlantic launches first overseas flights from capital

Preparing for take-off: Virgin Atlantic cabin crew in Edinburgh

Virgin Atlantic will be offering its first international flights from Edinburgh when it launches a direct link to Barbados and Orlando.

The flight to Barbados will be Scotland’s only direct service to the Caribbean and will launch on 5 December. Flights to Orlando will launch on 30 March 2022.

It is the first time Virgin Atlantic has flown international flights from Edinburgh in its 37-year history. The new Caribbean flights will operate twice weekly on an Airbus A330.  The Orlando flights will also be twice weekly, operating on an Airbus A330-200. 

Virgin Atlantic’s cargo offering will also be an advantage to firms looking to export goods from Scotland to the Caribbean and the US.

The announcement comes as Edinburgh Airport continues to focus on growing its cargo operation to help meet the Scottish Government’s exports targets and contribute to its plan for a more sustainable future for aviation in Scotland.

Gordon Dewar, chief executive of Edinburgh Airport, said: “A premier city like Edinburgh deserves premier airlines and we are extremely excited to welcome our newest partner Virgin Atlantic to Scotland’s capital city.

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“To be able to deliver flights to Barbados, Scotland’s only direct route to the Caribbean, and Orlando is a fantastic boost to us as we prepare for the post-Covid recovery, and it is a huge show of confidence in Edinburgh Airport’s ability to deliver for passengers across the country.

“We look forward to the new routes launching and watching passengers head off on the holiday of a lifetime from Edinburgh Airport with Virgin Atlantic.”

Juha Jarvinen, chief commercial officer at Virgin Atlantic, commented; “Commencing international flights from Edinburgh marks an exciting new chapter for Virgin Atlantic and we couldn’t be happier to be flying from a new home in Scotland. I know our teams are itching to show Edinburgh the Virgin Atlantic spirit and flair we’re famous for.  

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“Our two new routes provide an array of holiday options to suit everyone.  From family fun and the thrills of Orlando’s theme parks to the stunning beaches and chilled out vibes in Barbados, we’re confident there’s something to love for all of our Scottish customers.”  

Minister for Transport Graeme Dey said: “It is encouraging to see airlines develop their connectivity to Scotland at this time and I am sure this news will be welcomed by passengers.”  

Phil Brown, chief executive of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority, said “Safely returning to transatlantic international flights is our continuing goal and today’s announcement by our longtime partner Virgin Atlantic, offering service to Edinburgh, Scotland is a step in that direction.”

Virgin Atlantic will be joining its joint venture partner, Delta Air Lines, at its new home in Scotland.  Delta currently flies to both New York and Boston from the Scottish capital, with additional partners Air France KLM operating services to both Paris and Amsterdam.  

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