The UK just unveiled a snazzy new $1.1 million paint job on its VIP Airbus A330 jet that Brits are calling 'Boris Force One'

Stefan Rousseau/PA Images/GettyAn RAF Airbus A330MRTT VIP aircraft.
  • The UK government’s flagship VIP transport aircraft just exited the paint shop with a new, distinctly British livery.
  • The Royal Air Force operates the plane, repainted at a cost of over $US1.1 million, according to The Sun, that now sports a Union Jack and the country’s name written in gold lettering.
  • Some Brits are calling it “Boris Force One,” a homage to the US Air Force One, while others are calling it “Hair Force One,” in reference to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s hairstyle.
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The US has Air Force One, Canada has Can Force One, and the UK now has Boris Force One.

That’s what some Brits are now calling their government’s VIP plane, fresh from the paint shop with a fresh look. Top government officials will now be flying in style as the Royal Air Force just unveiled the new, distinctly British paint job for the VIP-configured Airbus A330 jet that flies the country’s leaders and royals.

The mostly white aircraft with “United Kingdom” emblazoned in gold lettering across the side and a Union Jack on the tail now represents the country on long-distance overseas trips. Ironically, the jet is painted in a style known in aviation as “Eurowhite.”

The jet first arrived in the Royal Air Force’s VIP fleet in 2016 following a near-$US13 million restyling from its standard military configuration, according to CNBC. Despite boasting a luxurious interior, the A330 still wore its battleship grey colours like any other Royal Air Force transport plane and performed military-style missions when not flying the country’s top brass.

The government previously relied on chartering airliners for the task, as seen when then-Prime Minister Tony Blair chartered a British Airways Concorde to visit the US, reported by the Associated Press.

Take a look.


The Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport is the flagship of the Royal Air Force’s transport fleet as it can be used for flying troops, shuttling VIPs, and air-to-air refuelling.

Matt Cardy/GettyAn Airbus A330MRTT aircraft.

Source: Royal Air Force


It’s the military variant of the popular Airbus A330-200 aircraft, used by many of the world’s airlines including Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic Airways.

AirbusAn Airbus A330MRTT aircraft.

Known as the Voyager in the RAF’s fleet, UK government officials and the royal family primarily use the jet for long-haul overseas trips. Here’s the jet in Pakistan on a royal visit.

Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage/GettyAn Airbus A330MRTT aircraft.

Source: Royal Air Force


Short trips within the UK or Europe, like Queen Elizabeth’s state visit to Germany in 2015, can be performed with smaller jets like this Embraer Legacy,

Hannibal Hanschke/ReutersAm Embraer Legacy private jet.

Source: Daily Mail


Or this BAe 146-100.

David Cheskin/PA Images/GettyA BAe 146-100 of the Queen’s flight.

All three, however, lack the unmistakable presence that jets like the US’ Air Force One have. Until now.

1000 Words/ShutterstockAir Force One.

Read More:

The US military has a fleet of modified Boeing and Gulfstream VIP private jets – here’s what they do


The Royal Air Force just repainted this Airbus A330MRTT, named Vespina, into a stunning livery to represent the United Kingdom abroad instead of the standard grey air force colours.

Stefan Rousseau/PA Images/GettyAn RAF Airbus A330MRTT VIP aircraft.

The government converted the aircraft for VIP use in 2016, including 58 lie-flat business class-style seats and 100 economy-style seats.

Stefan Rousseau/PA Images/GettyAn RAF Airbus A330MRTT VIP aircraft.

Source: The Independent


The business class seats are Thompson Vantage seats similar to the ones found on the world’s global airlines such as Swiss International Air Lines. Here’s how they look on Swiss’ planes.

Swiss International Air LinesBusiness class on Swiss International Air Lines.

Source: SWS Certification


Royal Air Force markings also line the jet, as it’s operated by the military branch and can double as a troop transport or air-to-air refueler if need be.

Stefan Rousseau/PA Images/GettyAn RAF Airbus A330MRTT VIP aircraft.

The paint job cost UK taxpayers £900,000, equal to just over $US1.1 million.

Leon Neal/GettyAn RAF Airbus A330MRTT VIP aircraft.

Source: The Sun


The jet will be based at RAF Brize Norton, a military airbase around 60 miles from London, standing by for its first assignment wearing new the “Global Britain” colours.

Leon Neal/GettyAn RAF Airbus A330MRTT VIP aircraft.

Source: Royal Air Force

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