Virgin Atlantic update - Flight disruptions due to severe weather in the UK - 19th December

Sunday 19, December 2010


Virgin Atlantic update - Flight disruptions due to severe weather in the UK - 19th December


The severe weather conditions have severely affected all flights in and out of the UK. Virgin Atlantic is working hard to re establish their flying programme and get the passengers on their way during this most critical time of year.


However as a result of the extended closure of London Gatwick, and particulary Heathrow runways throughout the weekend of 18th and 19th December a number of Virgin Atlantic aircraft are out of position and it will be 24-48 hours before their schedules are completely back to normal.


It is essential to check Flight Status for the latest information on their flight schedules before you travel to the airport. In addition please update your mobile phone details in My Booking in order for them to send text messages in the event of significant disruptions.




London Gatwick Airport: 

Gatwick airport has reopened and Virgin Atlantic is operating their full schedule of flights, albeit with some delays.


Manchester Airport: 

All the flights are operating as scheduled.


London Heathrow: 

Heathrow is not expected to reopen for flight arrivals until at least 23:59H on Sunday 19th December and therefore all inbound flights and all the departing flights are severely disrupted. Please check flight status before you go to the airport. Because the disruptions are so extensive the Heathrow infrastructure is under great pressure and therefore for safety reasons the terminal must be cleared of all passengers who are not travelling. Virgin Atlantic has also been advised that the access roads to the airport (which includes the tunnel) are closed to private vehicles therefore if passengers hold a confirmed booking on a flight that is definitely departing they should go to the airport by public transport i.e. tubes and busses.


Flight Diversions:

Some flights due to arrive in Gatwick and Heathrow on Saturday18th and Sunday 19th are diverted to other airports in the UK and Europe. Passengers who have landed in UK airports will be transferred by road when conditions allow, and Virgin Atlantic expect the aircraft diverted into non UK airports to return to the UK with their passengers on Sunday 19th or Monday 20 December.


If your flight has been cancelled or delayed overnight please do not travel to the airport.


For more information on rebooking options, claims and ticket refunds please view the customer relations pages.


Due to the very high call volumes Virgin Atlantic is experiencing much longer waiting times and their call holding capacity is full. The severe weather has impacted our UK contact centre staff resources and they therefore urge passengers to return home and call them after noon on Sunday 19th and Monday 20th to make new bookings. Passengers who booked through a travel agent should call them directly.



Virgin Atlantic is focussing all their energy on a recovery plan to bring people back home. Because so many aircraft are out of position it will be a little while before things are completely returned to normal. If they cannot rebook you on their flights departing within the next 3-4 days (rest assured they are also planning to operate extra flights as well as securing seats on other carriers where possible over the next few days) you will be asked to give them your contact details and they will be in touch with your new flight details as soon as we have them confirmed.


How they will contact stranded passengers to advise you of your new flight details?


Passengers who are on the return leg of their journey (ie away from home) should send them their details by email to, with the following details:


Your booking reference number. (It will be a 6 character with a mixture of numbers and letters e.g. BJVC1X)


Your 7 digit Virgin Holidays Reference number

Full names of all the passengers in your party

Your ORIGINAL date of departure

Your ORIGINAL flight number

Your current contact details 

- E mail 

- Mobile phone number 

- Land line i.e. hotel or other temporary accommodation 

- Address of temporary accommodation

You must provide us with at least one of these contact options, preferably two.


You will receive an automated acknowledgment to your e mail. Virgin Atlantic will not however send any further reply. They will contact you as son as they have your new flight details.


PLEASE NOTE - if you have already been re booked on a flight due to leave in the next 2 days i.e. up to and including Tuesday 22 December do not e-mail or call Virgin Atlantic with your details. They will not be able to bring you home any sooner so please check in for your new flight as usual.


Passengers who are away from home can reclaim reasonable hotel and meal costs. For information on how to make a claim for reimbursement of these costs along with rebooking options and ticket refunds please view our Customer Relations pages.



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