(They also had this rather fetching window display of red high-heeled shoes, should that sort of thing appeal to you!)
At six flights per day, the Edinburgh service looks like the most useful of the three new routes (Manchester will only be three flights per day, Aberdeen I think the same.)
Here are a few facts I picked up:
The departure times to EDI are well spread (06.45, 09.10, 11.20, 15.15, 16.25, 19.50)
Flights, as we know, will be from Terminal 1 and so requiring a transfer if you are joining a Virgin Atlantic long-haul flight from Terminal 3
The Upper Class chauffeur service WILL be available in Edinburgh if you are connecting to an Upper Class flight (full fare ticket) in London. This was the first time I had heard this. I’m not sure if Manchester and Aberdeen will offer the same deal.
Virgin Flying Club members will earn 750 miles per sector (at least to EDI) – so 50% more than the basic British Airways Executive Club earning rate
Redemptions via Virgin Flying Club will cost 7,500 miles return (at least to EDI). This is less than the 9,000 Avios required, but I assume Virgin requires you to pay full taxes rather than the £30 Reward Flight Saver deal offered by Avios.
The flights will be one-class
Upper Class passengers connecting in Heathrow will get access to a lounge at Edinburgh and Heathrow Terminal 1. There was no mention of lounge access for Silver or Gold members of Virgin Flying Club.
There was no mention of whether these flights earn Tier Points in Virgin Flying Club, but this page on the website shows that you will earn 1 point per segment. This means that 20 return domestic flights will get you Virgin Flying Club Gold – which, assuming they join the SkyTeam alliance – will have some value.
The first Edinburgh flight is April 5th.
The minimum connecting time for transferring to another flight (Virgin or another operator) will be 75 minutes at both Heathrow and Edinburgh.
I am hoping to try out the Virgin domestic services for a mini trip-report during April – although the flight times don’t make it easy (unless I do an immediate turn-around). I’m also not keen on digging out my Priority Pass to access the Servisair Lounge in Heathrow Terminal 1!
How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (September 2022)
As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Virgin Points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.
You can choose from two official Virgin Atlantic credit cards (apply here, the Reward+ card has a bonus of 15,000 Virgin Points):
You can also earn Virgin Points from various American Express cards – and these have sign-up bonuses too.
American Express Preferred Rewards Gold is FREE for a year and comes with 20,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 20,000 Virgin Points.
The Platinum Card from American Express comes with 30,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 30,000 Virgin Points.
EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.
Small business owners should consider the two American Express Business cards. Points convert at 1:1 into Virgin Points.
(Want to earn more Virgin Points? Click here to see our recent articles on Virgin Atlantic and Flying Club and click here for our home page with the latest news on earning and spending other airline and hotel points.)