Category Archives: V Australia

Virgin Australia Airlines retires the V Australia and Pacific Blue names and brand

Virgin Australia Airlines (formerly Virgin Blue Airlines) (Brisbane) today (December 7) retired the V Australia name and brand.

Virgin Australia officially launched the new name for both V Australia and Pacific Blue under the same new brand, Virgin Australia.

To quote the airline on the change, “The new identity has been designed with a clean and contemporary look and feel that encapsulates our company’s repositioning as the airline of choice for all market segments. Now that our international airlines are all operating under the Virgin brand, our focus is on redesigning the product in the air to ensure a first-rate travel experience across all of our airlines. We look forward to revealing the new designs in the first half of 2012”

Above and below: Boeing 777-3ZG ER VH-VPH (msn 37943) taxies at Sydney on December 7, 2011 with the new titles while (for now) retaining the V Australia color scheme.

Below: The Pacific Blue Airlines name and brand is also being retired.

The international aircraft will be staying in the old colors until the aircraft enter heavy maintenance and repainting.

V Australia commenced passenger operations on February 27, 2009.

Copyright Photos: John Adlard.

Virgin Australia Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Pacific Blue Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Hawaiian Airlines and Virgin Australia launch code share flights to Hawaii

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) and Virgin Australia (Brisbane) group of airlines have launched a new agreement that allows Virgin Australia’s international airline, V Australia, to codeshare on Hawaiian Airlines flights between Sydney and Honolulu, as well as beyond on connecting neighbor island flights in Hawaii to Kahului, Maui; Lihue, Kauai; and Hilo and Kona on Hawaii Island.

Hawaiian currently operates five weekly flights from Australia, and will increase to year-round daily departures starting December 14, 2011.

Hawaiian and Virgin Australia have had an interline agreement in place since 2006, allowing Hawaiian’s guests to connect to destinations throughout Australia and New Zealand.

This agreement also allows members of Virgin Australia’s frequent flyer program Velocity to earn and redeem frequent flyer points on Hawaiian’s flights. The two carriers are working on a reciprocal program allowing Hawaiian Miles members to earn and redeem miles on Virgin Australia that is expected to take effect in 2012.

Copyright Photo: Eddie Maloney.

Hawaiian Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Virgin Australia-Singapore relationship is approved by the CCS

Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) and Singapore Airlines (Singapore) have received the final approval from the Singapore government for their proposed alliance. Virgin Australia issued the following statement:

“Virgin Australia group of airlines (ASX: VBA) welcomed the Competition Commission of Singapore’s (CCS’s) approval of its proposed alliance with Singapore Airlines.

The proposed alliance will enable the two airlines to provide guests with an expanded network of destinations, seamless connections, a more convenient flight schedule and more opportunities to earn frequent flyer points and access lounges.

Approval of the alliance is key to the company’s strategy of building an international network with global coverage to complement Virgin Australia’s core domestic business.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) announced draft approval of the proposed alliance on October 13, 2011 and the airlines await its final decision.”

Virgin Australia Slide Show: CLICK HERE

V Australia Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: John Adlard.

Delta and Virgin Australia to launch the trans-Pacific codeshare in November

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) and Virgin Australia Airlines (Brisbane) announced two major milestones of their recently approved joint venture: an expanded codesharing agreement on flights between the United States and Australia, and an enhanced customer experience in Los Angeles.

Codeshare service will be available for sale beginning on September 19, 2011 for travel effective on November 6, 2011.

Under the agreement, Delta will add its code to all flights between Los Angeles and the Australian cities Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, operated by V Australia, Virgin Australia’s long-haul international carrier. V Australia will add its code to Delta’s service between Los Angeles and Sydney.

For customers, the expanded codesharing means more options when booking trans-Pacific travel on Delta or V Australia, as well as benefits such as accrual of frequent flier miles and premium lounge access regardless of which airline operates the flight.

To further improve the customer experience, from November, flights operated by V Australia will arrive at Delta’s Terminal 5 at Los Angeles International Airport. This will allow for easier and faster connections within the same terminal to the rest of Delta’s network, as well as access to new customs and immigration facilities in Terminal 5.

Delta Slide Show: CLICK HERE

V Australia Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

Delta moves closer to the Virgin Blue Airlines Group

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) today (May 2) announced expanded codesharing with the Virgin Blue Airlines Group (Brisbane) that will add five new destinations in Australia and New Zealand to Delta’s network.

The new service, which will begin May 21, will allow Delta customers to seamlessly connect to Perth, Adelaide and Canberra in Australia, as well as Auckland and Christchurch, New Zealand.

Delta customers currently can connect on Virgin Blue (soon to be called Virgin Australia) flights to Brisbane and Melbourne, Australia, under previously announced codesharing flights that began in January 2010. Delta operates nonstop service between Los Angeles and Sydney, where all codeshare flights connect.

Virgin Blue customers flying the group’s long-haul airline – V Australia – now will be able to connect in Los Angeles to Delta flights to San Francisco, Las Vegas, Atlanta and Detroit, in addition to codeshare flights currently available to New York-JFK and Orlando.

