There’s nothing like a first aircraft delivery to an airline, and tomorrow will see one of these occur. Aeroflot, Russia’s flag carrier, is all set to take delivery of its very first Airbus A350 tomorrow.
Tchaikovsky is the name that adorns the first Airbus A350 to be built for Aeroflot. As opposed to the Russian carrier’s typical grey color scheme, this aircraft has instead been painted white. And it looks splendid. Now it is time for the aircraft to travel to Moscow ahead of its debut with the world’s most punctual carrier next month.
First of 14
Tomorrow Aeroflot will receive the symbolic keys to its first Airbus A350 at a ceremony in Toulouse. Here, the Russian airline is expected to reveal the interior of the aircraft to the world prior to the aircraft making its first voyage to its new home, Moscow.
Aeroflot had originally placed an order for the smaller Airbus A350-800, however, somewhere down the line the order was changed to an A350-900 order, and the -800 project was shelved. When it was first placed, the order was for 22 A350-800 aircraft, however, currently, it stands at 14 A350-900 aircraft.
What to expect
Once delivered, the Airbus A350 will begin its entry to service checks with the Aeroflot maintenance team in Moscow. Once it has received the all-clear, the aircraft will then begin flying passengers in late March, before the route network gradually expands as more and more aircraft are delivered.
The first passenger flight, as things stand, will see the aircraft flying from Moscow to Dubai for just under a week. These shorter flights will likely be used for crew familiarization. This is for good reason.
If something such as not being able to start the oven pops up on a shorter flight, it’s not the end of the world. However, on a longer flight, this could lead to some fairly unhappy passengers. In fact, when British Airways received its first A350-1000 last year, it debuted to Madrid for the first month or so. Meanwhile, Virgin Atlantic threw its first of the aircraft straight into New York flights.
Interestingly, after it’s short Dubai stint, Aeroflot will begin flying the A350 to New York from the 29th of March. Luther routes which the aircraft will eventually roll out with the aircraft include flights to Beijing, London, and Singapore among others. These new routes will slowly be added to the Aeroflot route portfolio as more aircraft are delivered and enter the Aeroflot fleet.
Simple Flying has a representative in Toulouse to bring you all the latest news from tomorrow’s festivities.
What do you make of the Aeroflot Airbus A350? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!