Trans-Atlantic travel restart means the world to Virgin Atlantic, says boss
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LONDON – The reopening of the United States to British travellers will help all airlines operating between the two countries, but for UK-based trans-Atlantic-focused Virgin Atlantic, it means "the world," its chief executive said.
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"Virgin would not be Virgin without the Atlantic," CEO Shai Weiss said in an interview. "This is the market that is at the heart of everything that we do."
Virgin Atlantic, founded by billionaire Richard Branson, is 51% owned by Branson's Virgin Group with the balance held by Delta Air Lines.
AIRLINE FLIGHT BOOKINGS JUMP AFTER US EASES TRANSATLANTIC TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS
In 2020, it came close to collapse as COVID-19 travel bans hammered business. Pre-pandemic it had depended on trans-Atlantic travel for as much as 70% of its revenues.
The last of those bans ends on Monday when the United States reopens for fully vaccinated UK travellers. Since August, Virgin has also benefited from the UK opening to vaccinated U.S. citizens.