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Virgin Australia will dramatically boost the number of its Europe-bound codeshare flight options next year, with Singapore Airlines flights from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to twelve key European business destinations plus several cities in Asia.
Significantly, the European routes overlap those of Virgin Australia's other partner Etihad, a Virgin Australia spokesperson confirmed to Australian Business Traveller today.
This means travellers can choose to connect through either Singapore Changi with Singapore Airlines or Abu Dhabi with Etihad, while also earning Velocity Frequent Flyer points and enjoying perks of their Gold and Platinum status en route.
The new codeshares will cover:
- London - 4 daily, operated by A380 & 777-300ER
- Manchester - daily, operated by 777-300ER
- Paris - daily, operated by A380
- Barcelona - 5 weekly services, operated by 777-300ER
- Rome - 2 weekly services, operated by 777-200ER
- Milan - 5 weekly services, operated by 777-300ER
- Zurich - daily, operated by A380
- Munich - daily, operated by 777-300ER
- Frankfurt - double daily, operated by A380 and 777-300ER
- Amsterdam - daily, operated by 777-200ER
- Copenhagen - 3 weekly services, operated by 777-200ER
- Moscow - 5 weekly services, operated by 777-300ER
The new flights include Singapore Airlines planes with one of the best business classes in the sky, a fully flat bed with direct aisle access that's already on the Airbus A380 and Boeing 777-300ER jets.
And as Australian Business Traveller reported last week, SQ is also upgrading its older Boeing 777-200ER planes to that top-notch business class standard.
Virgin says the new codeshare services will come into effect in early 2013, and include flights from Australia's east coast. Virgin Australia's current SQ codeshares to Europe and the UK are restricted to Adelaide, Perth and Darwin so as not to overlap with the Etihad arrangement.
For its part, Singapore Airlines gains immediate codesharing to all of Virgin Australia’s domestic destinations and aims to include trans-Tasman flights between Australia and New Zealand destinations Dunedin, Queenstown and Wellington in the coming months.
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