Fleet revitalization in full swing as Virgin Australia introduces Boeing 737 MAX to its line-up.

This Thursday, Brisbane anticipates the grand arrival of Virgin Australia’s premier Boeing 737 MAX, marking a remarkable moment in the airline's history. This comes just over three years following the airline’s near-collapse and subsequent resurrection by Bain Capital.

Christened 'Monkey Mia' as a nod to Virgin's custom of dedicating its aircraft to Australian water bodies, the Boeing 737 MAX will embark on an impressive 12,000km expedition from Boeing's hub in Seattle to Brisbane, making a brief stop in Hawaii.

While the MAX was initially slated for Virgin's inaugural Cairns-Tokyo route that takes off a day prior to the aircraft's arrival, an older Boeing 737-700 jet will be handling these daily flights at the outset.

The MAX jet is scheduled to ply domestic routes initially, beginning July 30, before it commences flights to Tokyo. This arrangement is intended to allow for crew acclimatization and to secure standard regulatory clearances.

Virgin Australia deems 'Monkey Mia's' arrival as a significant stride in their broader transformation plan and fleet rejuvenation program. This strategic shift will be supported by the deployment of an additional seven 737-8s in the coming years.

With the new MAX fleet, Virgin envisages a burgeoning series of domestic and short-range international routes. These range from the Sydney-Melbourne-Brisbane triangle and east-west services to Perth, and even include potential jaunts to international locales like Bali and Fiji.

The Boeing 737 MAX aircraft will be instrumental in serving both transcontinental and traditional short-haul international routes, according to previous statements by Virgin Australia Group CEO, Jayne Hrdlicka.

Looking beyond this fleet of eight 737 MAX 8 jets, Virgin is also poised to take delivery of 25 larger 737 MAX 10 jets, with the first deliveries set to start in 2024.