Introducing“V Australia”: Virgin Blue Announces Name Of New International Longhaul Airline And Livery25/07/2007
Competition on the Trans Pacific route is a step closer with the official announcement in Sydney today of the name of Virgin Blue’s new long haul carrier and flagship aircraft.
Virgin Blue is also pleased to announce that yesterday it received formal confirmation from Australia’s International Air Services Commission (IASC) that it has approval to operate return non-stop services between Australia and the United States commencing late 2008*.
“V Australia” will initially operate flights between the east coast of Australia and the west coast of the United States of America, with the first flight operated by a brand new B777-300ER launch aircraft named “Didgeree Blue”.
The livery of “V Australia” was also unveiled today, keeping in touch with its Virgin Blue roots, but revealing a contemporary look which will launch a new era of competition on the Trans Pacific route. The airline will sport a smart silver fuselage with a red tail featuring the stars of the Southern Cross and elements of the Australian flag.
It will be the fourth airline in the Virgin Blue Group of Airlines including multi award winning domestic carrier Virgin Blue, New Zealand based airline Pacific Blue and Polynesian Blue, the joint venture airline between Virgin Blue and the Government of Samoa.
Virgin Blue put out a call to all Australians as part of a nationwide “Name the Airline” competition in conjunction with MIX FM radio station to help name the new international airline.
The competition attracted approximately 5942 entries which included some especially creative suggestions such as “Randy Roo Airlines”, Choo Choo Flying Big Blue” and “Pineapple Airlines”.
The clear favourite was however eventually selected by the judges from the thousands of entries with “V Australia”, nominated by Teresa Manuel from Sydney, unanimously voted as the best name for the new airline.
“Didgeree Blue”, suggested by Irene Wilson of Brisbane, was also chosen as the perfect name to grace the nosecone of V Australia’s flagship and launch aircraft.
Virgin Blue Airlines Group Chief Executive, Brett Godfrey, said, “We had an amazing response to help name the airline and V Australia stood out among the entries. It is nice and simple, easily recognised, both understated and obvious and has a clear Australian identity.
“This is the first time in decades Australia has a start-up long haul international airline and we look forward to bringing competitive air fares and a new style of service to the Trans Pacific market.”
Commenting on the new livery Brett Godfrey continued, “It is important for us to use the Southern Cross not only for its geographic connotations, but also for its place in Australian aviation folklore. Southern Cross was also the name of Charles Kingsford Smith’s aircraft as the intrepid aviator opened the world to Australia with his record breaking long distance flights and we think it appropriate to reflect the very best of a modern confident Australia taking to the skies.”
V Australia has also applied for permission from the United States Government to commence services in November 2008 and is continuing its progress with the development of its launch route network, product and fare structure.
* Subject to regulatory approval