Virgin Atlantic launching Delhi and Mumbai from Manchester whilst Vistara boosts Heathrow
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Virgin Atlantic is turning its gaze to India after announcing new routes to neighbouring Pakistan in August.
It will launch two new routes from Manchester. Service to Mumbai will start on the 19th December with a thrice weekly service. Delhi follows a few weeks later on the 5th January with two weekly flights.
Launching new routes in the middle of a pandemic may seem counter-intuitive at first, but it fits into Virgin’s strategy of diversifying away from the US whilst travel bans remain in place.
Leisure travel – including visiting friends and relatives – is also one of the first segments predicted to rebound in aviation. With an Indian diaspora of over half a million in the north of England, according to Virgin, this seems like a sensible move. There are currently no direct flights between India and Manchester by any airline.
Flights will go on sale from 20th October.
Remember that Virgin Atlantic continues to offer free Covid-19 insurance cover to passengers – see their website here.
How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (June 2023)
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):
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 13th June, the sign-up bonus on the Virgin Atlantic Reward+ card is doubled to 30,000 Virgin Points. Apply here.
Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard
30,000 points bonus (to 13th June) and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review
Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard
A generous earning rate for a free card at 0.75 points per £1 Read our full review
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.
American Express Preferred Rewards Gold
Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review
The Platinum Card from American Express comes with 30,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 30,000 Virgin Points.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 13th June, the sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card is doubled to 60,000 Membership Rewards points (worth 60,000 Virgin Points) – and you get £200 to spend at Amex Travel too! Apply here.
The Platinum Card from American Express
60,000 points AND a £200 Amex Travel voucher until 13th June! Read our full review
Small business owners should consider the two American Express Business cards. Points convert at 1:1 into Virgin Points.
American Express Business Platinum
40,000 points bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review
American Express Business Gold
20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn 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.)
Vistara expands London Heathrow to Delhi service
Speaking of Delhi, Indian carrier Vistara will be running a daily service from Heathrow to Delhi from 1st December.
Flights currently operate four days per week, rising to five per week from 21st November. Services are operated using a modern Boeing 787-9.
You can find out more on the Vistara website here.
Tomorrow we will cover SpiceJet’s UK launch.