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Order of Australia (AM)
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Virgin Atlantic Launches New Flights Between Vancouver and London

Virgin Atlantic has announced the launch of a new route between Vancouver and London Heathrow. The latest route, which will see up to 40,000 customers flying between the cities, will start in May 2012 and will operate four times a week throughout the summer period until the end of October.

In addition to the Vancouver service, Virgin Atlantic is launching a second service between London and San Francisco that will operate three times a week starting in March 2012. It is estimated that the new Vancouver route and increased frequency at San Francisco have the potential to create up to 430 jobs in aviation and tourism across both cities.

"The North American market has always been at the core of our business. Our success here has been due to our investment in product innovation and our willingness to respond to customer demand," said Steve Ridgway, Virgin Atlantic's Chief Executive. "With almost 20,000 people flying from the UK to Canada each month in the peak season, the UK is the largest overseas market for passengers to British Columbia. Greater competition to both Vancouver and San Francisco will benefit passengers through improved choice and better value for money."