I have talked about the changes that are coming with the United/Continental merger livery. The new livery features the name United, but everything else is old Continental. As with any change there are people who like this and people who don’t. This led a group of United livery loyalists to create a group Save the United Airlines Tulip.
Although I like United Airlines and don’t care for Continental I don’t really have an opinion here. The tulip represents the U in United so one would think that since the name stuck that the logo should have as well. When I think of branding I do recognize the tulip as United right away, but more so than that the main piece of United branding to me isn’t on the plane but rather a song. Anyone on hold with United for a single transaction besides just flight status should be familiar with Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue.” This song instantly pulls up images of United to me even if the song is not at a part that I can consciously identify. This fact became apparent right before the 2008 Beijing olympics. United rolled out new commercials that were quite long and unrelated to United at first. Due to the music I kept thinking “this must be one of the new United commercials.” As long as United leaves the music to go with the name I don’t really care about the outside. Many United planes never got painted in the white livery anyway so hopefully the merger will push the rest of the fleet through.