Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Virgin America Goes to the Dogs in 'Operation Chihuahua'

Virgin America crew welcomes Maximus, one of fifteen Chihuahua pups
flown to New York so they can be adopted into loving homes. Jan. 6, 2010 at SFO

in 'Operation Chihuahua'

Too much time is spend covering negative news stories when really, we should give recognition to and applaud those positive heart-warming stories that surface from time-to-time. Okay. . . this may be old news for some but a must read for animal-lovers everywhere!

The overpopulation of Chihuahuas in California has forced the San Francisco Animal Care and Control to look to the ASPCA on the East Coast for help. Virgin America volunteered to fly the pups in Operation Chihuahua airlift and tracked their cross-country journey via in-flight WiFi.

“We’re pleased to help San Francisco Animal Care and Control fly these little guys out to the East Coast so they can be placed in adoptive homes,” said Ross Bonanno, Vice President of Airports and Guest Services at Virgin America. “As the only airline headquartered here in San Francisco, we take a great interest in our community – and many of our teammates and guests are dog lovers, so of course, we just had to do this.”

Virgin America pilots welcome Rebecca Katz of San Francisco's
Animal Care and Control (SF ACC) & Chihuahua pups being flown to New York.

Virgin America sent the dogs off in high-style with a red carpet departure from a San Francisco International Airport gate, complete with champagne cocktail “Chi-mosas” and cupcakes for flight guests and doggie treats and toys for the Chihuahuas. While onboard, the dogs were treated to a glimpse of the service named the best in America in Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards and Condé Nast Traveler’s Readers Choice Awards. Virgin America offers guests and Chihuahuas alike a unique flying experience, complete with mood-lit cabins, touch-screen entertainment and Gogo® In-flight Internet on every flight. Dog-lovers got to find out what the Chihuahuas were up while in-flight by visiting Virgin America's Facebook Page which featured videos and photos posted from 35,000 feet via in-flight WiFi between 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. ET.

“We are glad to be given this opportunity to help meet demand for these dogs in New York and at the same time help find loving homes for San Francisco’s homeless animals,” said Gail Buchwald, Senior Vice President of the ASPCA Adoption Center. The public can learn more about the Chihuahuas by visiting ASPCA or calling 212-876-7700 ext 3210.”

Since its launch in August 2007, Virgin America has won a list of industry best-in-class awards for its topnotch service and fun, tech-savvy amenities. Virgin America offers more than 100 flights a day with service to San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington D.C., Seattle, Las Vegas, San Diego, Boston, Orange County and Fort Lauderdale. The airline currently offers daily flights from: SFO to LAX, SFO to JFK, SFO to SAN, SFO to IAD, SFO to LAS, LAX to JFK, LAX to IAD, SFO to SEA, SEA to LAX, JFK to LAS, BOS to LAX, BOS to SFO, SFO to SNA and LAX to FLL and SFO to FLL.

Fabulous fares to fly by!

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