Thursday, October 21, 2021

Recently Re-delivered Virgin Australia Boeing B737-800 VH-VUI First Visit Back into CQ at Mackay Airport

On Thursday 21 October, Virgin Australia Boeing B737-800 VH-VUI was noted making its first visit back into Central Queensland, since it was re-delivered back to the airline at the start of September.  It operated into Mackay Airport as VOZ609/612, arriving from and later departing back to Brisbane.

The B737-800 was previously operated by Virgin Australia also as VH-VUI and was one of two aircraft that were placed on the American Aircraft Register and ferried back to lessors in the USA in late 2020. VH-VUI took up the registration marking N341CG and ferried out of Australia from Melbourne (Tullamarine) in mid-December 2020.

On Saturday 4 September, N341CG arrived back in Australia from the USA and promptly took up the registration marking of VH-VUI once again. It re-entered service with Virgin Australia on Wednesday 13 October.

Of interest, it appears that VH-VUI is still named 'Kewarra Beach'.

Meanwhile, VH-VUI was joined by another B737-800 VH-VUJ which also ferried out in mid-December 2020 and was re-registered N343CG.  It has since also returned to Australia in early October and has been re-registered back to VH-VUJ.  At the time of writing though, VH-VUJ has not yet re-entered service with Virgin Australia.

Finally, as mentioned below, Virgin Australia will also take delivery of seven former SilkAir B737-800 aircraft.  With SilkAir now merged with parent airline, Singapore Airlines, these aircraft were deemed surplus to requirements. SilkAir moved to dispose of the planes earlier this year.  It is reported these aircraft are 9V-MGF, 9V-MGG, 9V-MGH, 9V-MGI, 9V-MGJ, 9V-MGP, and 9V-MGQ. 

9V-MGF was delivered to Virgin Australia in Brisbane on Saturday 9 October with it promptly placed on the Australian Aircraft Register as VH-IJQ.  It ferried to Townsville (pictured below) on Saturday 16 October for re-painting.

UPDATE!  On Thursday 28 October, VH-IJQ returned to Brisbane looking resplendent in the Virgin Australia livery (pictured below).  VH-IJQ joins VH-IWQ (ex 9V-MGI) now at Brisbane Airport.

Photos taken by Brandon Giacomin and Lloyd Fox  ©

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