Air France retires first Airbus A380

Air France Airbus A380
Photo: © Maarten Visser

Air France has retired its first of ten Airbus A380 aircraft. The French flag-carrier plans to phase out its entire Airbus A380 fleet by 2022.

The A380, registered as F-HPJB, was flown to Malta on Saturday and will be returned to its lessor. It was delivered to Air France in 2010.

Air France is already the second airline to retire an Airbus A380. In 2017, Singapore Airlines started to phase out some of its A380s. Furthermore, other airlines, including Lufthansa and Qatar Airways, also plan to retire at least some of their A380 jets. In turn, HiFly Malta took over one second-hand A380 that was previously operated by Singapore Airlines and deploys the aircraft on wet-lease flights for other airlines.

Earlier this year, aircraft manufacturer Airbus announced that it will end its Airbus A380 programme. Emirates, the largest A380 operator, therefore cancelled 39 remaining orders and will take delivery of its final A380 in 2021. The airline instead ordered 50 A350-900 at the Dubai Airshow 2019.