Airlines Hi Fly offers first A380 for wet lease operations

  • Airbus

Portuguese wet-lease carrier Hi Fly has started operations with its new Airbus A380 aircraft. The airline is the first worldwide, to use the aircraft for such services.

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Hi Fly has also become the first operator to fly with a second-hand A380 aircraft. It presented its aircraft in a new livery to the public at the Farnborough International Airshow 2018 (FIA2018).

According to media reports, a European airline will become the first customer of Hi Fly´s A380 aircraft very soon.

The entry into services marks a new era for Airbus´ prestigious double-decker programme, that saw the first delivery of an A380 aircraft in October 2007. MSN006 was now returned by Singapore Airlines after 10 years of service. After discussions with potential customers for the aircraft, Airbus and Hi Fly signed a deal for the aircraft.

“From the beginning we knew it would be good for us to help build a market for second-hand aircraft [...] We think this is a great opportunity to show what the aircraft can do. There may be some airlines that were hesitant to commit long-term who can now try out an A380 and see what it can do for them. This could help create new routes and expand the market base.”

As ACMI operator, Hi Fly will lease the aircraft and crew to worldwide customers, that are in short-term need for additional capacity to meet the passenger demand. ACMI stands for aircraft, crew, maintenance and insurance.

The aircraft was painted in a special “Save the Coral Reefs” livery. The initiative is to call attention for saving and protecting the world´s seas. This campaign was set up by the Mirpuri Foundation.

“A big cause requires a big answer and now, the biggest commercial aircraft on the planet will be the one carrying this big message around the globe”, said Paulo Mirpuri, President of both Hi Fly and Mirpuri Foundation.

On the arrival of the A380 to Hi Fly´s fleet, Mirpuri commented: "We welcome the arrival of the Airbus A380 in our fleet and we are extremely happy with the market reaction so far on this new availability in our wet lease product offering.”

Hi Fly will configurate its A380 in a three-class configuration. Altogether, 471 passengers can be accommodated. 12 in First class, 60 in Business class and 399 in Economy class. The carrier has also the opportunity to transform the aircraft into a high-density configuration. Then, 853 passengers could be welcomed on board.

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