In this AFP file photo taken on April 02, 2020, tailfins of parked Virgin Atlantic passenger aircraft are pictured on the apron at Heathrow Airport, west of London.
British airline Virgin Atlantic said on Tuesday it planned to cut 3,150 jobs and would move its flying program from London Gatwick to Heathrow airport as it counts the cost of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The spread of the novel coroanvirus has virtually brought airports around the globe to a standstill, leaving airlines taking drastic steps to make savings.
"We have weathered many storms since our first flight 36 years ago, but none has been as devastating as Covid-19 ... now is the time for further action to reduce our costs, preserve cash and to protect as many jobs as possible," Virgin Atlantic Chief Executive Shai Weiss said in a statement.
"It is crucial that we return to profitability in 2021. This will mean taking steps to reshape and resize Virgin Atlantic in line with demand."
British Airways said last week it could cut as many as 12,000 jobs, over a quarter of its total, as a result of the impact of the coronavirus, with many countries advising against or restricting travel in a bid to halt its spread.
Those restrictions have resulted in a collapse in airline traffic. On Tuesday, Irelandís Ryanair posted a 99.6% fall in passenger numbers in April, while smaller low-cost carrier Wizz Air said numbers plunged 97.6%.
Virgin Atlantic said it continued to explore all available options to get extra funding through talks with the government and other stakeholders about possible support for the airline.
The British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA) said it was a terrible blow for the industry, and urged the government to stop "prevaricating" and help the aviation sector.