The first of the newly painted Aer Lingus A330-300s, the St. Munchin, at JFK on Friday, January 18
By Irish Echo Staff
Aer Lingus is unveiling a paint job – and then some.
And an invited group of the interest and curious were given a preview of what is to come at John F. Kennedy International Airport last Friday.
The Irish airline is undergoing its first major branding in twenty years.
The new look "brand identity" includes a reboot of its iconic green livery and shamrock logo, with uniforms designed by Louise Kennedy due later this year, said a release.
Crucially, the airline’s iconic shamrock logo has been retained, though it has been
"restyled" with a tilt "to symbolize dynamism and speed."
The heart-shaped leaves are intended reflect "warmth and hospitality," the airline says.
“Eagle-eyed passengers may also notice a new, ‘Instagram-worthy’ shamrock on the wingtips... ‘in prime position for capturing on social media,’” the release stated.
What passengers will mostly notice, should they be flying one of the new Aer Lingus planes, is the new color.
Aircraft will be mainly white, with teal replacing the old green and a "light green" for the stripes and shamrocks.
An A330-300 is the first aircraft to shine in the new shades.
The St. Munchin was painted in Shannon and flew to New York last Friday as flight EI105.
And despite the overcast conditions, the new livery stood out.
"Re-imagining this great brand was both challenging and stimulating," said Seán Doyle, who replaced Stephen Kavanagh as Aer Lingus CEO earlier this month.
The new look, developed with U.S. design and brand strategy company Lippincott, reflects the airline's ambition to become "the leading value carrier across the North Atlantic,” it was stated at an initial launch event in Dublin Airport.
As well as retaining “proudly familiar” features, the rebranding reflects Ireland in 2019, “a society that is open, progressive, liberal, outward-looking and dynamic," said Mike Rutter, the airline's Chief Operating Officer.
The redesign also contains a new variation on the old.
A new font, “diodrum,” contains a nod to Celtic heritage in its “g.”
The “refresh,” stated the carrier’s release, comes as part of a major investment program that has ranged from a Business Class upgrade to new routes, including Montreal and Minneapolis-St Paul, and the arrival of 14 new A321LR “neo” aircraft - a new generation of single-aisle, transatlantic planes with economy and business class.
Aer Lingus plans to expand its transatlantic fleet from 17 to 30 aircraft by 2023. The current total fleet is 65 aircraft, but the plan is to grow to more than eighty aircraft in the next few years.
Last year, meanwhile, it was revealed that designer Louise Kennedy had been chosen to replace the airline's current uniform, worn by cabin crew since 1998.
Aer Lingus has been part of the Willie Walsh-led International Airline Group since 2015. Walsh is a former Aer Lingus CEO.
The new brand has been introduced across it’s the airline’s app, website, check-in and boarding gates, with the rollout to be fully completed by 2021, said the release.
It is understood the cost of the rebrand came in below €2 million and over fifty shamrock designs were considered as part of the process, RTE reported.
The report stated that 850 liters of paint are needed to cover a wide-bodied aircraft in an operation taking ten days. A narrow body plane requires 500 liters being applied over seven to eight days.