Emirates, already the largest airline customer of the double-deck Airbus A380, recommitted itself to the iconic jetliner with the January signing of a memorandum of understanding for the acquisition of 20 A380s and an option for 16 more. Deliveries are to start in 2020.
From this carrier’s first A380 delivery through late 2017, Emirates had received 100 of the flagship jetliners.
In another development, Portugal’s Hi Fly began offering an A380 for ‘wet lease’ beginning in mid-year 2018 under arrangements that provide the aircraft with its crew, maintenance and insurance. The A380 offered for lease by Hi Fly is a second-hand aircraft previously flown by a scheduled airline, and is from the inventory of Doric GmbH as the asset-owner and lessor to Hi Fly.
All Nippon Airways (ANA) will be the first Japanese customer for the world’s largest passenger aircraft, and the carrier’s first of three A380s rolled out of the Airbus paint shop in Hamburg, Germany during December. This jetliner features the airline’s distinctive Hawaiian sea turtle livery – one of the most elaborate painted by Airbus. ANA is to take delivery of its first A380 in 2019.
Capitalising on the popularity of the iflyA380 website, Airbus released a mobile iOS app version in January. Making flying aboard the spacious A380 a matter of choice rather than chance, both the website and app allow users to browse all available A380 flights and select one of the 53 worldwide destinations served by the flagship jetliner. With the desired departure city, destination and travel dates chosen, booking is finalised through the selected airline at no additional cost. The app further enhances the onboard experience, immersing travellers in Apple’s augmented and virtual reality functionalities.