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Qantas Welcomes Back First Airbus A380 Aircraft 593 Days After it Departed Sydney for Storage

Qantas welcomed back their first Airbus A380 on Tuesday, 573 days after it departed Sydney. The A380 arrived at approximately 15:00, after taking off from Dresden over 19 hours earlier, where it recently underwent scheduled maintenance for a new landing gear.

Qantas Airbus A380, Registration VH-OQB, Arrives in Sydney on Tuesday, November 9, 2021 After Spending Nearly Two Years in Storage - Courtesy Qantas

On Tuesday (November 9, 2021), Qantas announced the return of their first A380, flight number QF6023, which arrived in Sydney at approximately 15:00 local time, 573 days after departing Australia. The aircraft took off from Dresden over 19 hour earlier, where it underwent scheduled maintenance for a new landing gear after spending most of the last two years in storage. The aircraft, registration VH-OQB, named Hudson Fysh after one of Qantas’ founders, was originally expected to remain on long-term storage in the California until the endo of 2023. However, Qantas has since announced the return of five A380s with upgraded cabins ahead of schedule, with two to operate flights to Los Angeles from April 2022 and three to operate flights to London from November 2022. Qantas is now working to further accelerate the return of the A380s, with flights to London brought forward to July 2022. Additionally, a sixth aircraft will arrive before the end of 2022, with the remaining four A380s expected to return to service by early 2024.

Details and Flight Deck Crew of Qantas Ferry Flight Number QF6023 From Dresden to Sydney - Courtesy Qantas

In Tuesday’s announcement, Qantas’ Chief Pilot, Captain Richard Tobiano, said,

“The A380 is a fantastic aircraft and we are very excited to welcome it home today. The early return is symbolic of how quickly demand for international travel has bounced back and this aircraft will play a key role in preparing our crew to return to A380 flying operations in the new year. Many of our crew have found other jobs during the pandemic doing everything from working in vaccination hubs and hospital wards to driving buses and tractors, and painting houses. Over the next few months, pilots will undergo an extensive retraining period including simulator sessions, training flights and classroom courses to prepare for take-off.”

Qantas Airbus A380 'Hudson Fysh' Tail Number VH-OQB Arrives in Sydney on Tuesday, November 9, 2021 - Courtesy Qantas

While the A380 was out of service, the aircraft was maintained by Qantas engineers who carried out regular inspections before flying to Dresden earlier this year. Six of the carrier’s A380s have had an interior redesign featuring a new premium upper deck with a new supper club style lounge and brand-new seats across the Business Class and Premium Economy cabins, as well as a main deck refresh including new carpet and curtains. The remaining aircraft will be refitted prior to returning to service.

Qantas Airbus A380 Undergoes Gear Swing Procedure in Dresden - Courtesy Qantas

The 485-seat A380 is the only aircraft type in the Qanats fleet that offers a First Class cabin, which is popular with Frequent Flyers who enjoy comfortable suites with fully lie-flat seats, a premium Neil Perry multi-course dining experience, and an award-winning Australian wine cellar, as well PJ’s designed by Martin Grant.

Source: Qantas


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