JumboClassic
Topic Author
Posts: 314
Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2000 4:37 am

Virgin's Chicago Service

Thu Jul 20, 2000 11:31 pm

I have noticed recently that the daily VS 742 flight to ORD has been changed to A343 (the aircraft that they originally started the service with last year). Does anyone know the reason for that? Not high enough loads to support a 747?

Thanks.
Jumbo
 
KUGN
Posts: 606
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2000 4:36 am

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Thu Jul 20, 2000 11:58 pm

They used to advertise service to ORD on local radio, and I don't hear them anymore. Btw, the commercial was awful.

I've seen at ORD Virgin 742 lastr month, so this is something very new.
 
747firstclass
Posts: 821
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2000 2:45 pm

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Fri Jul 21, 2000 12:02 am

I was curious about that too. I asked at the ORD ticket counter when a friend of mine checked in for the flight. i was told that the aircraft was needed when Virgin started the LGW-LAS twice weekly service. In addition the other 5 days of the week is new SFO-LGW service. I was told all those flights were 747. But again who knows. However, when my friend came over on Virgin to ORD he said the flight was less than 50% full. Her said the same was true on the return from ORD-LHR. I find all this quite interesting as it is the peak summer travel season and all the planes are said to be full. So who knows what the real truth is.
 
CX747
Posts: 5580
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:54 am

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Fri Jul 21, 2000 1:00 am

I don't think that 747-200 operate into LAS for Virgin. I believe it is a 747-400. So, if I am correct the -200 would not be need for that route. Possibly another one?
"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
 
PresRDC
Posts: 512
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 1999 5:00 am

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Fri Jul 21, 2000 1:10 am

I am scheduled to fly Virign's ORD service in two weeks. I was told it would be a 747-200, but I guess I would not be notified if they made a change.
 
PresRDC
Posts: 512
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 1999 5:00 am

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Fri Jul 21, 2000 1:25 am

I just checked with Travelocity.com and the flights that I am scheduled to take have been changed to an A340-300.
 
JumboClassic
Topic Author
Posts: 314
Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2000 4:37 am

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Fri Jul 21, 2000 1:26 am

In two weeks, Aug 3rd, the ORD-LHR flight is scheduled to be A343. Interesting...

Do you know that Balkan Bulgarian is advertising $490 SOF-JFK round trip via LHR with Virgin (for the LHR-JFK flight)? Maybe they should offer the same for SOF-ORD.
 
ContinentalEWR
Posts: 3619
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 2:50 am

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Fri Jul 21, 2000 1:46 am

Virgin wants a second LHR-ORD flight so that it will improve its competitive
position against AA, UA, and BA, all of whom have multiple flights throughout
the day to Heathrow.

I wouldn't think VS will drop the route. It's valuable. The A340-300 is a newer
plane and perhaps they are tinkering with the equipment to accelerate the
aircraft refurbishment plan they apparently have fallen behind on.

Personally, I'd rather be in an A340 to ORD than a second hand 742.

ContinentalEWR
 
PresRDC
Posts: 512
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 1999 5:00 am

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Fri Jul 21, 2000 5:52 am

I've noticed that the times for Virgin's Chicago service are not that great. The flight leaves LHR at 10:30 am and get into ORD at 1:10 pm local time. The return flight leaves at 5:00pm, which must make it harder to attract business people who are more likely to want to maximize their work time. Although they are likely constrained by gate and slot availability at both airports, it seems that the flight would more successful if it left Chicago at around 7:30 pm (the same time as the earliest evening JFK-LHR runs) and left LHR at around 2:00 pm. That way, someone could work a full day in Chicago or work a half day in London. I would agree that Virign might be more attractive to business travelers if they had a second daily flight.

Just my thoughts on the apparently light load factors.
 
mel
Posts: 1042
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 1999 5:13 am

RE: Virgin's Chicago Service

Fri Jul 21, 2000 2:09 pm

LHR-ORD is a route that is flown with a variety of aircraft. Earlier on in the year I was in ORD for two days. One day they flew in G-VPUF, the second day they flew in G-VSKY. So the schedule changes all the time on the ORD route. This happens on the IAD route aswell. The 744 is flown in 3/4 of the time, the 742, the other 1/4 of the time. VS has also started LHR-DEL service. Sometimes that is a 742, sometimes a 744. So this may also mess up the LHR-ORD route aswell. Don't forget that planes are slowly being painted into the new c/s so some substitutions of different planes will take place on some routes. For instance, temporarily, it looks like a 742 has been deployed on one of the LHR-JFK routes. So the schedule on LHR-ORD is always subject to change.
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