Virgin Atlantic introduces on site pre-flight COVID-19 testing trial for crew

Image from Virgin Atlantic
Image from Virgin Atlantic
Clare Kelly
by Clare Kelly
4 October 2020
Virgin Atlantic is the first airline in the UK to introduce a rapid point of care pre-flight COVID-19 testing trial for cabin crew and pilots – taking every precaution to protect the health of its customers and people.

Launched on September 30th on flights to Shanghai and Hong Kong, Virgin Atlantic plans to extend the trial to Barbados and select services later in October, before a wider roll out to test every operating crew at least once per month. 

Corneel Koster, Chief Customer and Operating Officer at Virgin Atlantic, commented: “The introduction of on site pre-flight COVID-19 testing for our crew and pilots ensures we remain at the forefront of the aviation industry’s safe return to the skies. As testing technology and COVID-19 requirements around the world develop, we want to utilise technology that is relevant, accurate and available to keep our teams and customers healthy and safe.

While the COVID-19 testing landscape evolves, we continue to be in discussions with multiple providers offering different technologies to guarantee the best solution possible, while absolutely ensuring that we do not compete with the NHS for vital resources."

Image from Virgin Atlantic
Image from Virgin Atlantic

Virgin Atlantic’s new measures will ensure that the testing programme complements NHS Lighthouse Lab-based testing and does not compete for, nor divert, gold standard NHS testing resources.

Virgin Atlantic continues to call for UK and US governments to introduce a pre departure testing solution to remove quarantine and minimise travel restrictions, in order to open up the skies, support economic recovery and protect 500,000 UK jobs reliant on travel and tourism.

The health and safety of customers and crew remains Virgin Atlantic’s number one priority, with the testing trial forming part of extensive measures already in place to ensure our customers fly safe and fly well. 

Virgin Atlantic also recently announced that Flying Club members can now earn tier points on redemption flights.

Visit Virgin Atlantic to find out more.