Saturday, October 30, 2021

Former Virgin Australia Boeing B737-800 VH-VOQ Departs Australia For Good from Alice Springs Storage as VP-CJA

During this week on Wednesday 27 October, it was interesting to note that former Virgin Australia Boeing B737-800 VH-VOQ (now registered as VP-CJA) departed Australia for good after being in storage at Alice Springs for a period of time.  VP-CJA initially flew into Darwin before continuing to South Korea and then Guangzhou, China where it looks to have been placed in storage. 

VP-CJA departs Darwin  (Photo taken by Sid Mitchell  ©️)

The B737-800 - as VH-VOQ - ferried into Alice springs on Sunday 18 October 2020 after being initially sorted at Brisbane since March 2020.

VH-VOQ at Alice Springs in September  (Photo taken by Jarrod Swanwick  ©️)

VH-VOQ has had an interesting history with it originally ordered new by and registered to Virgin Blue in October 2003.  It was accepted by Virgin Blue in the standard Pacific Blue livery and delivered to Australia via Brisbane in late October 2003.  The aircraft was named 'Peta Pan'.

VH-VOQ operated its first flight for Virgin Blue at the end of October 2003.

VH-VOQ at Brisbane Airport in 2006

VH-VOQ at Brisbane in 2008

In the years after, VH-VOQ was one of several B737-800 aircraft to be partially re-painted and have the 'Pacific Blue' titles and colours on the fuselage removed.  Smaller 'Airline of Virgin Blue' titles were added and then 'edited' as shown below.

VH-VOQ in 'Airline of Virgin Blue' livery in 2011

VH-VOQ in 'Airline of Virgin Blue' livery in 2011

Virgin Blue was eventually renamed Virgin Australia Airlines in May 2011 and at then end of 2011, VH-VOQ was ferried to Christchurch where the Virgin Australia livery was applied.  VH-VOQ was also re-named as 'Margaret River'.

VH-VOQ at the start of 2012

VH-VOQ with a temporary red nose cone also in 2012

VH-VOQ at Hamilton Island in 2013

VH-VOQ at Rockhampton in 2015

VH-VOQ operated its final flight in late March 2020, with its final visit to Central Queensland on Friday 13 March 2020 when it completed the VOZ613/616 flight into Mackay Airport from and back to Brisbane.

As mentioned above, after being placed into storage at Brisbane, VH-VOQ then ferried to Alice Springs on Sunday 18 October 2020 where it was placed into storage at the Asia Pacific Aircraft Storage facility.

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