Emirates retires first Airbus A380

A6-EDB in 2012. Photo: © ken H

Emirates has, for the first time ever, retired an Airbus A380. The aircraft was flown into storage on Tuesday.

A6-EDB was the second A380 delivered to the airline. Emirates received the aircraft back in October 2008. Plans for its retirement were reportedly made before the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic put airlines around the world in a crisis.

On Tuesday, Emirates transferred the A380 with serial number 013 from Dubai to Tarbes-Lourdes (IATA: LDE) in France. The latter airport is home to aircraft recycling company Tarmac Aerosave, which is also dismantling former Airbus A380 aircraft of Singapore Airlines.

According to Planespotters.net, A6-EDB was already withdrawn from use and put into temporary storage at Dubai Airport in late-February. Just one month later, the airline temporarily halted scheduled passenger flights as a measure of the local government to slow the spread of Covid-19.

As of right now, Emirates’ fleet includes 114 Airbus A380. Eight more are built but still due to be delivered. Currently, most aircraft are in temporary storage amid significantly lower passenger numbers due to the pandemic.