How do airlines nickname their aircraft?

Hello fellow flyers! I have been doing some flying, and research in VA’s, and was wondering, How to airlines nickname their aircraft? I know Frontier nicknames the animal on the tail, but would anyone know how other airlines partake in this practice? Thanks!



This belongs under #real-world-aviation or

Fixed. Sorry about that.

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Hawaiian Airlines partakes in this “aircraft naming” process. They primarily named their B717 and B767 aircraft after both migratory birds and birds that can be found locally in the state. The A330 aircraft are named after star constellations. The ATR’s that are operated are named after the winds that blow through the various islands. I used to live in Hawaii many years ago, and flew on HAL fairly often when traveling between the islands and the Continental US. Only reason I knew that the aircraft were individually named. 😊

More information can be found here:


I know that Virgin America has named most of the aircraft in its fleet… I don’t know if Alaska will continue naming the aircraft though.

Virgin America’s Plane Names: Found in link

There are some pretty interesting ones


Turkish Airlines names it’s aircraft after cities and geographical locations in Turkey such as Izmir or (Sea of) Marmara

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I agree. Some of those names are pretty weird.


i may be wrong but i believe Thai partake in this practice too

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Aer Lingus does this aswell. They name their aircraft after saints.

Pan Am used to name all of their aircraft (and paint it on the side as well):

Credits to Dirk Growth


Is Pan Am no longer operating?


Pan am operated from around 1950 till it went out of business in 1991.

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Huh. I guess I didn’t know.

It’s fine, I just googled it :D

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Boeing 707 and 747 – Australian capital cities and major centres
Boeing 737-400 – Australian birds
Boeing 737-800 – Australian towns
Airbus A330 – Australian valleys
Airbus A380 – Australian aviation pioneers.

And then the 787:


More information on it all:


Aer Lingus name all their planes after saints. This is also painted on the side1292015-bomb-scares-at-dublin-airport-752x501


Kenya Airways
777 and 787 named after various African attractions.

747 for cities e.g
PH-BFB for Bangkok
PH-BFC for Calgary
PH-BFL for Lahore
PH-BFN for Nairobi
PH-BFT for Tokyo

777 for various attractions e.g PH-BVD for Amboselli Natl Park

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Croatia Airlines;
Airbus A319/3320 - cities in Croatia ( Pula, Zadar, Split, Dubrovnik, Zagreb, Vukovar )
Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 - regions in Croatia ( Slavonija, Lika, Istra, Dalmacija, Zagorje, Primorje )

KLM also name their 787s by flowers, the english name on the left, and the dutch name on the right.

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Lufthansa also names most of the aircraft after cities or German states, see the complete list in the link below