Rumor: Emirates To Retire 40% Of Its Airbus A380 Fleet & Cancel Remaining Orders

According to several sources, Emirates plans to retire 40% of its Airbus A380 fleet.

Emirates is rumored to be permanently retiring 40% of its A380 fleet, or around 46 aircraft. The decision is expected to be formally announced within a few days.

Since COVID-19 caused air travel to plummet, the world’s largest operator of the A380 has grounded its entire fleet of 115 Airbus A380s. Just two weeks ago, Emirates’ President, Sir Tim Clark, declared “The A380 is over” in an interview.

This decision is reasonable as air travel demand will likely not return for several years so the immense capacity coming from the A380 won’t be needed.

On top of the potential retirement of some A380s, Emirates is supposedly in talks with Airbus to cancel orders for five remaining A380s. Emirates currently has 8 on order but will take 3 of these 8.

Assuming Emirates takes delivery of its aircraft on time, they’ll have a few Boeing 777Xs and potentially some A350s and 787-9s by the time demand fully recovers.


Source: Exclusive: Emirates to Permanently Decommission 40% of Airbus A380 Fleet, Axe Nearly a Third of Cabin Crew and Pilots
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Image: Airbus A380-841 - Emirates (Airbus) | Aviation Photo #0969902 |

Unfortunately, this decision was honestly imminent following Emirates’ President’s statement that “the A380 is over”. Going forward, Emirates’ future will likely rely on lower capacity aircraft instead of the superjumbo. If this decision goes through, this could spark a movement with other airlines to retire some of their A380 fleets early as well. Qantas, Qatar Airways, Air France, and a few others have already hinted at early retirement.


One emoji describes this: 😣


This was coming though. The A380 was never as successful as Airbus had hoped for. And now with the current global situation it was only a matter of time.


I felt this, the demand is just not there, it is not worth it for the Airline.

I can see the A380 being completely phased out across all airlines that operate them

Oh gosh. I felt this one in the heary. Emirates the largest A380 operator thats crazy.

And the A380 isn’t even their biggest problem - it’s the fact that they’re an international airline. The domestic carriers are going to be affected but not nearly as drastically as international ones. Emirates is in for a lot of trouble.

The A380 still has a future, albeit, a bleak one. We could see it’s operations relegated to trunk routes like SIN, JNB, JFK, LHR, FRA, HKG, BKK, SYD only. The days of seeing the A380 at smaller airports like PRG, VIE etc most likely will come to an end.

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Right on the money. The 380 has always been rumored to be a dying breed. Too expensive to operate. Not a money maker in the least. COVID-19 is expediting it’s extinction.

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A sad reality, with Emirates being the only airline that has made sustainable profit out of the A380 I thought they could continue using them widely until the mid-2030s, but as others above had said it seems they will only now be used for the densely packed routes. This is going to come sooner rather than later now, but I hope this rumour is just as true as the “Emirates and Etihad Merger” and Emirates find a way to extend their use of the A380s widely for as long as possible. I’m interested to see how Emirates are going to configure their new planes though as I’m sure they’ll want to replicate the A380s on-board lounge somehow on their next staple aircraft. But with Emirates rumoured to slowly phase out the A380, this truly marks the beginning of the end of this aircraft :(

Will also be sad for Dubai to be no-longer called “A380 land” anymore and the unused upper-deck gates in Concourse A not in use.

From Air France’s A380 to Lufthansa’s A380, there was also this piece earlier today:

Emirates is supposedly in talks with Airbus to cancel 5 of 8 remaining Airbus A380 orders.

Hey all I am super annoyed at emirates because they are the ones who have the best biz class (in my opinion). They also used the A380 to connect my home town to spain via Dubai. I am not very happy but neither surprised especially due to this crisis with lower travel demand. A possible idea is that they could fill the plane with biz class and a more premium ecconomy. Still cheap but more comfortable like AA’s premium economy, and they could charge lower prices for this design and lower fuel costs :)

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