Virgin Atlantic has forged announced a new codeshare pact with Middle East Airlines (MEA) offering connections between the US and Beirut via Heathrow.
Passengers flying with the UK carrier can travel between US airports such as Boston, New York JFK and Los Angeles and Beirut, connecting seamlessly between the two airlines at Heathrow Terminal 3 with a single booking reference and check-in.
Virgin Atlantic chief commercial officer Juha Jarvinen said: “We’re delighted to launch this codeshare partnership with MEA Middle East Airlines-Air Liban. As we recover from the pandemic, partnerships are more important than ever, and we look forward to building on the incredibly successful interline relationship we have had in place for a number of years.
“With a large diaspora population of Lebanese living in the US, this new partnership aims to respond to the large, fast-growing demand to visit friends and relatives as people start to travel to visit their loved ones post-Covid-19.
“We also expect to capture demand for business and leisure travel to the vibrant city of Beirut as travel restrictions begin to relax and global economies gradually recover from the pandemic.”
MEA head of commercial strategy and alliances Walid Abillama added: “Our interline relationship with Virgin Atlantic was the first to target the US travel market to Beirut, and so it is natural for us to partner with Virgin Atlantic and build the first US codeshare agreement targeting Beirut.
“We are hopeful that this partnership will reintegrate Beirut within the global economy as a post-Covid-19 travel destination and will maintain its promise of resilience.”