British Airways is bringing back the Airbus A380, after more than a year when many industry doubters expected the plane may rarely fly again, if ever. Even Qatar Airways has shifted plans from retiring the double-decker “super jumbo”entirely, to operating the plane on a variety of long haul routes from November.
Ironically, the plane may also play a substantial role in making the aviation industry more sustainable, by transporting more passengers per scheduled service than other aircraft can. For a while, it looked like Emirates might be the only airline clinging to the iconic aircraft, but times are changing.
If you love novelty, the plane is set to make its long awaited return debut on British Airways flights between London and both Madrid and Frankfurt, before others.
British Airways Bringing Back A380
As speculated by GSTP in April, 2021, it’s finally happening. GSTP was sent scheduling and operating documents which confirm British Airways plans to return the A380 to service. It appears Head For Points was too.
Contrary to other reports, GSTP has been told that 4 A380’s will initially be returning to service, with flights to re-familiarize crew and pilots with the ‘super jumbo’ aircraft. To make that happen, it means some serious flying novelty is on the way.
Passengers will be able to fly between both London and Madrid, as well as London and Frankfurt on the A380. It’s unlikely first class would become bookable, unless business class (Club) is sold out, but to say you’ve flown an A380 on a 2 hour flight is amusing.
These flights won’t have the latest Club Suite business class seats, but offer a stellar economy experience for intra-Europe short-haul flying, thanks to the long haul seat dimensions.
These A380 services are scheduled to start from London Heathrow on November 8th, and will involve an AM Frankfurt trip, and a PM Madrid trip. As more cabin and flight crew get back up to speed, long haul services will recommence in December to Dubai, Los Angeles, and Miami.
It was expected Dallas service would also be added with a 5th A380 aircraft, but that’s no longer the case.
A380 Comeback Is A “Go”
Emirates currently has six daily A380’s scheduled from London Heathrow from Nov 1. Qatar Airways, which is currently dealing with A350 woes, is bringing their A380’s to London as well. As Singapore reopens international travel, it won’t be long before the other “famous” A380’s make their way.
Current plans show the first week in December for these British Airways A380 relaunches, but scheduling is so up in the air right now, with changing restrictions and aircraft issues that nothing is “solid”.
I’m told BA is scrambling to find suitable long haul aircraft, as travel scales up again. I suppose, it’s a fortunate problem to have after the last 18 months.
Maybe the retirement of the 747 was a bit premature??
Gilbert, do you think Etihad will bring their A380s back? The Residence was always a bucket list item for me.
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