Virgin Atlantic (VS, London Heathrow) wants to launch direct flights from the United Kingdom to Australia "as soon as possible", founder Richard Branson told Your Money.

The British airline is mulling launching flights from London Heathrow to Perth Int'l, entering into a direct competition with Qantas (QF, Sydney Kingsford Smith). The Australian flag carrier launched the service in April 2018, becoming the first airline ever to offer non-stop flights from Australia to Europe.

Qantas deploys a B787-9 on the route and is now preparing to launch further European routes with Paris CDG expected to be the second destination.

According to the ch-aviation fleets module, Virgin Atlantic currently operates seventeen B787-9s.

Currently, Virgin Atlantic's longest route is its 9,650-kilometre London Heathrow-Hong Kong Int'l service. The distance from London to Perth is 14,500 kilometres.