The boss of Virgin Atlantic has called on MPs to prevent “significant damage” caused by a no-deal Brexit.

Chief executive Craig Kreeger has written to the Transport Select Committee asking for its help to prevent a no-deal Brexit.

The prospect of Britain leaving the EU without a deal would “inflict significant damage to the UK economy” and is already “fuelling caution” among UK travellers, he warned.

Kreeger said: “As always, Virgin Atlantic’s priority is to protect the interests of our customers and our people. Throughout the Brexit process we have had this as our guiding principle.

“The government has reached an agreement with the EU that would enable a 21-month transition period to come into effect at the end of March, reducing uncertainty for consumers and businesses.

“It is for parliament to decide whether this deal is the right one for the country, but we are certain that leaving the EU without a deal would inflict significant damage to the UK economy and must be avoided.”

His comments follow Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary warning in October that a hard Brexit could ground aircraft for up to three weeks.

He said such a situation would be “painful” but that the airline would survive.

The Civil Aviation Authority has also raised concerns about a no-deal Brexit.

The regulator wrote to its EU counterpart in July for a joint transition plan, but its calls were rejected as the European agency said it needed “more clarity” on the status of the withdrawal agreement.