Just over two years ago, Japanese carrier ANA took delivery of its first Airbus A380. Now, the airline has revealed plans to celebrate its second anniversary of A380 operations, despite the type being largely grounded for the past year.
By now, almost everybody is aware that the majority of the global Airbus A380 fleet is grounded. Except for British Airways, most grounded A380s haven’t flown at all for most of the past year. However, this doesn’t apply to Japanese carrier All Nippon Airways, which has been operating regular charter sightseeing flights to nowhere with its fleet of the giant of the skies.
Happy Birthday A380
Japanese carrier All Nippon Airways is hosting a special one-off flight to celebrate two years of Airbus A380 operations. The flight is set to depart from Tokyo’s Narita Airport on Sunday, May 23rd, with tickets being available to Japanese residents through a lottery system. The lottery started today and will last until Friday, April 2nd.
As usual for such ANA A380 flights, the aircraft will carry passengers in all four cabins, with prices ranging from 34,000 yen ($312.59) for aisle seats in the economy cabin to 102,000 yen ($937.88) for first class seats.
All passengers will receive a boarding certificate and a souvenir, including an ANA A380 bag, a face towel, and an Airbus A380 fridge magnet. Those in higher classes than economy will also receive other gifts. For example, those in first class will get a 1:200 model of the plane.
The airline will serve everybody a meal on the flight. Interestingly, on all previous A380 flights to nowhere, ANA has offered a symbolic 380 frequent flyer points. However, to mark the special occasion of the second anniversary of flights, it is being doubled to 720 points.
Two years of A380 operations
It’s hard to believe that it was over two years ago that ANA took delivery of its first Airbus A380 in Toulouse, France. Back then, nobody could’ve imagined the current state of the industry. Three A380s were intended to join the fleet, operating solely on Tokyo Narita’s tourist route to Honolulu International Airport.
While the airline hasn’t been able to operate this flight with full loads, the A380s have been mainly grounded. According to RadarBox.com, the first A380, JA381A, operated 38 flights in February 2020 and 32 in March of that year. Since then, it has operated five such flights to nowhere. It is currently in Xiamen for maintenance.
Meanwhile, JA382A, the second A380, operated 44 flights in February 2020, followed by 38 flights in March 2020. Since the fleet was grounded, it has completed five flights to nowhere. The third and final A380, JA383A, has been delivered to ANA on paper. However, it remains in the care of Airbus for the time being.
Did you get a chance to fly on the Airbus A380 so far? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!