V Australia has announced daily direct Los Angeles – Sydney flights as its inaugural trans Pacific route when it takes to the skies from 15 December 2008. A second route from Los Angeles to Brisbane will begin operating three times a week starting March 1, 2009*.
V Australia will be the only airline operating on the trans-Pacific to offer the latest in-flight technology connectivity throughout all cabins so guests will be able to send and receive SMS text messages, as well as send and receive emails using GPRS devices such as BlackBerrys® and mobile phones exactly as they are used on the ground.
Sir Richard Branson said, “The trans-Pacific route is in dire need of competition and a good shake-up and that’s a challenge we are always keen to take on.” Sir Richard Branson added, “We’re not just launching a new route and a new destination, it’s our first route as we launch a new international airline for Australia, and the launch of V Australia also means the Virgin Group for the first time will offer a global network of airlines that allow travelers to fly worldwide on Virgin airlines’ that all share the same vision and commitment to safety, service, fun and flair.” Los Angeles-Sydney was chosen as the first route for V Australia due to both Sydney and Los Angeles being major gateway cities in both countries. In the United States, passengers will be able to connect to or from Northwest Airlines, the first US based airline to partner with V Australia Airlines and the fifth largest airline in the world.
In Australia, Virgin Blue’s Sydney hub will offer a host of connecting options from V Australia, starting with Virgin Blue’s domestic destinations and expanding to include connections to Pacific Blue flights to New Zealand and the South Pacific.
Virgin Blue Chief Executive, Brett Godfrey, said “We are proud as an Australian airline to be bringing a new, contemporary and passionate airline to the trans-Pacific market that will bring genuine competition and a fresh alternative for travelers.” Virgin Blue International Airlines Senior Vice President Sales, Mathias Friess, said “We are excited to be linking the City of LA directly with Brisbane, the second Australian destination to be added to the V Australia network. Importantly, this new flight will also provide another direct link from Los Angeles to Australia, equating to approximately 1000 additional seats per week in the market from Brisbane alone, which will increase visitors to North America and help to boost business and tourism opportunities”.