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St. Lucia Welcomes New Virgin Flight

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006 – A new Virgin Atlantic flight from Manchester arrives in St. Lucia on Thursday November16th, via the Hewanorra International Airport. This is an additional flight to the service provided by Virgin Atlantic in St. Lucia on Sundays, Tuesdays and Fridays.

Public Relations Manager with the St. Lucia Tourist Board Kirby Allain, says Virgin has decided on the additional flight because of its confidence in maximizing on the already profitable business it has in St. Lucia.

Allain says this is extremely good for St. Lucia, as the new flight will help boost the number of arrivals from the United Kingdom - a very important source market.

“In addition to that, it opens some new gateways into areas such as Northern Ireland, which we have been eyeing for quite a while. As a matter of fact, we have been doing some bi-lateral marketing activities with the airline promoting the island within the UK as much as possible, so that visitors can reference it as another option in getting to St. Lucia,” Allain added.

The new Virgin flight is regarded as very important especially in light of the upcoming Cricket World Cup - one of the biggest sporting events to take place in the Caribbean. Increased airlift capacity, Allain said, redounds to the benefit of the local economy.

According to Allain, “People must get the options of getting to their destination, and the St. Lucia Tourist Board as a marketing agency, wants to increase the numbers, and the way to do that is to offer as many ways as possible to get to the country.”

This expansion of flights by Virgin Atlantic comes just a few weeks after the announcement of a new route between Manchester and Barbados.

The airline sees the biggest airport in the north of England as an important part of its network and is sure it will prove a popular departure point.

“The new weekly service to St. Lucia in 2006 will give our northern customers more choice of destinations for business and holidays,” said Virgin Atlantic boss Sir Richard Branson.

“I am confident that it will be a popular addition to our route network.”

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