VIRGIN AMERICA AND AIR CHINA LAUNCH INTERLINE AGREEMENT
SAN FRANCISCO and LOS ANGELES — November 13, 2012 — Virgin America, the California-based airline, and Air China Limited, the exclusive national flag carrier of China, announce today a new interline agreement which offers seamless travel on the networks of both carriers across their respective routes in North America and Asia.
Travelers may buy a single ticket on Air China that will allow them to connect from a Virgin America city to Beijing and beyond via San Francisco International Airport (SFO), Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) or John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). Both airlines will transfer baggage between connecting flights to passengers’ final destinations.
Interline electronic tickets for Virgin America and Air China connecting flights can now be booked through all the major Global Distribution Systems (GDS) and via Air China’s distribution channels including Air China’s North America Call Center — 1-800-882-8122.
“We are pleased to launch an interline agreement with Air China that will provide guests of both our airlines connectivity across our two networks, as well as extensive new choices as they plan travel between mainland China and North America,” said Adam Green, Virgin America’s Director of Network Planning. “Virgin America’s 2,600 teammates look forward to welcoming our new Air China guests onboard.”
Dr. Zhihang Chi, Air China’s Vice President for North America, added: “Our partnership with Virgin America creates convenient connecting opportunities at Air China’s strategically important gateways in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York. This expands and strengthens both our networks and benefits travelers from the United States and China.”
Air China offers daily nonstop service from Beijing to San Francisco and New York, plus double daily flights to Los Angeles with the new generation B777-300ER. It is the only carrier with nonstop service between Los Angeles and Beijing. Its ‘triple seven’ features eight Forbidden Pavilion First Class luxury suites, 41 Capital Pavilion Business Class flat-seat beds and 259 economy seats with individual monitors and audio-video-on-demand (AVOD) entertainment system. Air China’s New York and San Francisco aircraft are scheduled to be upgraded to the B777-300ER in 2013.
Upon booking, Air China’s transpacific first and business class passengers can reserve a complimentary chauffeured luxury BMW sedan transfer from the airports in Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Guangzhou and Shenzhen to any destination in these cities. On arrival in Beijing a bilingual Chinese/English speaking Air China agent will meet and greet the airline’s premium passengers and assist them through immigration, baggage claim and customs all the way to the main exit at the arrival level for ground transportation. Through Beijing Capital International Airport—Asia’s busiest—travelers can connect to countless other exotic fascinating cities throughout China and beyond.
Known for beautifully-designed cabins and unparalleled in-flight entertainment, Virgin America has swept the travel awards since its 2007 launch. The airline has taken top honors as “Best U.S. Airline” in both Condé Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards and Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards for the past five consecutive years. Virgin America’s mood-lit, custom-designed new aircraft feature standard power outlets near every seat, Gogo™ In-flight Internet on every flight and Red™ — the most advanced entertainment system in the U.S. In addition to a Main Cabin that offers leather seats with a deeper, more comfortable pitch, Virgin America’s First Class features international-grade amenities, including plush white leather seats with 55 inches of pitch and lumbar massagers. The carrier’s premium cabin option, Main Cabin Select, offers 38-inches of seat pitch, complimentary food and cocktails, an all-access pass to entertainment options, dedicated overhead bin space, one free checked bag and priority check-in and boarding. Earlier this year, Virgin America rolled out enhancements to its Elevate frequent flyer program — including Elevate Gold and Elevate Silver status levels that offer perks such as: priority check-in, security clearance and boarding; points earning bonuses; free checked bag allowances; enhanced digital/social rewards; private discounts; an expanded advance purchase upgrade window for the airline’s exclusive eight-seat First Class; complimentary space-available upgrades to the carrier’s premium Main Cabin Select service; and complimentary access to the best seat assignments within Main Cabin.
In addition to the new Air China agreement, Virgin America has interline agreements with Virgin Australia, Virgin Atlantic, Air New Zealand, Emirates, Korean Air, Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific, South African Airways, El Al, Qantas, China Airlines, Ethiopian Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, Air Pacific, Japan Airlines, SATA and Thai Airways. For more, please click here.
Virgin America flies to San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington D.C. (IAD), Seattle, Las Vegas San Diego, Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Dallas Fort-Worth, Los Cabos, Cancun, Chicago, Puerto Vallarta, Palm Springs (seasonally), Philadelphia, Portland and Washington D.C.’s Reagan National (DCA).
EDITORS NOTE: Virgin America is a U.S.-controlled and operated airline. 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. Virgin America was named “Best Domestic Airline” in the Condé Nast Traveler 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 ‘Readers’ Choice’ Awards and “Best Domestic Airline” in Travel + Leisure’s 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 ‘World’s Best’ Awards. The airline’s base of operations is SFO’s sleek new Terminal 2. The airline’s new aircraft offer interactive in-flight entertainment systems and power outlets near every seat. For more, visit: www.virginamerica.com
About Air China: Air China is the world’s largest airline by market capitalization, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA). It operates a fleet of 432 Airbus and Boeing aircraft. Its robust network of 289 routes extends throughout Asia, the Middle East, Europe, South and North America from its main hub at Beijing Capital International Airport where it offers unrivaled connections to cities within China and beyond. As a Star Alliance member, Air China has within its reach 1,356 destinations in 193 countries. Visit www.airchina.us or contact Air China’s North America Call Center at 800-882-8122 for more information.