Virgin Atlantic delays the retirement of its A340 aircraft yet again

Oct 29, 2019

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Virgin Atlantic has extended the life of its aging Airbus A340-600 aircraft yet again, meaning some U.S. flyers on the airline may find themselves in a far older cabin than Virgin’s A330 and Boeing 787, and especially than the brand-new A350.

The carrier’s recent schedule update, spotted by RoutesOnline, mentions Virgin Atlantic has extended the service of its A340-600s until early January 2020.

The latest schedule update from Virgin Atlantic shows the A340-600 continuing service until January 5. Between November 7 and that date, the four-engined Airbus will operate on the following frequencies:

  • London Gatwick (LGW) to Bridgetown, Barbados (BGI) — December 7
  • London Heathrow (LHR) to Atlanta (ATL) — November 7 through January 5 (daily)
  • London Heathrow (LHR) to Lagos, Nigeria (LOS) — December 13 through December 28 (2x weekly, 3x weekly for the week of December 21)
  • London Heathrow (LHR) to New York (JFK)
    • VS45/VS46 until December 8
    • VS25/VS26 December 14 through December 28 (2x weekly)
  • Manchester (MAN) to Atlanta (ATL) — December 14 through December 21

As always with airline operations, the above schedules and frequencies are subject to change. If you’re booking one of these flights to try and get a last flight on the A346 before Virgin sends the planes into retirement, be sure to stay updated about the flight ops in the lead-up to your trip to make sure the aircraft isn’t swapped out.

In September, Virgin unveiled its plans to keep the four-engine aircraft in service until December. This delay in retirement is likely due to ongoing issues with the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines that the airline has on its 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft.

Featured photo by Loop Images/Getty Images

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