The expanded service is the latest step in a previously announced marketing alliance between Delta and Virgin Blue to offer customers access to more destinations across the Pacific as well as reciprocal airport lounge and frequent flier benefits.

Copyright Photo: John Adlard. Please click on the photo for additional details.

V Australia Slide Show: CLICK HERE

V Australia arrives in Abu Dhabi

V Australia (Sydney) is now flying to Abu Dhabi. V Australia becomes the first Australian carrier to operate to the Middle East in 20 years.

Arriving at Abu Dhabi International Airport at 11.40pm GST on February 24, the Sydney – Abu Dhabi service included Virgin Blue Group CEO and Managing Director John Borghetti and Etihad Airways CEO James Hogan, along with the Australian Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, Mr. Doug Trappett, and Virgin Blue Group’s new ambassador and one of the world’s most successful swimmers, Ian Thorpe, who has come to Abu Dhabi to continue training for the 2012 Olympic trials.

The new V Australia Abu Dhabi service is a key part of the partnership between Virgin Blue Group of Airlines and Etihad Airways which will see the airlines offer a total of 27 weekly services between Abu Dhabi and Australia, including double-daily services between Abu Dhabi and Sydney, daily Melbourne-Abu Dhabi flights and six frequencies per week between Abu Dhabi and Brisbane.

The V Australia Abu Dhabi service will operate three times per week from Sydney from February 2011 and three Brisbane – Abu Dhabi services per week by February 2012, using its new fleet of three-class economically and environmentally efficient Boeing 777-300 ERs. VA 29 will fly from Sydney to Abu Dhabi on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, departing at 4:05 p.m. (1605) and VA 30 will fly from Abu Dhabi to Sydney on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, departing at 10:45 a.m. (1045).

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems. Please click on the photo for additional information about V Australia.

Virgin Blue Holdings alliance with Etihad Airways is approved

Virgin Blue Holdings’ (Brisbane) five-year alliance between Virgin Blue Holdings (the owner of Virgin Blue, Pacific Blue and V Australia) and Etihad Airways has been approved by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).

Etihad Airways is based in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, which is also the airline’s hub. Etihad’s fleet of 54 aircraft operates close to 1000 flights per week, serving an international network of 64 destinations in 42 countries.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems. Please click on the photo for information on V Australia.

Combined route map: The alliance will give both entities many route options.

Virgin Blue and Air New Zealand did not receive antitrust approval

Virgin Blue Airlines Group (Virgin Blue Airlines, Pacific Blue Airlines and V Australia) (Brisbane) and Air New Zealand (Auckland) had their proposed trans-Tasman alliance initially denied by Australia’s antitrust regulator. The regulator was concerned this alliance would reduce competition.

Both carriers can appeal the decision and provide more information before September 24 when a final decision will be made by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

In other news, Virgin Blue is planning to introduce a new brand.

Read Richard Branson’s comments concerning these recent decisions in the Herald Sun:


Virgin Blue Holdings swings to a full year profit

Virgin Blue Holdings (Virgin Blue Airlines and V Australia) (Brisbane) has swung to the black again, reporting a fiscal year net profit of $18.8 million for the year ending on June 30.

Copyright Photo: John Adlard. V Australia’s sleek Boeing 777-3ZG ER VH-VOZ (msn 35302) arrives back at the Sydney base.

Virgin Blue and Etihad Airways sign a commercial agreement, will acquire Airbus A330-200s

Virgin Blue Holdings Limited (Brisbane) and Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) have signed an agreement establishing a commercial partnership that will enable Virgin Blue’s international arm, V Australia, to launch direct services to Abu Dhabi in 2011 and the two airlines to offer a joint network of more than 100 destinations from October 1, 2010.

Together, Etihad and V Australia will move towards a total of 27 weekly services between Abu Dhabi and Australia – including double-daily services between Abu Dhabi and Sydney, daily Melbourne-Abu Dhabi flights and six frequencies per week between Abu Dhabi and Brisbane.

V Australia will operate three Sydney-Abu Dhabi services per week from February 2011 and three Brisbane-Abu Dhabi services per week by February 2012, using its new fleet of three-class Boeing 777-300ER and becoming the first Australian carrier to operate to the Middle East since 1991.

From October, Virgin Blue Group customers can access Etihad’s network of 65 destinations across North America, Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the Subcontinent. All Virgin Blue services will be available to Etihad customers, opening up 45 destinations in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, and to Asia, South Africa and Los Angeles.

In other news, The Virgin Blue Group of Airlines announced the second phase of its network review with the introduction of Airbus A330-200 aircraft for its domestic network and an overhaul of its international long haul network.

The introduction of the two Airbus A330-200 will increase the fleet size to 90 aircraft. The first A330-200s will operate services between Perth and the east coast of Australia.

From February 2011, Virgin Blue will consolidate its international V Australia network to two strategic hubs in Los Angeles and Abu Dhabi providing a gateway to a truly international network through partnerships.

V Australia will withdraw from its loss making Boeing 777-300 services to South Africa and Phuket.

Copyright Photo: John Adlard. Boeing 737-8FE VH-VUA (msn 33997), decorated with the “Mile High Karaoke” markings taxies at Sydney.