London-based Virgin Atlantic Airways has entered into a codeshare agreement with Lebanon’s Middle East Airlines (MEA), allowing passengers to switch between the carriers at London Heathrow Airport (LHR).
“Customers booking through Virgin Atlantic are now able to travel between US airports such as Boston [BOS], New York [JFK] and Los Angeles [LAX] and Beirut [BEY], connecting seamlessly between the two airlines at London Heathrow Terminal 3 with a single booking reference and check in,” Virgin Atlantic said in a statement.
Virgin Atlantic chief commercial officer Juha Jarvinen added: “As we recover from the pandemic, partnerships are more important than ever, and we look forward to building on the incredibly successful interline relationship we have had in place for a number of years. With a large diaspora population of Lebanese living in the US, this new partnership aims to respond to the large, fast-growing demand to visit friends and relatives as people start to travel to visit their loved ones post COVID-19.”
Virgin Atlantic said it also anticipates “demand for business and leisure travel to the vibrant city of Beirut as travel restrictions begin to relax and global economies gradually recover from the impact of the pandemic.”
MEA head of commercial strategy and alliances Walid Abillama said: “Our interline relationship with Virgin Atlantic was the first to target the US travel market to Beirut, and so it is natural for us to partner with Virgin Atlantic and build the first US codeshare agreement targeting Beirut.”
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