You Soon Won’t Be Able To Fly On The Airbus A310

Air Transat is currently the last operator of the Airbus A310 in the western world. However, this won’t last for long, so there are few remaining opportunities to experience this old plane. The Canadian airline will be phasing out the aircraft as it takes deliveries of the new Airbus A321LR through a deal with the leasing company AerCap. According to an article by the Boarding Area Network, the entire Air Transat A310 fleet will retire sometime next year, as more of their new planes enter service.

Air Transat A310
An Air Transat A310 Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Other operators of the A310 passenger variant are airlines in Iran (Mahan Air, Iran Air, and Taban Air) and Yemen (Yemenia). For most of our readers, this means that Air Transat – as a Canadian airline – is the most feasible option with its current fleet of six. The A310 is still used as a military aircraft by armed forces all over the world including Egypt, Mongolia, Spain and Thailand.

The A310

During the development of the A300 program, airlines approached Airbus looking for a smaller aircraft. After extensive research and studies Airbus announced the A300B10, later renamed the A310.

The twin-engine, twin-aisle widebody A310 was manufactured in the late 1970s and 80s. Production officially ceased in 2007. The model in use by Air Transat is an A310-300 which seats 250 passengers in a two-class configuration.

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Mahan Air A310
Mahan Air of Iran is the world’s largest operator of Airbus A310 aircraft Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Yemenia A310
Yemenia, the national airline for Yemen also operates an A310 Photo: Wikimedia Commons

About Air Transat

As a leisure operator (similar to that of Thomas Cook), Air Transat flies from major cities in Canada to over 60 destinations. These destinations include major cities in western Europe and vacation destinations in Central America.

The Montreal-based airline flies over five million passengers annually. Air Transat is actually a subsidiary of the larger company Transat A.T. which is also a vacation-package and tour company. Air Transat also has Airbus A330 and Boeing 737 aircraft in it’s fleet.

According to their website, the airline has recently received several awards in the world of passenger travel including:

  • World’s Best Leisure Airline at the Skytrax World Airline Awards
  • Best Leisure/Charter Airline at the Agents’ Choice Awards
  • Voted Best Airline at the Trophées Uni-Vers awards

As for the A310 passenger experience with Air Transat we can look to online reviews such as one posted last year on TripAdvisor:

We chose partially because Air Transat uses A310’s which have rows at the rear of the plane with only 2 seats at the sides…The seven+ hour flight went smoothly and surprisingly didn’t seem too long. I would definitely book another Air Transat A310 flight going or coming from Europe.

Do you have any special memories of a journey aboard an Airbus A310? And do you have any plans to make a special journey to Canada to fly on the A310 before it completely disappears from service? We would love to hear from you. Let us know by leaving a comment!

  1. Flew a couple times to cross the Atlantic. Great plane and relatively comfortable even on the 3+3+3 Air Transat configuration.

  2. These Air Transat A310 wrecks have an average age of almost 29 years, and the oldest is 31 years old.
    It’s almost inconceivable that a “developed world” airline is still flying such ancient junk.
    Good riddance!

  3. Flew the A310 from Glasgow to Toronto in May 2019. We booked the 2by2 seats at the back. We found the seats roomy and comfortable and the toilets spacious. The lack of seat back tvs was the only real downfall, otherwise it was a pleasant experience.

  4. I flew the A310-300 many times, in the early 90s, in economy , business and first class, with RK (Air Afrique), between Abidjan and CDG or across West and Central Africa and down to Johannesburg.
    Other experiences with the A310-300 were with AF (business and economy), on the same routes between CDG and West Africa, SR in business (GVA-ABJ), LH in business (FRA-KRT), SQ (SIN-DPS in economy and ADL-SIN in business).
    The A310-300 was particularly well designed and fit for the RK network and was perfect for the flights between the west african coast and western europe.
    The RK A310-300s were featuring 12 F (1X2X1), 28 C (2X2X2) and 147 Y (2X4X2).
    RK had initially four frames (TU-TAC and TU-TAD went to SATA Int’l after the collapse of RK in 1998, TU-TAE went to Midwest Airlines of Egypt and TU-TAF went to Iran Air), but they also rent a few of them (TU-TAR, TU-TAU, F-OJAF and TU-TAZ).
    RK operated the first TATL ETOPS 120 flight from DKR to JFK with TU-TAE in July 1993, in replacement of its ageing DC-10-30.

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