Hurricane Names for the 2021 Hurricane Season

How Are Hurricanes Named? Who Names Them?

May 4, 2021
Hurricane Florence Sept 2018

Hurricane Florence as seen from the International Space Station on Wednesday, September 12, 2018.

NASA

Here are the 2021 hurricane names for both the Altantic Basin and the Eastern North-Pacific. Is your name or the name of a loved one listed this year? Find out. Plus, learn how hurricanes are named and see the interesting history behind naming storms.

Who Names Hurricanes?

Hurricane season begins on June 1 and ends on November 30 each year. The lists of hurricane names for each season are chosen by the World Meteorological Organization (not The Old Farmer’s Almanac). There are six lists of names for Atlantic and Pacific storms, which are cycled through every six years.

The lists have been maintained since 1953 (originally by the National Hurricane Center). For the 2021 hurricane season, the list of names from 2015 is being used again, so don’t be surprised if some sound familiar. Those that are not retired from the list this year will be used again in the 2027 season. 

Note: The names of especially destructive hurricanes are usually retired and not used again. See a list of retired tropical storm and hurricane names here.

Hurricane Names for the 2021 Hurricane Season

The lists below include storms in both the Atlantic Basin (Gulf and East Coast hurricanes) and Eastern North-Pacific (Pacific Island and West Coast hurricanes). 

Note: Tropical storms are given names as soon as they display a rotating circulation pattern and wind speeds of 39 miles per hour (63 kilometers per hour). A tropical storm develops into a hurricane when wind speeds reach 74 mph (119 kph).

The traditional names listed above are in alphabetical order as the storms occur. In other words, the first storm of the season will be given the first name on the list (starting with the letter A), the next will be given the name starting with B, and so on. An average year, based on 1981 to 2010 data, will result in 12 named storms, including six hurricanes and three major hurricanes.

Hurricane Names for the 2021 Hurricane Season

Atlantic Tropical (and Subtropical) Storm Names for 2021

Ana Henri Odette
Bill Ida Peter
Claudette Julian Rose
Danny Kate Sam
Elsa Larry Teresa
Fred Mindy Victor
Grace Nicholas Wanda

Eastern North-Pacific Tropical (and Subtropical) Storm Names for 2021

Andres Ignacio Rick
Blanca Jimena Sandra
Carlos Kevin Terry
Dolores Linda Vivian
Enrique Marty Waldo
Felicia Nora Xina
Guillermo Olaf York
Hilda Pamela Zelda

What Happens If We Run Out of Names?

The 2020 Atlantic hurricane season was the most active Atlantic hurricane season on record—we ran through the entire alphabetical list of names (and then some)! This happens very rarely (it has only happened once before, in 2005), but seems likely to become more common. What happens when it does?

If more storms occur in one season than there are names on the list, the newest storms have traditionally been named after the Greek alphabet (Alpha, Beta, Gamma, etc.). However, this will no longer be the case starting in 2021. Instead of the Greek alphabet, a list of supplemental names will be used. Like names from the regular annual lists, supplemental names can be retired and replaced if the storms are deemed to be significantly impactful.

The WMO decided to discontinue use of the Greek alphabet for several reasons, including:

  • Using the Greek names was such a rare occurrence that it distracted from more important news about the hurricanes themselves. 
  • When translated into different languages of the region, the Greek names led to confusion and inconsistencies.
  • The names Eta and Iota were retired after the 2020 season and there had not been a plan for replacing retired Greek names. 

So, any extra storms will now be named from the supplemental names lists shown below. 

Supplemental Hurricane Names

Atlantic Storm Names

Adria Heath Orlanda
Braylen Isla Pax
Caridad Jacobus Ronin
Deshawn Kenzie Sophie
Emery Lucio Tayshaun
Foster Makayla Viviana
Gemma Nolan Will

Eastern North-Pacific Storm Names

Aidan Izzy Rey
Bruna Jacinta Skylar
Carmelo Kenito Teo
Daniella Luna Violeta
Esteban Marina Wilfredo
Flor Nancy Xinia
Gerardo Ovidio Yariel
Hedda Pia Zoe

The History of Naming Hurricanes

  • Native Americans called these destructive storms hurakons, after “a great spirit who commanded the east wind.” Spanish explorers adopted the word and then began giving hurricanes the names of patron saints on whose feast days the storms occurred. Later, hurricanes were identified by their longitude and latitude.
  • In 1950, a formal practice for storm naming was developed by the U.S. National Hurricane Center. At that time, storms were named according to a phonetic alphabet (e.g., Able, Baker, Charlie) and the names used were the same for each hurricane season; in other words, the first hurricane of a season was always named “Able,” the second “Baker,” and so on.
  • In 1953, to avoid the repetitive use of names, the system was revised so that storms would be given female names. This mimicked the habits of old naval meteorologists, who named the storms after their wife or girlfriend, much the way ships at sea were named after women. A weatherman in Australia is credited with being the first person to give a tropical storm a female name.
  • In 1979, the system was revised again to include both female and male names.

Today, naming hurricanes is the responsibility of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), which revises the lists each year. However, the WMO doesn’t only name hurricanes that occur off the shores of North America; they maintain lists for all areas affected by tropical cyclones. See hurricane names for other regions here.

