VIRGIN AMERICA RANKS NO. 1 IN TRAVEL + LEISURE’S WORLD’S BEST AWARDS
Airline Takes Top Honors from Readers as Best Domestic Airline in one of the Largest and Most Respected Independent Surveys Virgin America Launches Seven-Hour “Winning Streak” Fare Sale to Thank Flyers and Celebrate Its Fourth Consecutive Year Win
San Francisco – July 7, 2011 – Virgin America, the California-based airline that is reinventing travel, today took the top honors for the fourth consecutive year as “Best Domestic Airline” in the prestigious Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards readers’ survey. The annual Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards highlight the results of an impartial survey that captures the independent opinions of Travel + Leisure readers on their favorite travel experiences.* In this 16th annual reader’s survey, airlines were rated independently by Travel + Leisure readers in four categories, including: cabin comfort, in-flight service, customer service and value. The award results, including Virgin America’s fourth consecutive year “Best Domestic Airline” win, were profiled on NBC’s TODAY Show this morning and are currently featured onwww.TravelandLeisure.com/worldsbest.
To thank its loyal flyers and celebrate its fourth consecutive year win, the airline today launches a seven-hour “Winning Streak” fare sale for travel between August 23, 2011 and October 5, 2011. Main Cabin seven-hour “Winning Streak” fares start as low as $44** with restrictions, taxes and fees applying. Tickets must be purchased today (July 7) between 9:01am PT and 3:59pm PT. Tickets are on sale today and can be purchased at Virgin America’s Web site (www.virginamerica.com) and at 1.877.FLY.VIRGIN (1.877.359.8474).***
“We’re honored to have been named the best airline in America from Travel + Leisure’s readers every year since our launch,” said Virgin America President and CEO David Cush. “There are many surveys that attempt to rank airline quality that are paid or that exclude non-public carriers, but this independent survey of thousand of readers confirms that we’re continuing to lead the U.S. industry in terms of value, while still exceeding the service expectations of even the most discriminating travelers. As we continue to grow and expand into major new markets, this win is also a credit to the dedication of our teammates – who work every day to build a different kind of airline from the guest up.”
Since this marks the fourth win for Virgin America, the airline is inviting their Twitter followers to tweet a photo of their favorite things that come in fours using the #VX4TW hashtag. The top four photos will win a roundtrip flight on Virgin America. For official contest rules, see http://vgn.am/VX4TW.
With topnotch guest service, beautiful design and a host of high-tech amenities, Virgin America has captured a list of industry best-in-class awards since launching service in 2007. The airline offers unrivalled value with low fares and innovative features like touch-screen personal seatback entertainment, power outlets at every seat, mood-lighting and custom-designed leather seating with a deeper and more comfortable pitch. The Red™ in-flight entertainment platform offers 30 films, live and premium TV, interactive Google Maps, music videos, videogames, seat-to-seat chat, a 3000 MP3 library, a first-of-its-kind digital Shop section and an on-demand menu – so guests can order a cocktail or meal from their seatback any time during a flight. In May of 2009, Virgin America became the first airline to offer in-flight internet on every flight.Virgin America also offers one of the largest selections of fresh menu items, with a focus on lighter, more health-focused options in keeping with the airline’s California roots. Virgin America’s in-flight and airport staff training includes a special focus on delivering concierge-like guest care.
The Travel + Leisure award is the latest accolade for the young airline, which has been recognized repeatedly for its service. Virgin America has captured a string of industry best-in-class awards, including “Best Domestic Airline” in Condé Nast Traveler’s 2008, 2009 and 2010 Readers’ Choice Awards, best-in-class in the 2008, 2009 and 2010 Zagat Global Airline survey and “Best Domestic Airline” in Travel + Leisure’s 2008, 2009, 2010 and now 2011 World’s Best Awards. Earlier this year, the airline also took top honors for “Passenger Service” in Air Transport World’s Industry Achievement Awards and “Best Low-Cost Service” and “Best Staff Service” among North American competitors in the 2011 World Airline Awards.
The Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards 2011 results, including the Top 100 Hotels Overall and Top 10 Cities Overall, are featured on www.travelandleisure.com/worldsbest now and in Travel + Leisure’s August issue, available on newsstands July 22. The top winners in each category will be honored at an awards ceremony on July 14 hosted by Editor in Chief Nancy Novogrod and VP/Publisher Jean-Paul Kyrillos at the new Mr. C Beverly Hills hotel in Los Angeles. Mr. C is the flagship west coast property of the new signature hotel brand from the fourth generation of the Cipriani family.
Seven-Hour Winning Streak fares** include:
|Aug. 23, 2011 – Oct. 05, 2011|
|Markets:||21-Day Advance Purchase|
|All Days of Week|
|New York||Las Vegas||$144**|
|New York||Los Angeles||$144**|
|New York||San Francisco||$144**|
|Fort Lauderdale||Los Angeles||$114**|
|Fort Lauderdale||San Francisco||$144**|
|San Francisco||Los Angeles||$44**|
|San Francisco||Las Vegas||$44**|
|San Francisco||San Diego||$44**|
|Dallas/Ft. Worth||Los Angeles||$94**|
|Dallas/Ft. Worth||San Francisco||$94**|
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 and Chicago.
