Check in online

Online Check In is the fastest, simplest way to do it. It's open from 24 hours before your flight until 70 minutes before departure.

When you check in online you can also:

  • View and change your seat.
  • Upgrade your seat. 
  • Add baggage and Advance Passenger Information (API).
  • Print or download your boarding pass to your smart phone.

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Check in using our app

Check in online via our mobile app, and sort everything out while you're on the move for a hassle-free breeze through the airport. You can download it from the App Store or Google Play.

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Airport check-in

Our airport check in desks close 60 minutes before departure. This time can vary so we recommend you check the airport guide for your departure airport. You’ve got 2 options at the airport: checking in at a self-service kiosk or at the check-in desk.

Self-service kiosk Check-in desks
The quickest way to check in at the airport is to go to a self-service kiosk. You can find them near the check-in desks.  At some of our airports you’ll need to check in at a desk as there are no self-service kiosks available. 

Caribbean inter-island flights

For passengers who are travelling between Caribbean islands on one of our inter-island services, online check in is not available, and you will need to check in at the airport.

  • For flights from Barbados to St Vincent and Grenada, check in will be available from 2 hours before departure.
  • For flights from Grenada and St Vincent to Barbados, check in will be available from 4 hours before departure.

Need assistance?

If you can’t check in online or via the self-service kiosk, please speak to one of team who will assist you. You’ll need to go to the check-in desks at the airport if you:


  • requested assistance.
  • want to check in for an unaccompanied minor.

Understanding your booking

Booking reference

A booking reference is a unique code specific to an individual reservation. It is also known as a Record/Booking Locator (or RecLoc), PNR Code, confirmation number or reference number. It can be found on your tickets, booking confirmation or travel documentation. Our booking reference is a six digit alphanumeric combination. You'll see on our eTickets we refer to this number as a 'booking reference'.


eTicket number

Your eTicket number starts with 932 and is 13 digits long. It can be found on your tickets and booking confirmation. You can use this number to check in online and log into My booking.


Virgin Atlantic Holidays booking references

If you've purchased any holiday from Virgin Atlantic Holidays, the reference can be found under 'Airline Booking Reference'. This can be found at the top of your holiday invoice.


Travel agent booking references

We also accept booking reference numbers issued by most travel agents. These appear as a six digit alphanumeric combination usually listed in your travel documentation, or available from your travel agent upon request.


Entering names

When checking in online: If you've used a middle name(s) when making your booking, you'll need to add these to your first name in order to retrieve your booking.

For example, John Robert Smith would be entered as:

First Name(s): JohnRobert Surname: Smith 

We've gone cashless

We no longer take cash payments at the airport so please bring an alternative for any additional charges or fees that may apply. This reduces the need for contact between customers and Virgin Atlantic staff, helping you fly safe and fly well.

No printer? No problem

If you checked in online and you weren't able to print your boarding pass. You can print one at the airport at our automated kiosks, or ask us to do it at our Bag drop desks. And of course, there's no additional charge.

Check if you need a visa

Not sure what the visa requirements are for your destination? Here's everything you need to know.


Visa and entry requirements

Baggage when transferring flights

Please note, we can only through check your baggage to the destination shown on your ticket.  We cannot through check baggage to your final destination if you are holding separate tickets.

Most countries require you to clear your baggage through customs at the first entry point of entry if you are travelling onwards within the same country.


Baggage allowance on connecting flights 

With your boarding pass, you’ll fly through the airport. You don’t have to print it; you’ll receive a digital boarding pass automatically after check-in. Check the options here.

After check-in

You can choose how you’d like to receive your boarding pass after check-in. These are the digital options:

  • Virgin Atlantic app
  • My booking
  • E-mail

Printed boarding pass

If you don’t have a mobile device or would rather have your boarding pass on paper, you can arrange this at the airport. Go to the self-service kiosk or check-in desk to pick up your boarding pass. You can also print the pass at home.

Didn’t get a boarding pass?

If we have yet to check your travel documents (such as your passport or visa), you might receive a check-in confirmation instead of a boarding pass. We’ll then give you the boarding pass at the airport. Please go to the airport check-in desk to pick it up.

You can drop off your checked baggage at the self-service drop-off points (where available) or at the bag drop desks. 

Opening hours

Our bag drop desks close 60 minutes before departure. 

At some airports, the self-service drop-off points and bag drop desks might open or close earlier. Check the airport website for detailed opening hours.

There might be a queue at the self-service baggage drop-off points and check-in desks. Therefore, we recommend that you arrive at the airport on time. Make sure to be there at least 3 hours before departure.

After you’ve checked in and dropped your bags off, you’ll need to pass through security to reach departures.

If you need to bring gels or liquids through security with your hand baggage, you can get these ready in clear bags before leaving home or these will be available before you reach security.

As you go through security, you’ll need to remove belts, metal items and in some cases your shoes. Laptops and tablets will need to be removed and placed in a separate tray.

Boarding starts 60 minutes before departure. Check the airport screens or the app for live information.

We’ll be boarding the aircraft by Group number, check your group number on your boarding pass, stay seated and wait to be called (if you can’t see your Group number, check out the images below).

Boarding groups

Customers who need extra time to get settled in will still be able to board first, followed by group 1, 2 and so on, in order.

Pre-boarding Customers requiring extra time or assistance to board and families with children under 4
Group 1

Virgin Atlantic Upper Class

Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Gold

Group 2

Virgin Atlantic Premium

Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Silver

Group 3

DI Diamond Medallions

DL Platinum Medallions

DL Gold Medallions

AF/KL Flying Blue Platinum

AF/KL Flying Blue Gold


Group 4

DL Silver Medallions

AF/KL Flying Blue Silver

Singapore Solitaire Life PPS Club / PPS Club / Krisflyer Elite Gold

Virgin Australia Club / Platinum / Gold



Economy Delight (V Class)

Group 5 Flying Club Red members
Group 6-9 Economy boarding
Boarding pass
Boarding pass
Mobile boarding pass

To keep things running smoothly between your connecting flights we’ve created a page with everything you need to know.

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Once you have cleared security and are travelling Upper Class, you can head over to our award winning Clubhouse in LHR, or if you have just landed into LHR your can refresh in our Revivals Lounge. To find out more about our Clubhouses in LHR and other airports, check out our Clubhouse page.

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Airport lounge partners

We’re delighted to offer airport lounge access to all our passengers, both in the UK, and overseas in Orlando, Vegas and Atlanta.

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If you're flying into the UK from outside the EU, there are certain foods you are not allowed to bring with you, even if they are for your personal use.

These foods include:

  • Meat
  • Meat products
  • Milk and dairy products
  • Potatoes
  • Some fresh food products, such as fruit, fish, eggs and honey, may be allowed from some countries.

If you're arriving from an EU country, there are no food restrictions.

How to take food through customs

If you're arriving in the UK from outside of the EU, you will need to choose the appropriate Customs Channel to walk through when you are passing through the airport. These are your options:

If you’re not carrying illegal food products, such as meat, walk through the Green Channel on arrival at UK Customs. This is a declaration that you have nothing illegal in your luggage. If you do have any illegal food products and you walk through this channel, you will have committed a crime, which could result in a fine or prison.

If you ARE carrying illegal food products, walk through the Customs Red Channel and tell a Customs official what you have. Your food will be taken and destroyed, but you won’t face any penalty.

If you’re not sure whether the food you've brought is illegal, walk through the Customs Red Channel and tell a Customs official what you have. If your food is found to be illegal, Customs will take it from you, but you won't face any penalty.