British Airways’ First Boeing 777 Retired Having Flown Almost 50 Million Miles

British Airways has retired its first Boeing 777-200. The aircraft, registered as G-ZZZC was delivered to the airline on the 11th of November 1995 and has since flown almost 50 million miles across the world.

Boeing 777, British Airways, Retirement
British Airways has retired its first Boeing 777 (not pictured). Photo: Tom Boon – Simple Flying

The Boeing 777 is the backbone of the British Airways long haul fleet. However, as some are approaching a quarter of a century old, the airline is looking to start retiring the older ones. This started yesterday with G-ZZZC, the first Boeing 777 that was delivered to the airline, and only the sixth 777 to be delivered worldwide according to Planespotters.net.

It also has an interesting registration. British Airways told us that ZZZ was chosen, as it looks incredibly similar to the number 777. Now, the aircraft has been flown to St Athans, where it will be scrapped.

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Quite the lifetime

In its 24 years of service for the British flag carrier, G-ZZZC has been quite the work-horse. British Airways told Simple Flying that, in its lifetime, the Boeing 777 has flown for 20,663 cycles. In this time it has flown for an amazing 100,311 hours, visiting countries all over the world.

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While no records of how far the aircraft has flown, or how many passengers it has carried are readily available, British Airways did crunch the numbers for us. The British flag carrier estimates that the Boeing 777 has flown a total of 48,747,470 miles. If the aircraft was a rocket ship, it could have made 117 return flights to the moon.

Boeing 777, British Airways, Retirement
The aircraft had flown almost 50 million miles. Photo: Tom Boon – Simple Flying

However, an incredible number of passengers have flown onboard the aircraft. British Airways believes that G-ZZZC has flown somewhere in the region of 3,809,265 passengers.

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Final flights

The aircraft’s final passenger rotation saw it head down to Abuja, the capital city of Nigeria. It departed for the journey on the 11th of January. This flight saw it in the skies for five and a half hours, landing in Abuja at 05:15 on the 12th.

Following its final few hours on foreign soil, the aircraft departed Abuja at 09:22. After six hours in the skies, it touched down for the final time at London Heathrow Airport at 14:22.

Boeing 777, British Airways, Retirement
G-ZZZC gets prepared for its final flight. Photo: @RampRatRick via Twitter

The aircraft then remained on the ground for its last night at Heathrow, where it had spent the majority of the last 24 years. At 10:07 yesterday, the Boeing 777 took off from Heathrow bound for its final resting place. This was St Athan near Cardiff. Towards the end of last year, Simple Flying reported about a Boeing 747 which was flown here for retirement.

The aircraft reached a height of 13,000 feet, however, spent far more time descending than the climb and the cruise combined. At 10:47, just 40 minutes after leaving Heathrow, the aircraft touched down for the final time, set to be stripped of valuable parts, and then scrapped.

Did you fly on G-ZZZC during its life in service? Let us know where it took you and what you remember in the comments!

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High Mile Club

Kinda wish they’d sell it to a museum.

ATS

I have flown on G-ZZZC, actually, from BOS-LHR about a year ago. What a miserable airplane. Old and the seats had not been replaced for quite some time. I was on a 777-200ER on the way back and it was much nicer – the seats were noticeably newer and the engines were quieter. Still, I hope they order a bunch of 777-8x planes or more 787s to replace the 777s because they’re getting old.

Paul Spindler

Wasn’t the first one retired G-ZZZA ?

Paul Spindler

Sorry I mean G-ZZZD

Richard

ZZD and ZZE departed the fleet many years ago. Flew many times on these 5 original 777s to the Gulf.from Heathrow. A new standard when introduced replacing the 757 and having individual entertainment screens. Happy days.

Gerry S

An a/c with this many miles of faithful service should be in a museum, I agree, right there alongside an A340.

Russ

An Airbus with 103,000 hours???? A320’s are only certified up to 49,500 flight hours. Can be extended with aggressive maintenance…. heck a Boeing is just nicely broken in !

Pesjaner

It’s the number of landings that counts. Probably a short haul arplane makes much more landings in its lifetime!

Russ

Off topic – but almost every time I view something on this site I am getting a pop-up ad ostensibly from Cox Communications asking me to take a survey, for which I will be compensated with a “gift” worth about $1,000. THIS IS SPAM, and is being fed to your readers by MALWARE that has become embedded in your site.

PLEASE CLEAN IT UP ASAP !!

Chuck

I have experienced the same pop-up on numerous occasions while viewing Simple Flying

Joe

3,809,265 passengers in uncomfortable seats experiencing dreadful in-flight service.

Dean Elliott

I flew on it’s first return flight to the UK from Muscat.

Russell Cruickshank

I flew ZZC on Dec. 2, 2013 from Doha to Bahrain and on to LHR. I sat in the very back (as it had the dual seat pairs as opposed to triples everywhere else). It was a pleasant flight and crew but honestly even then it felt stodgy and old as an aircraft. But I do LOVE the 772!

janne

My first flight with a 777 New York -Heathrow