Virgin America Brings A Breath Of Fresh Airline To Philadelphia
San Francisco — January 17, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Virgin America, the California-based airline that is reinventing domestic travel, announces it will bring its low-fare, upscale service to Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) later this year, with tickets on sale today for three daily nonstop flights from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) starting April 4, 2012, and two daily nonstop flights from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) starting April 10, 2012.
Known for its outstanding guest service, beautifully-designed cabins and unparalleled in-flight entertainment, Virgin America has swept the major travel awards since its launch in August 2007. Most recently, the airline took top honors as “Best U.S. Airline” in both Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards and Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards. In honor of its newest city, Virgin America is also launching a system-wide “The City of Brotherly Love: Just Got Lovelier” fare sale, with PHL-LAX fares from $129* and PHL-SFO fares from $149* (restrictions, taxes and fees applying). Tickets are available for purchase now at www.virginamerica.com and at 1.877.FLY.VIRGIN.**
“When more airlines compete, consumers win — with lower fares and better service. Travelers deserve more options than just the typical legacy airline cattle car, and we hope our unique brand of low fares and inventive service will be a breath of fresh air for Philadelphians,” said Virgin America President and Chief Executive Officer David Cush. “In addition to being a historic and vibrant city, this market has strong business and leisure travel connections to California — and we thank both Mayor Nutter and Philadelphia International airport officials for welcoming our new service.”
At a time when most airlines are cutting capacity, Virgin America will bring much needed nonstop competition from California’s largest airports to PHL. Currently, only legacy carriers serve the West Coast-PHL routes nonstop. When entering markets that offer little low-fare competition, Virgin America has historically seen fares drop by up to one-third. In addition, 50 percent of travelers flying from PHL to the Los Angeles market now use connecting flights and 45 percent of those traveling from PHL to the San Francisco Bay Area are connecting passengers.
“This is a great development for the entire Philadelphia region, including northern Delaware, southern New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania,” said Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter. “New airline service not only lowers fares for travelers, but it is also a major economic driver — stimulating business travel, tourism and local job growth. Virgin America’s new flights also validate the strong and growing business travel link between our region’s innovation-based sectors and those on the West Coast.”
The Philadelphia region, including northern Delaware, southern New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania, is home to a robust pharmaceutical industry and is an important East Coast hub for biotechnology R&D. Virgin America’s WiFi-enabled flights will provide more options for business travelers who commute from PHL to Silicon Valley and Southern California.
“Virgin America is a dynamic, innovative airline that offers quality service to today’s air traveler,” said Rina Cutler, Deputy Mayor, Transportation and Utilities. “We are very excited that our airport customers will now have convenient access to this industry-acclaimed carrier.”
Virgin America’s new aircraft offer custom-designed mood-lit cabins, fleetwide WiFi, power outlets and the most advanced in-flight entertainment in the skies. Guests on Virgin America enjoy their own touch-screen entertainment platform with: 35 films, live TV, Google Maps, videogames, seat-to-seat chat, music videos, a 3000 song library, an on-demand menu and more. In addition to a Main Cabin that offers leather seating with a deeper, more comfortable pitch, the airline’s First Class offers plush white leather seating with 55 inches of pitch, 165 degrees of recline and lumbar massagers. The carrier’s Main Cabin Select option offers 38-inches of pitch, free food and cocktails, an all-access pass to media, dedicated overhead bins and priority check-in/boarding.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Virgin America to Philadelphia,” said Philadelphia International Airport Chief Executive Officer Mark Gale. “Philadelphia travelers will undoubtedly benefit from the increased competition — both through lower fares and the airline’s award-winning service. Today is truly a great day for the entire Philadelphia region.”
The PHL announcement was first shared with the carrier’s social media fans earlier today, via a video that spotted the beloved and mysterious ‘Greenman’ from the FX television show “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” near a Virgin America aircraft. Visitors to the airline’s Facebook page can now enter for a chance to win*** roundtrip flights and the ultimate “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” fan pack, consisting of Seasons 1-6 DVDs, a Paddy’s Pub t-shirt, the official board game and a guide to the characters’ favorite haunts. “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” the critically acclaimed hit comedy on FX, will enter its eighth season this fall.