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Media Contacts: Virgin America, Patricia Condon (650) 906-8147 / firstname.lastname@example.org; Travel + Leisure, Liz Marsh (212) 382-5684 / email@example.com; Jill S. Davison (212) 382-5679 / firstname.lastname@example.org
EDITORS NOTE: Virgin America is a U.S.-controlled and operated airline and 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 three years flying, Virgin America was named “Best Domestic Airline” in the Condé Nast Traveler 2008, 2009 and 2010 Readers’ Choice Awards and “Best Domestic Airline” in Travel + Leisure’s 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 World’s Best Awards. Virgin America is a U.S. owned and operated airline that has created 2,000 jobs and welcomed more than 12 million guests since its August 2007 launch. 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. In 2011, the airline announced plans to nearly triple its fleet size by 2019 and placed the first orders for the new eco-efficient Airbus A320neo and CFM LEAP engine. In April, the airline opened its new home as an anchor tenant at SFO’s sleek and sustainable new Terminal 2 (T2). For more: www.virginamerica.com.
About Travel + Leisure: With an eye for the authentic, the innovative, and the irresistible, Travel + Leisure® (www.travelandleisure.com, @travlandleisure) fuses expert reporting on culture, food, style, and design with stunning photography, transporting readers to the places–and the travel experiences–that matter now. T+L, the monthly title from American Express Publishing and the long-standing authority in its field, has the largest audience of any travel magazine and is an indispensable guide for global nomads. Travel + Leisure has a network of international editions, including Travel + Leisure Mexico, Travel + Leisure Turkey, Travel + Leisure China, Travel + Leisure South Asia, and Travel + LeisureSoutheast Asia.
*About the Survey: Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards 2011 Survey Methodology: A questionnaire developed by the editors of Travel + Leisure, in association with ROI Research Inc., was made available to Travel + Leisure readers at TLWorldsBest.com from December 1, 2010, to March 31, 2011. Readers were invited to participate through Travel + Leisuremagazine (January, February, and March issues), T+L iPad editions (T+L 500 and Romance), and online at TravelandLeisure.com. To protect the integrity of the data, after March 31, 2011, respondents were screened by Travel + Leisure and responses from any identified travel-industry professionals who completed the survey were eliminated from the final tally. The survey website, TLWorldsBest.com, was maintained, monitored, and kept secure by ROI Research Inc., which collected and tabulated the responses and kept them confidential. The scores are indexed averages of responses concerning applicable characteristics. Respondents were asked to rate hotels, islands, destination spas, and rental-car agencies on five characteristics; cities, cruise lines, and tour operators and safari outfitters on six characteristics; and airlines and hotel spas on four characteristics (see below). In the hotel, cruise line, tour operators and safari outfitters, and airline categories, respondents could also rate additional optional characteristics; these ratings were not included in the final score. For each characteristic, respondents were asked to rate a candidate on a scale of 1 to 5, where “1” means poor and “5” means excellent. Required component ratings were then averaged, creating an overall score. A minimum number of responses was necessary for a candidate to be eligible for inclusion in the World’s Best Awards listings. Some companies were rated in both the cruise lines and tour operators and safari outfitters categories, and some properties were rated in both the destination spas and hotel spas categories. In both cases, companies and properties have different scores for each category. These were the categories and characteristics:
- Hotels: Rooms/facilities, location, service, restaurants/food, value.
- Cities: Sights, culture/arts, restaurants/food, people, shopping, value.
- Islands: Natural attractions, activities/sights, restaurants/food, people, value.
- Cruise lines: Cabins, food, service, itineraries/destinations, activities, value.
- Tour operators and safari outfitters: Staff/guides, itineraries/destinations, activities, accommodations, food, value.
- Airlines: Cabin comfort, in-flight service, customer service, value.
- Rental-car agencies: Vehicle selection, vehicle availability, car-rental location, service, value.
- Destination spas: Accommodations/ambience, treatments, service, food, value.
- Hotel spas: Ambience, treatments, service, value.
Throughout the Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards, scores shown have been rounded to the nearest hundredth of a point; in the event of a true tie, properties, companies, or destinations share the same ranking.
**Terms and Conditions: All Main Cabin fares are one-way, based on travel originating from the U.S, and require a 21-day advance purchase. Travel must occur between August 23, 2011 and October 5 2011. Blackout dates are September 2 and September 5, 2011. Tickets must be purchased by 4:00pm PDT July 7, 2011. Cancun flights do not operate daily. Fares do not include Passenger Facility Charges of up to $9 each way, a September 11th Security Fee of up to $5 each way and a Federal Segment Tax of $3.70 per domestic segment. A segment is a takeoff and landing. For service to/from Mexico, fares do not include the U.S. Immigration User Fee of $7, the U.S. APHIS fee of $5, the U.S. International Arrival/Departure tax of $16.30 each way and additional taxes/fees of up to $60, including: Mexico International Departure Tax and Mexico Tourism Tax. Tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable. Seats are limited, subject to availability, and may not be available on all flights. 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 cancel 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 70 pounds for $25 for each ticketed guest traveling within the U.S. and for free of charge for each ticketed guest traveling to/from Mexico. 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