Cape Town – The race to make long-haul more
economically affordable has been stepped up a notch by Virgin Atlantic, who
have just announced plans for three new economy class options as part of a
wider multi-million pound investment into their offering.
While no specific date or pricing has been
confirmed as yet, other than stating the product offering would be available in
the ‘Spring of 2018’, passengers will be able to choose to fly ‘economy
delight, ‘economy classic’ or ‘economy light’ with the new offering,
Economy delight will include a 34-inch legroom
seat, free advanced seat assignment, and priority boarding/check in.
Economy classic will offer free seat assignment –
providing extra reassurance for families and groups that they can sit together,
says the airline.
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The new economy light ticket is set to be the most
affordable of the three and ideal for budget travellers
who only need their carry-on. Travel and Leisure notes this class will have to
pay an extra fee to check any bags.
The airline’s current policy allows economy
passengers to select their seats starting 24 hours before departure; Economy
Light ticket holders will have pre-assigned seating.
As part of its wider
investment plan passengers can also expect a personal USB charging point in
economy and with the option to use inflight wi-fi connectivity
The airline will also
be introducing 12 new Airbus A350-1000 aircraft will in 2019 – offering
unrivalled levels of comfort and reliability for customers – incorporating a new
economy cabin design.
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“All economy classes will offer a three-course meal, Wi-Fi, inflight entertainment and
excellent service regardless of the ticket type,” says the airline, including
with its joint venture
partner Delta's Basic Economy, Main Cabin, and Comfort+ seating.
“We’ll never compromise on excellent
service, industry leading food and drink and cutting edge inflight
entertainment – regardless of which economy ticket our customers are travelling
on, they’ll be able to enjoy all this onboard,” says Craig Kreeger, Chief Executive
of Virgin Atlantic.
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“We’re unveiling the biggest change to our economy cabin in over a decade – launching three new ways to fly, and a host of innovations on the ground and in the air as part of a wider £300 million investment in our customers. We know that one size doesn’t fit all, and from spring our customers can afford to be choosy and still travel in the UK’s leading economy cabin.”