Learn More About Hurricanes

For more information on hurricanes, see:

Also check out our series on some of the worst hurricanes to ever hit the US: The Worst Hurricanes in US History (Part I)

Reader Comments

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Names

Good morning. Just wanted to give you some ideas for names. I have 2 wonderful step sons who's mom passed away 4 years ago. The boys are now 11 and 9. It would be amazing for them to have a storm named after them. Their names are Amir and Najee. Thank you!

Hurricanes on the west coast

I live on the west coast. Most of the hurricanes may come from the lower area of the Pacific Ocean, I am not so sure about that, however, can you tell me if their have been a hurricane as destructive as Sandy or Katrina to hit the west coast? Also, with a name like Alice, I thought I would see it as a hurricane name. :D Thanks

Why not Alice?

The Editors's picture

Hi, Alice: Records do not indicate a tropical cyclone or hurricane in the Pacific as destructive as Sandy or Katrina, but of course this doesn’t mean that there hasn’t been one. There have actually been several hurricanes named Alice, in June 1954, December 1954 (named Alice prematurely, as it was thought that it would arrive in 1955), and July 1973. In those “old” days, each’s year’s hurricanes would be named from the same alphabetized list, which began with Alice. Nowadays, the used names have been retired, and a new list of entirely new names is created for each year (several years in advance). And allow us to say that with a much beloved mother-in-law named Alice, we totally agree that it’s a very fitting name for a hurricane! Thanks for asking!

Origin of word hurricane

The word comes from the Taino language which is "huracán". It did not come from the continental native peoples or nations. The closest native tribes were more than likely those of early Florida who would have been likely descendants from the various tribes of the Caribbean region.

I know all of you are busy

I know all of you are busy but could you name a hurricane after Dominic or Yvette that would be nice. Have a great day.

Good morning, is there any

Good morning, is there any way that in the future you guts can name a tropical storm Keira??? That's would be awesome lol thanks

You should contact the

You should contact the National Hurricane Center and recommend this to them. :o)

Can u use the the name

Can u use the the name "ingrid"? IT IS AN AWESOME NAME!!!!!

That name got retired back in

That name got retired back in 2013 :/

How can a kid tell a

How can a kid tell a hurricane is coming and how can I know that a hurricane is coming soon? Is there a way to save the crops in time?

Hi, Julieana: A hurricane is

The Editors's picture

Hi, Julieana: A hurricane is just a bigger, meaner version of a "normal" storm, so "normal" storm folklore indicators, such as leaves on trees being blown so that they turn up or over, would apply. The thing is, the effects of hurricanes are so much more drastic that it's always best during hurricane season (June 1 to Nov. 30 in the Atlantic) to keep up with local media for possible storm warnings. Also, the National Hurricane Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration website has the best warnings: www.nhc.noaa.gov/. The way to get crops out of the field in time is to get as much warning as possible and then use your best judgment.

Are there any hurricanes

Are there any hurricanes coming in Turks and Caicos in oct/nov 2014?

I find it completely

I find it completely hilarious that my sisters name is Paulette Renee' these 2 storms are going to be hell

I am planning a trip in OCT

I am planning a trip in OCT to NYC, NY, I currently live in FL. How will the weather be?? Any hurricanes or major storms approaching in OCT 2014

We are not forecasting

The Editors's picture

We are not forecasting hurricanes or major storms in October but that does not mean it might not happen.
Safe travels!

Do you know what the weather

Do you know what the weather will be on 10/26? A great guesstimate would be fine. Hoping for an outdoor wedding.

There will be no storms

There will be no storms hitting at this part of the month so look at the news and make sure that you see no storms coming your way. Right now I think you are fine as wine.

It would be great to see a

It would be great to see a hurricane named ERYNN. After my daughter! It would be fitting, as she is a bit of a mess at home! Her room looks like a hurricane went through it! Its a unique way to spell the name and have not seen it this way for a hurricane yet. ;o)

HOW ABOUT USING THE NAME

HOW ABOUT USING THE NAME "ROY" FOR A HURRICANE? JUST ASKING.

HOW ABOUT USING THE NAME

HOW ABOUT USING THE NAME "ROY" FOR A HURRICANE? JUST ASKING.

I know my name is spelt

I know my name is spelt differently but alot of these names for storms are unique... it would be amazing to have a storm named after me... KADIE

I know my name is spelt

I know my name is spelt differently but alot of these names for storms are unique... it would be amazing to have a storm named after me... KADIE

Who can I sue ?? They can't

Who can I sue ?? They can't use my name for this turd of a Weather event. Is al roker behind all this?

Sarah should have been the S

Sarah should have been the S hurricane for the atlantic

I go for that name

Sounds good to me. Don't think they had that name before

Sara

Sara will be used. The name Sara will replace the retired name Sandy from 2012. Sandy is the first female S name to ever be retired.

Why isn't there an Anthony

Why isn't there an Anthony for the Atlantic

Hurricane Bethany should be

Hurricane Bethany should be next for letter B that is my girlfriends name .

I completely agree , my name

I completely agree , my name is bethany and ive been waiting forever to see a storm bethany.

Hurricane CHYREISE !!!

Hurricane CHYREISE !!!

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