Follow the first of BA’s remaining 747s as it flies to retirement in Spain
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It’s the start of the end for BA’s fleet of the Queen of the Sky.
British Airways announced in July that it would be retiring all of its remaining 31 Boeing 747s in the coming months. The first of those 747s to say farewell is 25-year-old G-CIVD, which departed London Heathrow at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday.
The final resting place for “Victor Delta” will be Castellon de la Plana (CDT) in Spain, where she is scheduled to arrive at 1:06 p.m. local time To follow her final journey, click here.
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Prior to the coronavirus pandemic, British Airways’ initial plan was to retire the remaining fleet of 747s by 2024. Due to the expected long recovery time for aviation demand, BA made the decision to retire the entire fleet immediately instead. Not only is the demand for travel on these superjumbos not there, but these aircraft are old, need frequent maintenance and their four, fuel-guzzling engines are far from carbon efficient, so the decision made sense on BA’s part in order to conserve cash.
As is the case for airlines across the world, British Airways continues to suffer the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. In monetary terms, the airline’s parent company International Airlines Group has reported a significant £3.8 billion first-half loss, even after making several changes to the business including cutting routes and letting go of thousands of staff.
Though BA’s 747s were very old and the IFE was often iffy to say the least, it’s the nostalgia and the sheer elegance of this famous jumbo jet that will be missed by frequent flyers, AvGeeks and BA crew for years to come.
Featured image by Matthew Horwood/Getty Images
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