Manchester Airport will have its first ever direct route to San Francisco from September 2017, connecting the city with Silicon Valley.
The route, operated by Virgin Atlantic in conjunction with its joint venture partner Delta Air Lines, will fly three times a week.
It’s a boost for Manchester’s growing tech industry as it will connect businesses with the tech hub which is home to global tech giants such as Apple, eBay and Google.
A second route between Manchester and Boston, flying twice a week has also been announced. Both services will run on one of the airline’s newest A330 aircraft which will include Upper Class, Premium Economy and Economy seating.
Manchester Airport managing director Ken O’Toole said: “Securing the first ever direct flight between Manchester and San Francisco is a significant moment for a number of reasons. Firstly, it gives the 22m passengers living within two hours of Manchester Airport yet another great long haul destination to choose from and it is sure to prove popular with leisure travellers.
“Secondly, it will deliver a deliver a real boost to the North’s economy by providing a direct link to the world’s leading location for tech and biomedical start-ups, which is now home to some of the biggest brands on the planet, like Google, Twitter and Uber.
“It is also pleasing to see Virgin announce a direct route to Boston, as well as increased frequency on its existing Barbados service and a code share agreement with Flybe. This will mean passengers from across the UK and Europe will be able to connect onto Virgin long haul flights at Manchester Airport, cementing its position as the North of England’s main gateway to the world.”
Erik Varwijk of Virgin Atlantic added: “We’re delighted to be able to offer our customers these two new direct flights to the USA from Manchester Airport. In addition to our current services to Atlanta, Las Vegas, Orlando and Barbados, the new routes to San Francisco and Boston really open up America for our customers. This year marks twenty years of our first ever flight from Manchester and we’ll continue to look for opportunities to offer our unique experience on routes where our customers are looking to fly.”