A Breath of Fresh ‘Air’: Virgin Atlantic’s Signature Scent


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Signature scents have been quietly permeating the airline industry for years, with several major carriers like Cathay Pacific, Delta, Turkish, and Air Canada already employing the power of scent to enhance their customer experience. However, 2018 saw a significant increase in airlines following suit, making it a year to remember in the world of aviation fragrances. One notable addition to this olfactory trend was Virgin Atlantic’s introduction of its signature scent, ‘Air.’

Collaborating with Rachel Vosper

In 2018, Virgin Atlantic collaborated with esteemed British scent designer and candle chandler Rachel Vosper to create ‘Air’, a bespoke fragrance designed to elevate the customer experience both on the ground and in the air. The unique scent embodies warm and exotic notes inspired by the airline’s top destinations, aiming to inspire feelings of adventure and relaxation.

Scent Branding across Virgin Group

The concept of signature scents in aviation followed the successful model established by luxury hotels, which often filled their lobbies and public areas with bespoke fragrances. unsurprisingly the airlines wanted to replicate this.

The airline implemented ‘Air’ throughout the customer journey, utilizing the scent in check-in areas, airport gates, Clubhouses, and cabins. In a clever twist, Virgin Atlantic also began selling ‘Air’ candles, allowing passengers to reinforce their travel experience at home and creating a branded up-sell opportunity.

Of course, Virgin Atlantic was not the only Virgin brand to embrace the power of scent. Virgin Voyages also entrusted Air Aroma to create Scarlet Lady’s cruise ship signature scent, ‘Ship No.1,’ an oceanic vision intended to create blissful memories.

This demonstrates how the Virgin Group has recognized the value of scent branding and its potential to enhance customer experiences across various industries.

The Power of Scent in Branding and Customer Experience

The surge of signature scents in aviation between 2015 to 2018 was staggering, demonstrating the power of scent in enhancing customer experience and building brand loyalty. Other airlines that embraced this trend included:

  • United with their fragrance ‘Landing,’
  • Delta Air Lines with their scent ‘Calm,’ and
  • Alaska Airlines with their ‘Ocean Citron’ scent.
  • Cathay Pacific with their “Signature Scent”.


Looking back, the introduction of Virgin Atlantic’s ‘Air’ marked a notable milestone in the world of aviation, where the power of scent branding emerged as a promising strategy to create memorable customer experiences. Drawing inspiration from the hotel industry’s success with signature scents, Virgin Atlantic effectively utilized the fragrance to evoke feelings of adventure and relaxation throughout their passengers’ journeys. As more airlines continue to explore the potential of scent branding, it is evident that Virgin Atlantic’s ‘Air’ played a significant role in pioneering this trend, forever leaving its mark in the annals of sensory branding history.

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