Say farewell to Virgin America

Virgin America's last flight marks the completion of its merger with Alaska Airlines.

Kent German Former senior managing editor / features
Kent was a senior managing editor at CNET News. A veteran of CNET since 2003, he reviewed the first iPhone and worked in both the London and San Francisco offices. When not working, he's planning his next vacation, walking his dog or watching planes land at the airport (yes, really).
Kent German
2 min read

A Virgin America Airbus A320 departs San Francisco 

Kent German

Virgin America, the cheeky US airline with the cool purple interiors, over-the-top marketing campaigns and the clever aircraft names ("Virgin & Tonic," anyone?) will finally disappear from the skies Tuesday night following its 2016 acquisition by Alaska Airlines.

The last flight, 1947, will depart from Los Angeles for the airline's home hub in San Francisco at 9:35 p.m. PT on Tuesday. By morning, Virgin's name will disappear from airports, including SFO's remodeled Terminal 2, and air traffic controllers will no longer use the callsign of "Redwood" to identify the company's planes.

From Wednesday on, Alaska will will be the sole brand and operator for the combined carrier. Many of Virgin's red-and-white aircraft have yet to be painted in Alaska's blue-and-white livery with the smiling Eskimo on the tail, but that would should be completed next year. Just how Alaska -- an airline that has called itself "Proudly all Boeing" -- feels about incorporating Virgin's Airbus airliners into a 737 fleet is a matter for airline geeks

When it first started flying in 2007, Virgin America quickly won a loyal following and it grew over the next decade to cover the entire United States and a few cities in Mexico. Always pushing the boundaries of passenger entertainment and connectivity, in 2008 it was one of the first US airlines to introduce inflight Wi-Fi. 

If you still love the Virgin brand, don't despair. There's always Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Australia, Virgin Trains in the UK or you can just wait for Virgin Galactic or the Hyperloop One.

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