Virgin Atlantic’s London to Mumbai flight details
Virgin Atlantic will be launching daily flights between London Heathrow and Mumbai as of October 27, 2019. Flights are on sale as of today, so scroll down to find out how to redeem miles on this route.
This announcement marks a service resumption, as the airline canceled their Mumbai route about four years ago. It also marks Virgin Atlantic doubling their capacity to India, given that they currently only fly to Delhi.
Virgin Atlantic intends to use a Boeing 787-9 for the Mumbai route, featuring 258 seats. This includes 31 Upper Class seats, 35 premium economy seats, and 192 economy seats.
Virgin Atlantic’s 787-9 Upper Class
This flight covers a distance of ~4,500 miles in each direction, and is blocked at 8hr55min eastbound and 10hr10min westbound.
The schedule for the flight will be as follows:
London to Mumbai departing 10:15AM arriving 12:40AM (+1 day)
Mumbai to London departing 2:55AM arriving 7:35AM
Competition in the London to Mumbai market
While London to Mumbai is a big market, a big motivator for Virgin Atlantic here is that Jet Airways ceased operations a few weeks ago, and they operated several daily flights between London and Mumbai. So if there has ever been a time to start this route, this is it.
Virgin Atlantic will be going head-to-head against British Airways’ twice daily flights and Air India’s once daily flights.
Virgin Atlantic’s EVP of Commercial said the following regarding this route:
“2019 marks a significant period of growth for Virgin Atlantic and I’m delighted that we’re continuing to expand our route network once more, by returning to Mumbai. Until recently we’ve been able to serve this important market through our partnership with Jet Airways, however, since Jet Airways has sadly suspended its operation, we now have an opportunity to provide alternative options for our customers and meet this demand.
Combined with our long-standing route to Delhi, we’re able to provide travellers even more opportunity to experience our award winning service between the UK and India. Not only are we providing an increased offering to the thriving Indian market, but together with our partners at Delta, we can offer unrivalled choice and more seamless connections to the USA via Heathrow Airport.”
Redeeming miles on Virgin Atlantic’s Mumbai flight
Virgin Atlantic’s new flight to Mumbai is now bookable, and award seats are wide open. For example, I see award seats available almost every day, and many flights even have four Upper Class award seats.
Virgin Atlantic’s pricing is reasonable, as you can book an Upper Class seat from London to Mumbai for just 37,500 Flying Club miles, which is quite a good deal. The catch is that there are significant taxes, fees, and carrier imposed surcharges.
That’s a much better deal than booking through Delta SkyMiles, as they charge 75,000 miles for the same flight.
However, if you’re coming from the US, it could be a better deal to book through Delta. For example, you can redeem 85,000 Flying Club miles for a ticket from New York to London to Mumbai, though taxes, fees, and carrier imposed surcharges are $550+.
Meanwhile you could book the same ticket through Delta for 95,000 SkyMiles, but there are no carrier imposed surcharges, so you’d save over $500.
Seeing Virgin Atlantic double service to India is awesome. It’s great to see Virgin Atlantic expand destinations beyond just transatlantic routes where they have a joint venture with Delta.
This is an exciting time of growth for Virgin Atlantic, especially as the airline is soon also taking delivery of their first of 12 Airbus A350-1000 aircraft, which will feature their new Upper Class seats.
Virgin Atlantic’s new A350-1000 Upper Class
What do you make of Virgin Atlantic’s new route to Mumbai?