Malaysia Airlines to oust the Airbus A380 from its fleet

Malaysia Airlines Airbus A380 could be permanently retired soon, the airline’s parent company announced. 

Another airline is joining the ever-growing list of the Airbus A380 ex-operators. Malaysia Airlines announced that its six SuperJumbos that are currently parked would not be returning to service. Instead, the airline plans to retire them in the near future. 

Malaysia Aviation Group, the parent company of the airline, no longer sees the Airbus A380 as part of its future plan, the group revealed during a press briefing on May 5, 2021. Group Chief Executive Captain Izham Ismail said the company was looking for ways to retire the aircraft type in the coming months.

“We are cognizant of the challenges to sell this aeroplane, but we are still looking at ways and means to dispose of our 380 fleet,” Ismail said as quoted by Reuters. “At the moment, the management is convinced that the 380 doesn’t fit the future plan,” he said, referring to the Airbus aircraft.”

Malaysia Airlines has six A380s, including the aircraft carrying the ‘100th A380’ sticker. Since the beginning of the pandemic, all six planes have been parked at Kuala Lumpur Airport (KUL), data shows.

In total, only 15 airlines in the world operated the Airbus wide-body. However, the travel demand collapse brought by the pandemic has been especially cruel for the four-engined double-decker. Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA), Singapore Airlines (SIA1) (SINGY), Air France, Qatar Airways, China Southern have all hinted about their SuperJumbo fleets, or part of these fleets, retirements. 

Malaysia Airlines also plans to start taking delivery of the Boeing 737 MAX from 2024, Group Chief Executive Captain Izham Ismail announced in a virtual press briefing, as reported by Reuters. 

Malaysia’s flag carrier will start taking deliveries of the Boeing 737 MAX by 2024, over a period of three to four years. “We’re committed to taking the MAX’s delivery in 2024, but we are also exploring the possibility of taking it earlier,” Izham said. Earlier delivery depends on the lifting of the travel ban for the aircraft type still enforced around Asia.

Malaysia Airlines has 25 Boeing 737 MAX on order, whose delivery was supposed to start from July 2020 but was put on hold after the model was involved in two crashes.

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