Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the North
Phil Hopkins
Arts & Travel Editor
8:00 AM 17th December 2020

Virgin Atlantic Launches New ‘Manchester’ Route To Pakistan

Virgin Atlantic is ramping up operations from Manchester Airport with the launch of a new service between Manchester and Islamabad.

The new services will provide vital connectivity for the large Pakistani population living along the M62 corridor, in addition to serving growing demand for business and leisure travel.

The new route will operate on Virgin Atlantic's Boeing 787 offering the airline’s Upper Class, Premium and Economy Light, Classic and Delight cabins. Passengers can take advantage of over 1000 hours of in-flight entertainment, which includes a selection of Urdu films and TV programmes.

As well as flying customers, Virgin Atlantic will offer a fast, efficient cargo service growing trade volumes between exporters and importers in both the UK and Pakistan. The UK is the largest export market for Pakistan in Europe, transporting high volumes of goods such as textiles, apparel and machinery.

Juha Jarvinen, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Atlantic, said: “This is our first route launch since the Covid-19 pandemic, and it is an extremely important one for us as we look to reunite families and loved ones.

“Despite the challenges brought by Covid-19, our commitment to Manchester has never wavered. It’s an exciting time as demand gradually returns and we build up flying from the region. We’d like to thank the British High Commission for their support during our set up phase and also the Pakistani authorities for granting us the approvals to operate this route. We’re delighted that the authorities recognise the importance of this service, enabling vital connectivity between these two great cities”

Karen Smart, Managing Director of Manchester Airport, said:“The route will open up a wide range of benefits for the North, strengthening trade ties with Pakistan as well as helping to connect the more than 435,000* people of Pakistani heritage in the region with friends and relatives.”

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