Friday, February 1, 2013

CQ Plane Spotting Historic Spot - The Special Colours of Jetstar Airways

Since last month's look at the special colours to adorn the various Virgin Blue / Virgin Australia aircraft over the years was so popular (link HERE), this month we take a look at the special colours that have adorned the various Jetstar Airways aircraft over the years.

Jetstar Airways was established by Qantas in 2003 as a low-cost domestic subsidiary. The airline commenced operations with Boeing B717-200 aircraft, but now operates a fleet of Airbus A320/A321 and Airbus A330 aircraft.

Jetstar's Boeing B717-200s were the first aircraft to be adorn in special liveries. VH-VQH (later registered VH-YQH) was painted gold and wore short-lived titles promoting a men’s deodorant. It eventually wore Christmas/New Year colours, and later was noted wearing titles for ‘Domino’s Pizza’.

Sistership VH-VQJ advertised a pair of hire car companies – with different liveries applied to the port and starboard sides of the aircraft. These photos were taken at Mackay Airport shortly after I arrived back in Mackay from Brisbane in July 2005.

In 2004, Jetstar acquired their first Airbus A320 registered VH-JQG (pictured below in the first few weeks of operations at the Gold Coast Airport). As the A320 fleet grew, plane spotters started noticed slight differences with the text style of the Jetstar motto "All day, every day, low fares".

A320 VH-JQE was photographed in Cairns in 2009 showing one of these slightly different styles.

A320 VH-JQW was acquired by Jetstar in 2007 and started operations wearing Jetstar titles but with a Saudi Arabian Airlines. By the start of 2008 however, it had been re-painted into a full Jetstar livery and titles.

In 2007, the Gold Coast Titans rugby league team entered the Australian National Rugby League (NRL) Competition. Jetstar was a major sponsor of the club and of the NRL, and as a result, applied decals to A320 VH-VQP depicting several of the Titans players.

In 2008, another Rugby League related decal was applied to another A320, with VH-VQH wearing prominent 'Go Roos' titles. The decals were supporting the Australian Rugby League team - the 'Kangaroos' - in their quest to win the Rugby League World Cup.  VH-VQH is shown at Mackay Airport early in 2009.

Also in 2008, A320 VH-VQQ was adorned in a livery promoting the Sea World theme park on the Gold Coast. As shown in the photos below, VH-VQQ had two different liveries applied to both sides of the aircraft, with a dolphin design on the port side and a shark design on the starboard side.

A320 VH-VGZ had decals applied to promote the 'Quiksilver' surfing brand. Quiksilver sponsor a large surfing competition on the Gold Coast, and these decals were applied to coincide with this competition in 2010. VH-VGZ actually wore two different designs - one on each side of the aircraft. The decals also depicted pro surfer and Quiksilver sponsored surfer Julian Wilson.

A320 VH-VQN wore a livery promoting phone carrier Telstra's high speed wireless 'Next-G' broadband Internet service. These striking colours were only short lived, and I was lucky enough to capture VH-VQN on a visit to the Gold Coast.

One of the last A320's to be painted in a special scheme was VH-VGP which had a large decal applied in 2010 promoting the 'farewell tour' of Australia rock band Powerderfinger. I was lucky enough the catch VH-VGP at Proserpine / Whitsunday Coast Airport one morning.

The latest A320 to have special colours applied was VH-VQR, which is shown below wearing titles welcoming home the New Zealand Olympic Team. It seemed a bit strange to some spotters that an Australia-based airline would wear titles of the New Zealand team, however Jetstar have several aircraft based in New Zealand throughout the year for both domestic and international services in New Zealand.

Interestingly, some spotters consider that other Jetstar aircraft have special liveries. Airbus A330-200 VH-EBC is currently flying on the Jetstar international network in a predominantly white colour scheme (as opposed to the usual silver colour scheme).

Airbus A321 VH-VWY was initially delivered to Jetstar, and operated for a short time with Jetstar, in a white scheme. VH-VWY was quickly repainted however, into the traditional 'silver' livery.

And lastly, spotters have noticed that throughout the Jetstar fleet, there are now as many as four different styles of text and design used on the Jetstar logos and titles that are applied to the front the aircraft fuselage. As noted above, the original A320 aircraft delivered to Jetstar featured small titles as shown on VH-JQG.

A320 VH-VQE (photographed below on approach to Mackay Airport) shows the next style of titling, with a larger titles on the forward fuselage. This style proved popular, and is the main colour scheme that was applied to most of Jetstar's A321 and A330 fleets.

A320 VH-VGA was delivered to Jetstar in late 2011, and has a noticeably different style of titling on the front of the aircraft. A330s VH-EBR and VH-EBS were also delivered to Jetstar in this different style titling.

And finally, Jetstar's newest A320s have been noted wearing a different titling style still! I caught VH-VFI in Cairns recently wearing a new Jetstar logo style and titling.

Another big historic post, but I hope that you enjoy looking back at all these great photos!

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