Dubai based airline Emirates will soon begin the process of retiring its Airbus A380 fleet. The move was anticipated and is eventually expected to result in the reduction of the number of air crafts to 90-100 by the mid 2020s. The airline had added the first A380 to its fleet back in 2008 and announced earlier this year that it is planning to retire them fully in the 2030s.
After the Emirates cut its final delivery by 39 aircrafts, Airbus announced that it would cease the production of the A380 in 2020. The final deliveries to the Emirates will take place in 2021. This will also make them the last airline to still have the A380s on order apart from one for the ANA. Tim Clark, the Emirates Airline president while talking to a leading daily said, “We have aircraft coming out as their [operating] leases end, or when their financial leases end if they are wholly owned.” While explaining the reason behind it Clark added, “They are under retirement because we’ve got a major overhaul coming up and it’s best to take the old aircraft out – they’re all written down – and take the gear off them rather than buy a $25 million main landing gear. I need two, possibly three, to meet that [overhaul] requirement.”
However, despite the announcement, the A380 is expected to continue to be a part of the Emirates fleet for the foreseeable future. The airline president added that the aircraft will still be seen the airline’s fleet up to 2035. The retirement of the A380 is to be progressive as it will first stabilize at about 115 aircraft and then go down to 90-100 by the middle of 2020s.
The airline does not believe that there is a viable second hand market for the A380 fleet so it has decided to get all the life out of the planes before discarding them. This means that the passengers will not have to say a good bye to the A380 cabins just yet.
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