Virgin America will serve Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) with daily flights from California’s West Coast starting June 23, 2010. The new service will launch with daily flights from both San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Toronto (YYZ). Virgin America offers business and leisure travelers a host of innovative amenities, including beautifully designed mood-lit cabins, fleetwide WiFi, standard power outlets near every seat and Red — the largest and most advanced personal touch-screen entertainment platform in the skies. Since its 2007 launch, the airline has consistently swept the major travel awards, including “Best Airline” in both Condé Nast Traveler’s 2009 Readers’ Choice Awards and Travel + Leisure’s 2009 World’s Best Awards.
In an unusual move, the airline today announces its expansion to Toronto via Twitter — without the support of traditional advertising. The first 500 Twitter followers who receive the airline’s expansion Tweet can score a 50 percent discount on flights to Toronto for travel June 23-November 17, 2010.* Virgin America is the only airline based in Silicon Valley, and its inventive use of technology, social media and design has made it a favorite among tech-forward flyers.
“Toronto is one of the largest cities in North America and a world-class travel destination — with strong ties to California — most notably in the entertainment and high-tech sectors,” said Virgin America President and CEO David Cush. “Our unique in-flight experience will be a perfect match for the diverse, tech-savvy flyers along the routes and we can’t wait to start welcoming them.”
The airline’s Toronto schedule:
* SFO-YYZ: one nonstop daily flight and one daily through flight
* YYZ-SFO: one nonstop daily flight and one daily through flight
* LAX-YYZ: one nonstop daily flight and one daily through flight
* YYZ-LAX: one nonstop daily flight and one daily through flight
“We are delighted to welcome Virgin America to Toronto Pearson,” said Lloyd McCoomb, President and CEO of the Greater Toronto Airports Authority. “Virgin America’s expansion into Toronto is a testament to the strong business and tourism ties between Canada and the U.S. These routes show the importance of continued growth in the North American market.”
In addition to a Main Cabin that offers custom-designed leather seats with a deeper, more comfortable pitch, the airline’s First Class offers plush white leather seats with 55 inches of pitch, 165 degrees of recline and lumbar massagers. The carrier’s Main Cabin Select option offers 38-inches of pitch, free food and cocktails, an all-access pass to Red’s countless entertainment options, dedicated overhead bins and priority check-in/boarding. The airline’s Red platform offers over 700 hours of entertainment content, including 25 films, live and premium TV, Google Maps, music videos, videogames, seat-to-seat chat, a 3000 MP3 library and an on-demand menu — so guests can order a cocktail or meal from their seatback any time during a flight. In 2009, the menu was named best-in-class in Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards.
“Virgin America’s service is a great match for Toronto and we are thrilled to welcome them,” said David Whitaker, President and CEO of Tourism Toronto. “California’s sophisticated travelers coming to Toronto will find one of North America’s most exciting urban destinations and Canada’s entertainment and business capital.”
With outstanding service and beautifully designed new planes, Virgin America has captured a loyal guest following and experienced significant growth since its launch. In addition to Orlando and Toronto, the airline intends to announce at least three more new destinations in 2010. For Virgin America’s most recently reported quarter (the third quarter of 2009), the airline reported its first quarterly operating profit, a year-over-year revenue increase of 38 percent, record load factors and improved unit costs.
Virgin America flies to San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington D.C., Seattle, Las Vegas, San Diego, Boston, Orange County (ends May 26), Fort Lauderdale, Toronto (starting June 23) and Orlando (starting August 19).