Virgin Atlantic deploys its first A350 plane

Virgin Atlantic put its first Airbus A350 into the sky Tuesday, serving New York-London Heathrow. 

The aircraft features redesigned cabins and is the first of 12 A350-1000s that Virgin Atlantic expects to receive through 2021. Three more of the planes are slated to arrive this year, all of which will be put into service on one of the carrier’s five daily roundtrips between London and New York. 

Virgin Atlantic expects to deploy the A350 on Heathrow-Los Angeles service next year and to use the aircraft on London Gatwick-Orlando in 2021. 

Features of the redesign include new lie-flat pods in business class (called Upper Class on Virgin Atlantic). Upper Class also will have a lounge area called The Loft, which Virgin says is the largest social space across any of its aircraft.  

In the economy cabin, new seats will have six-way adjustable headrests.

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