Airlines Delta Air Lines to phase out 747-400s by the end of 2017
- Delta Air Lines
As Delta Air Lines will retire it´s Boeing 747 fleet by the end of December 2017, the passenger version of the legendary Jumbo-Jet will get even rarer.
On Sunday, 17 December 2017 the last commercial Boeing 747 flight by an American airline will land at Detroit. Delta Air Lines flight DL158 inbound from Seoul-Incheon is expected to touch down at 10:14 a.m., marking the end of an era. The following days, Delta will take the B747 on an employee farewell tour to the main Delta hubs at Seattle, Atlanta and Minneapolis. By 31 December 2017 the 747 will be used for ad-hoc charter flights, until the 376-seater will fly to an airplane scrapyard in Arizona in early January. Employees can bid for a spot on the farewell-flights, while the ferry flight to Marana (Arizona) will not be open to passengers. Delta flew the Boeing 747 on various models: The 747-100, 747-200 and 747-400. In September 1970, Deltas first Jumbo Jet was delivered. Now, the Delta 747 fleet consists of 6 747-400, with an average age of 26 years.
As of right now, only about 210 passenger and VIP 747 are still active. The following list shows the Top 10 airlines with active passenger 747 service:
|KLM – Royal Dutch Airlines||14|
|Delta Air Lines||6|
|El Al Israel Airlines||6|
The 747-400 will disappear from the skies more and more. While Lufthansa, Virgin Atlantic, Korean Air, Air China, KLM and Qantas announced to gradually phase out its 747-400 in the next years, Thai Airways will keep their -400´s until 2022. Recently, British Airways announced to retire its 747-400 by 2024. On the other hand, El Al Israel Airlines and Delta Air Lines will retire the 747-400 by the end of this year. Though, all active 747-8 will remain airworthy for many years. With the Boeing 747-8 Boeing developed the third generation of the B747 and a successor for the aging B747-400. The new version is the largest commercial aircraft built in the United States and the longest aircraft in the world. Until now only 135 aircraft have been ordered and only Lufthansa, Korean Air and Air China have placed orders for the passenger version. Largest operator is the German Lufthansa with 19 aircraft in service. Boeing has received over 80 orders for the cargo version B747-8F.
Source © Delta Air Lines