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XL Airways, Virgin Atlantic and REDjet Rule New Routes This Week

March 16, 2012 at 9:37 AM | by | ()

Sometimes it’s hard to stay on top of all the new route announcements that come our way, so we’ve complied a little bit of a rundown below. As long as you can afford the fares, this should definitely help add to your passport stamp collection.

· XL Airways:
If you’re dreaming of spring in Paris you might not need to wait that much longer, as there’s another option to get to France when traveling out of San Francisco International Airport. XL Airways is starting up nonstop flights between SFO and CDG twice per week beginning on May 26, and the new options should run throughout the summer all the way until September 8.

We’re not totally sure on the fares—it looks like it’s still too early to book flights—but we’d bet you’d save some spending cash when compared to the big boys like Air France. Airbus A330s will be doing their thing to get you and your buddies cross the United States and the Atlantic, and there will be two seating options—Galaxy Class and regular old Economy Class.

· Emirates:
It might be a little too late to still catch the cherry blossoms doing their thing, but Emirates is still moving full speed ahead with a brand new nonstop option between Washington, DC and Dubai. The new flights will operate to and from Washington-Dulles beginning on September 12, but unfortunately there aren’t any plans—yet—to utilize one of Emirates’ A380s.

That’s okay, as the Boeing 777-300ERs planned for this route is hardly shabby especially with eight private first class suites, 42 flat bed seats in business class, and 304 economy class seats In the back of the cabin. We’re thinking this new option is focused mostly on business and government travelers, but Emirates route network can probably get you to pretty much anywhere if you’re just looking for a nice vacation.

· Virgin Atlantic:
They’re on the move again, and this time it looks like Virgin Atlantic is planning to effortlessly connect you between London and Mumbai—that’s in India. The renewed nonstop flights start doing their thing on October 28, and the airline is quick to point out that the flights will be timed to offer connections for incoming flights from spots like New York, Boston, Chicago, and Washington.

Virgin Atlantic plans to serve the new routes with some of their new Airbus A330s, and if you’re traveling on an expense account—or have loads of extra money—be sure to check out the brand new Upper Class Dreamsuite. Even if you can’t sit up front there’s still going to be some entertainment elsewhere in the plane, as their newest Panasonic in-flight entertainment system will give you access to 300 hours of content including plenty of Bollywood and Indian movies.

· REDjet:
Still no service to the nifty fifty—it’s okay to dream—but REDjet is adding some new cities and new countries to their route network in the Caribbean. The area’s only low cost carrier is on the move again, as they’re ready to start flying out of Barbados to spots in St. Maarten, as well as in Antigua.

The flights to St. Maarten start up a little sooner around the middle of May, and then it’s going to be the beginning of June for the flights that will operate back and forth over to Antigua. Depending on the day of the week you fly—and when you book—there could be options for as low as $9.99 each way before taxes and fees. We’re excited to check out REDjet for ourselves sooner than later, but first we just need to get down to the Caribbean.

· Virgin America:
We might have mentioned this earlier in the week, but we’d be silly not to quickly recap the news coming out of the Virgin America camp. The favorite domestic carrier to many is sending some of their planes to a new spot this week, as the plan is to welcome Portland, Oregon to the flight map.

Just in time for summer there will be new flights beginning on June 5, with two daily flights back and forth from Los Angeles and one option from San Francisco. Rates start at $99 each way, so a cheap weekend In the Rose City is yours to have this summer.

[Photos: Virgin Atlantic and Olivier CABARET]

Archived Comments:

XL Airways

I am super excited about XL Airways doing the SFO to CDG route. Prices have been available for months. They are ridiculously low, like $550 each way. You probably couldn't see them because they don't have a booking engine on their English website, just on the French website. You can book through 3rd party sites. I'm really hoping they are successful as I'm looking to do flight to Paris next year.