PHL is the latest expansion for the growing carrier. In just over four years flying, the airline has expanded to 17 destinations (including PHL) and has created 2,200 new jobs. As one of the few growing U.S. carriers, the airline has launched service to Cancun, Chicago, Puerto Vallarta and Palm Springs in the past 12 months alone.
Connecting flights will also be available from PHL to Virgin America’s San Diego, Seattle and Las Vegas destinations.
Virgin America flies to San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington D.C., Seattle, Las Vegas, San Diego, Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Dallas-Fort Worth, Los Cabos, Cancun, Chicago, Puerto Vallarta, Palm Springs and as of April 4th – Philadelphia.
EDITORS NOTE: Virgin America is a U.S.-controlled, owned and operated airline. It is an entirely separate company from Virgin Atlantic. Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group is a minority share investor in Virgin America.
About Virgin America: Headquartered in California, Virgin America offers guests attractive fares and a host of innovative features aimed at reinventing air travel. In just over four years flying, Virgin America was named “Best Domestic Airline” in the Condé Nast Traveler 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 ‘Readers’ Choice’ Awards and “Best Domestic Airline” in Travel + Leisure’s 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 ‘World’s Best’ Awards. The airline’s base of operations is San Francisco International Airport (SFO)’s sleek and sustainable new Terminal 2. The airline’s new aircraft offer interactive in-flight entertainment systems and power outlets near every seat. Virgin America offers Gogo™ WiFi on every flight and hosts the largest in-flight entertainment library in the North American skies via the touch-screen Red™ platform. For more: www.virginamerica.com
About FX: FX is the flagship general entertainment basic cable network from Fox. Launched in June of 1994, FX is carried in more than 98 million homes. The diverse schedule includes a growing roster of critically acclaimed and award-winning hit drama series including Sons of Anarchy, Justified and American Horror Story, and acclaimed hit comedy series It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The League, Louie, Archer and Wilfred. Its library of acquired box-office hit movies is unmatched by any ad-supported television network. The network’s other offerings include the acquired hit series Two and a Half Men and How I Met Your Mother, and live sports with college football and the UFC.
*Fare Terms and Conditions: All Main Cabin fares are one-way and require a 14-day advance purchase. Travel must occur between April 4, 2012 and June 15, 2012 for PHL-LAX and between April 10, 2012 and June 15, 2012 for PHL-SFO. Blackout dates are April 6, April 9, May 25, and May 28, 2012. Tickets must be purchased by 11:59 pm CST January 20, 2012. Fares do not include Passenger Facility Charges of up to $9 each way, the September 11th Security Fee of up to $5 each way and a Federal Segment Tax of $3.80 per domestic segment. A segment is a takeoff and landing. Seats are limited, subject to availability, and may not be available on all flights. Flights may not operate daily. Changes or cancellations can be made for a $75 fee if changes are made on Virgin America’s website (www.virginamerica.com) or a $100 fee through all other channels, including the call center and at the airport, plus any increase in fare, if applicable. Changes or cancellations of a booking made with Elevate Points will be subject to a $75 redeposit fee. Guests who no-show without a change or cancellation prior to the scheduled departure time will forfeit the amount of this fare. In addition, any future flights booked in the same reservation will also be canceled and the fare will be forfeited. Tickets purchased from Virgin America through our reservation call center will cost an additional $20 per guest per itinerary. Any added cost associated with purchasing tickets from Virgin America through our reservation call center will be non-refundable. Fares will not be honored retroactively or in exchange for any wholly or partially used ticket. Fares, routes, fees and schedules are subject to change without notice. Virgin America will accept one (1) piece of checked baggage up to 50 pounds for $25 for each ticketed guest traveling within the U.S. The fee per guest for each additional checked bag up to 50 pounds from the second (2) to the tenth (10) is $25. Additional fees apply to baggage exceeding these weight limitations, and other baggage restrictions may apply.
**Any guest calling within the United States has access to a complimentary telecommunication relay service by dialing 711. For more information, go to: http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/hearing/telecomm.asp.
***NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Legal residents of the 50 United States (D.C.), 18 years or older who did not purchase any equipment for purposes of entering the Contest. Ends: January 31, 2012. For Official Rules, visit http://vgn.am/PHLrules. To enter or to find out more, including prize description, visit: http://vgn.am/flyPHL. Void where prohibited.