The twice-weekly service will begin on June 12, 2012 and Virgin Atlantic Airways expects up to 94,000 customers to travel between London and Cancun...

Cancun will become Virgin Atlantic Airways’ 33rd destination, with the introduction of flights by the airline from London Gatwick Airport in June 2012.

The twice-weekly service will begin on June 12, 2012 and Virgin Atlantic Airways expects up to 94,000 customers to travel between London and Cancun in the first year. Customer will be able to book tickets to Cancun from mid-July and can already buy travel on Virgin Atlantic to the Mexican resort as part of a vacation package with Virgin Holidays.

Virgin Atlantic’s leisure network from London Gatwick already features nine long-haul destinations in the Caribbean and the United States. The carrier estimates that the new route will deliver approximately $25 million of tourism revenue to the Cancun market each year (based on the number of additional travelers to Mexico per year and the average price of a two-week holiday to Cancun, including spending money) and has the potential to create up to 650 jobs within Mexico’s aviation and tourism sectors.

Virgin Atlantic Airways Boeing 747-400 G-VWOW (named 'Cosmic Girl') lands at London Heathrow Airport

“We are so pleased to be launching flights to Cancun next year. Many customers have asked us to fly direct to this exciting destination over the years,” said Sir Richard Branson, president of Virgin Atlantic, speaking in Miami during the airline’s celebrations to mark the 25th anniversary of its Miami service.

“With its superb beaches, great hotels and cultural sites, tourism in Cancun is thriving. We believe that we can drive demand ever higher by providing great competition to our rivals with our award-winning product and service,” added Branson. “Cancun is one of the top five long-haul leisure destinations for UK travelers, so we are delighted to be able to add this route to network.”

The twice-weekly service will be operated by Boeing 747-400s offering three classes of service./ The aircraft will feature 14 Upper Class Suites, 58 Premium Economy seats and 379 Economy seats.

“We’re delighted to be increasing our Mexico product and are looking forward to supporting the new route by launching our first ever dedicated brochure to the country in July, featuring a wide range of hotels in Cancun and beyond,” said Amanda Wills, managing director of Virgin Holidays.

This addition to Virgin Atlantic’s leisure program follows its recent launch of Manchester-Las Vegas flights and the carrier’s recent introduction of new Airbus A330-300s on its London-Orlando route.

Virgin Atlantic currently flies to 32 destinations worldwide. The airline carried six million passengers in 2010 and has 39 long-haul aircraft in its fleet.

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