Starting on Wednesday, Virgin Atlantic said it will re-introduce seasonal daily flights between Chicago and the U.K. to better serve the burgeoning Midwest market in the United States. The new service, using A330-300 aircraft, will connect Chicago O’Hare International Airport with London Heathrow and add 16 tonnes of belly capacity each day.
The added service, comes after Virgin Atlantic had added year-round daily London-Detroit service last year, providing faster and more connections via the U.K. to other key markets in Europe, India and South Africa.
With daily service to both Chicago and Detroit, the new routes “enabled us to strengthen our year-round presence in the U.S. Midwest, where are have very strong support from our customers on both sides of the Atlantic,” said John Lloyd, Virgin’s senior vice president of cargo. “From the U.K., even before the start of our summer season services to Chicago, we have commitments for more than 50 percent of our capacity.”
With the Detroit flight arriving at Heathrow at 6:30 a.m. and the new Chicago flight following at 7:55, the early arrivals will allow for same-day connections to India and South Africa, Lloyd said. In addition, Virgin’s road feeder services will send commodities by truck to more than 50 cities in Europe. Typical commodities that will be carried on the U.S. routes will include fresh fish, flowers and other perishables, as well as mail.
Starting tomorrow, Virgin Atlantic Cargo will offer direct links to 12 U.S. destinations, including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Newark, Orlando, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.