Virgin Atlantic US bookings ‘up 600% overnight’ on travel ban lifting

Bookings to the US rose by more than 600% compared to the same time last week on the announcement of the removal of the transatlantic travel ban on fully vaccinated travellers from the UK, Virgin Atlantic claimed.

Would-be-travellers were boosted by the Biden administration’s announcement on Monday that the ban would be lifted from November.   

New York had the most bookings of any US city overnight. 

The airline’s leisure destinations were also performing well, with Orlando flights up 11-fold, Miami nine-fold and Las Vegas eight-fold.     

Flights to the Caribbean have risen 50% week-on-week, with its newest route to St Vincent and The Grenadines, set to launch on October 13, becoming the most booked. 

Barbados follows closely behind, with bookings for both October half-term and the Christmas break proving the most popular time to visit. Bookings to both Jamaica and St Lucia have also doubled.   

Interest in routes popular among those visiting friends and relatives also remain strong. 

Bookings to Pakistan increased by nearly 300%, following its removal from the red list with flights from London to India almost doubling.

The simplification of rules on international travel, including the scrapping of expensive PCR tests for the fully vaccinated,  are already having a significant impact on consumer confidence, resulting in a surge in demand across Virgin Atlantic’s route network.   

Chief commercial officer Juha Jarvinen said: “Following the gradual relaxation of travel restrictions, we’ve seen demand increase to many of our global destinations, but the USA has always been our heartland.  

“We are simply not Virgin without the Atlantic and I’m thrilled we’re finally able to return to the country that’s so important to us.  We’ve missed flying our customers to the USA and we can’t wait to welcome them back on board for their American adventures soon.”   

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