How we name our planes

A Virgin Atlantic A330 flies through a pink sky
Virgin Atlantic
Virgin Galactic
Richard Branson's signature
Published on 5 March 2018

One of the playful little touches that really make people smile when they fly with Virgin Atlantic is seeing the unique designs and names on the sides of the planes.

I’m often asked how certain planes are named, and many people have noticed the musical links within some of them. This all goes back to Virgin’s roots as a record label – when we launched Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Records was the biggest independent music label in the world. So we love to honour that legacy by playfully nodding to some of our favourite bands and songs.

Virgin Atlantic A330-200 time lapse

But in doing so, the team also get creative by taking inspiration from the registration of the aircraft, which are set before the planes arrive. For instance, G-VROY reminded us of Virgin Records legend Roy Orbison and was called Pretty Woman. G-VDIA’s sparkling registration conjured up The Beatles and was named Lucy In The Sky. Two different plane registrations got us thinking the late, great David Bowie, another Virgin artist: G-VUFO was named Lady Stardust, while G-VZIGG became Dream Jeannie.

Two members of Virgin Atlantic cabin crew stand in front of Daydream Believer, an Airbus A330 aircraft
Image from Virgin Atlantic

There’s plenty of other musical monikers too, from Uptown Girl to Dancing Queen, Ruby Tuesday to Jersey Girl. In fact, we recently unveiled four new Airbus A330-200 aircraft to join Virgin Atlantic’s fleet from March and three have musical names: Daydream Believer, Honky Tonk Woman and Strawberry Fields. You can see their transformation, alongside Gone With The Wind-themed Scarlett O-Hara (G-VWND) in the time-lapse video above.

A Virgin Atlantic plane on the ground
Image by Virgin Atlantic

The aircraft will offer three new seating styles in the Upper Class Cabin, and will initially operate flights from Manchester to New York, Boston, San Francisco and Barbados – head over to Virgin Atlantic to find out more and book your flights. They are all fully Wi-Fi connected (along with the rest of the fleet), so you’ll be able to stream your favourite songs from The Monkees, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, or whoever else you feel like listening to. With that in mind, I’m off to listen to a record or two.