Japanese carrier All Nippon Airways is finally set to take physical delivery of its last Airbus A380. The aircraft is set to fly to Tokyo in mid-October, a year after being delivered on paper and two years after it took its first flight in Toulouse.
Officially, Airbus only has three A380 aircraft left to deliver. All three are bound for the largest A380 airline, Emirates, and should be delivered by November. However, there is a fourth Airbus A380 that remains in the care of Airbus despite having been delivered on paper almost a year ago.
JA383A is finally being delivered
It’s been a lonely wait for JA383A. The aircraft was initially planned to be delivered to ANA in May 2020. However, as we all know by now, the last thing airlines wanted was a new aircraft, let alone a gigantic Airbus A380. ANA negotiated with Airbus to delay the aircraft’s delivery until October 30th, 2020.
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Even once the giant had been legally delivered to ANA, it didn’t fly to its new home at Tokyo Narita Airport. Instead, the aircraft has been patiently sitting and waiting in Toulouse, with the occasional flight to keep its engines ticking.
All of this is set to change in October. An ANA spokesperson confirmed to Simple Flying that the jet in the ‘turtley awesome’ orange livery is finally set to fly out to Japan in mid-October, yet the exact date remains unconfirmed.
According to data from AIB Family, the aircraft has already completed 12 flights before delivery. This means that the aircraft has already racked up 26 hours and 46 minutes of flight time. ch-aviation.com gives its current market value at $89.21 million.
What will the aircraft do in Japan?
So, what will the Airbus A380 do once it arrives in Japan? For the time being, it seems as though the aircraft will continue to sit on the ground for significant periods of the day, albeit with a different view. ANA is only interested in flying its Airbus A380s between Tokyo and Honolulu as far as scheduled passenger services go.
While the airline did operate a couple of A380 rotations to Honolulu in August, these aren’t currently planned any time soon. According to schedule information from aviation data experts Cirium, ANA has no scheduled A380 flights scheduled until January 12th, 2022. Of course, this could be pushed back further, depending on how demand recovers in the coming months. Filling an Airbus A380 is a more challenging task than a Boeing 787-9.
In the meantime, ANA has been running a series of charter flights with its A380s within Japan. These have been for short domestic vacations, alongside flights to nowhere. Recently, one of the A380s faced a short takeoff delay after a tortoise wandered onto the runway at Narita Airport.
Are you excited to see that the two-year-old jet finally heading home? Let us know what you think and why in the comments!