Virgin Atlantic have pulled a plane out of storage, and pressed it back into action – after the appropriate safety checks and a special paint job.
G-VNAP – or “Sleeping Beauty” as she was known was taken out of service in 2015, and has been residing in France since then. Due to fleet issues, Virgin Atlantic are short of a few planes – and have pull the plane back into service.
Before the plane re-entered service, the plane made a trip to Air Livery at Manchester Airport for a new paint job.
Renamed “Sleeping Beauty Rejuvenated“, the three class Airbus A340-600 rejoins the Virgin Atlantic fleet. The paintwork on the side to quote Virgin Atlantic:
“The result is a stunning ‘thank you’ to our people with a 7-foot by 152-foot message exclaiming ‘a big Virgin Atlantic thank you’ along the length of the very long fuselage of the A340-600. The paint scheme salutes the work of the 9,000 people around the world who keep our operation running 24/7 and includes a limited edition upright version of the ‘Flying Lady’, raising her glass to toast our people.”
Craig Kreeger, Virgin Atlantic CEO states
“The people of Virgin Atlantic have made our business and our brand what it is today. They’re both our magic ingredient and our greatest strength”
“We wanted to take the opportunity to do something special with this aircraft to recognise all the hard work that goes on day in and day out across Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays, so the ‘big Virgin Atlantic thank you’ message is for every one of our 9,000 people. Paired with the special edition of our iconic Flying Lady, we hope we’ve created something our people can feel proud of, which is also eye-catching and fun for our customers.”
The extra Airbus A340-600 joins will be supported by four Airbus A330-200 aircraft. that have been leased from the remains of Air Berlin.
These extra aircraft that are joining the Virgin Atlantic fleet are so that the planned flying programme can continue.
It’s interesting to see Virgin Atlantic pull back a retired aircraft and place it back into action. The issues with the Rolls Royce Trent 1000 engines that will cause some of the Boeing 787-9 to be grounded seemed to have forced the airlines hand – and they’ve come up with a solution that works for it.
Currently – no routes have been announced for this plane, although I’m sure we’ll find out what it does next soon enough
How other airlines will react is another matter…
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