What Happened to Air France A380?
How many Airbus A380 did Air France have?
Air France received 10 Airbus A380 in total. The first Air France A380 F-HPJA was delivered in October 2009. The last Air France A380 F-HPJJ was delivered in June 2014.
All 10 A380s were configured as F9C80W38Y389 – 9 First Class, 80 Business Class, 38 Premium Economy and 389 Economy seats. Five of the Air France Airbus A380 aircraft were owned by Air France or on finance lease, while the other five were on operating lease.
Air France served 16 destinations with its A380s: New York JFK, Johannesburg, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington, Mexico City, Shanghai, Abidjan, Hong Kong, Miami, Tokyo, Montreal, Singapore, Atlanta, Dubai, and Abu Dhabi. In all, Air France operated nearly 40 000 flights with its A380s, and carried almost 18 million passengers.
Why is Air France retiring the A380?
Air France initially scheduled the retirement of Airbus A380-800 starting from the end of 2022. In fact, one Air France A380 left the fleet in December 2019 before the pandemic. The aircraft F-HPJB (MSN 040) was ferried to Malta by the lessor and eventually parted out in Nock Ireland West Airport.
After the COVID-19 pandemic hit, all remaining Air France A380s were parked. In 20 May 2020, Air France officially announced the retirement of entire A380 fleet. In the statement, the airlines said:” In the context of the current COVID-19 crisis and its impact on anticipated activity levels, the Air France-KLM Group announces today the definitive end of Air France Airbus A380 operations.”
The final flight of Air France A380
The last commercial flight of an Air France A380 was on 23 March 2020, flight AF995 between Johannesburg and Paris CDG.
In order to commemorate the retirement of the superjumbo, Air France operated one final A380 farewell flight on 26 June 2020. The flight AF380 was exclusively reserved for Air France employees.
Playback of Air France A380 flight AF380 above French airspace. Picuture screenshot by Flightradar24.com
What’s the final fate of Air France A380?
When this article was updated in 2022, seven airline’s A380s were stored in Tabres-Lourdes Pyrenees airport. The airport was used by TARMAC Aerosave as an aircraft boneyard and recycling center. The fate of Air France A380 were showing below:
F-HPJA Stored in Tabres-Lourdes Airport
F-HPJB Parted-out in Nock Ireland West Airport
F-HPJC Stored in Tabres-Lourdes Airport
F-HPJD Stored in Tabres-Lourdes Airport
F-HPJE Stored in Tabres-Lourdes Airport
F-HPJF Parted-out in Teruel Airport
F-HPJG Stored in Teruel Airport
F-HPJH Stored in Tabres-Lourdes Airport
F-HPJI Stored in Tabres-Lourdes Airport
F-HPJJ Stored in Tabres-Lourdes Airport
Why are A380s being parted out and scrapped?
Even though Airbus ended A380 production in 2021, many A380 are still flying. Some exited storage and re-entered service after pandemic. However, we also have seen a few Airbus A380 had been completed scrapped after pandemic.
In fact, it is normal industry practice to part out an aircraft when the aircraft retires permanently. Since the demand of second-hand Airbus A380 is extremely low at this point, parting out retired A380s became a way to collect the remaining value of A380s.
In total, Airbus built 251 A380s including 3 test airframe. By December 2021, the global A380 fleet had carried over 300 million passengers to more than 70 destinations and completed more than 800,000 flights over 7.3 million block hours.