The British airline carrier will be part of the new Connect Airways group
After 40 years of operation, British regional airline carrier Flybe will change its style. Starting next year, it will operate under a new name Virgin Connect and will belong under the newly-formed Connect Airways group.
The airline’s chief executive, Mark Anderson, unveiled the change yesterday, “marking the beginning of Flybe’s journey into the future as part of the extended Virgin family”.
Excited to announce that in 2020 we will be joining the #VirginFamily as Virgin Connect, your new go-to name in regional flying ❤️
— Flybe ✈ (@flybe) October 15, 2019
The acquisition of Flybe was approved by the European Commission in June this year and the group will also include other companies such as Virgin, Stobart Group, or Cyrus Capital.
Anderson said: “We are hugely excited by this milestone in our airline’s 40-year history.
“We will remain true to our heritage and reason for being, which is offering essential regional connectivity to local communities.
“At its heart, Virgin Connect will be passionately focused on becoming Europe’s most loved and successful regional airline. It will offer travel that is simple and convenient with the personal touch.”
Currently, it is still unclear how exactly Flybe will adopt the Virgin brand beyond a linked name, as both airlines provide rather different customer experiences. Anderson added that the carrier aims to fulfil passengers’ expectations.
“Our customers will naturally expect the same exceptional travel experience as they do with other Virgin-related brands. Whatever their reason for flying, we want our customers to feel loved and know we will always put their needs first in every decision we take.”
Anderson concluded: “As part of the Virgin family, we now have a tremendously re-energized team. From here on in, we invite our customers, partners and the communities we serve to join us on every step of this exciting journey!”
An overall rebrand is scheduled to be completed next year. Passengers with existing booking on Flybe in 2020 should not have their plans disrupted. Once the rebrand is complete, their flight might simply be operated by Virgin Connect rather than Flybe.