Virgin Group

Virgin America will be the latest airline brand to disappear

After months of teasing, Alaska Airlines has bad news for loyal customers of Virgin America — their airline's name is being dumped.

Alaska announced late Wednesday that it will retire the Virgin brand, probably in 2019, adding that name to a list including Continental and US Airways that disappeared in the past decade.

Launching a new airline takes lots of money and patience — one reason that Virgin America's debut in 2007 was so eye-catching. The other was its hip vibe including mood lighting and young, attractive flight attendants.

So when Alaska announced last year that it was buying Virgin for $2.6 billion, it was like asking Virgin customers to trade in their...

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