Unlike a few other airlines who are retiring their A380 fleet, Qatar Airways has not announced any plans to retire theirs.
Instead, the airline has announced that the fleet is now commercially unviable and environmentally unjustifiable to operate.
As many airlines re-adjust and put new plans into place ready for the post-Coronavirus world, double-decker aircraft such as the Airbus A380 and Boeing 747 are taking massive hits.
Is this the end for the A380 Fleet?
Qatar hasn’t stopped flying since the Coronavirus pandemic began, and even though the airline has said they are unviable, they still have no plans to retire them from the fleet.
Alternatively, they have been removed from the schedule for the remainder of the year. It is not known when they are expected to return, especially with travel demand expected to be significantly reduced.
In a statement released last week, the carrier CEO said:
“As we rebuild our network, passengers can rely on us to operate an honest schedule of flights to take them where they want to go, using the right size aircraft to offer sensible capacity on each route.
As a result, we will not resume flying our fleet of A380 until demand returns to appropriate levels.”
So, what will replace the A380?
Qatar will be following in the steps of many other airlines who are opting towards using the more efficient Airbus A350 and Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
When comparing the A380 and A350 together, the A350 wins by a significant margin. Analyses conducted by Qatar showed that on one of their routes, the A380 emitted over 80% more CO2 per block than the A350.
The A350 saved over 16 tonnes of carbon dioxide per block hour compared to the A380.
The remainder of the widebody fleet is still operational. Qatar Airways will be sending the Boeing 787 on routes to Europe and the A350 to Europe and further afield.
What are your thoughts? Should the ‘double-decker’ aircraft continue to fly? Let us know in the comments.