Azul’s only two Airbus A350s have no flights scheduled from January 23rd

The Brazilian carrier’s largest aircraft has been the target of rumors about deactivation due to high operating costs

The history of the Airbus A350 at Brazilian airline Azul has been marked by ups and downs.

The widebody was ordered almost ten years ago when the company was planning its international debut, but almost close to receiving them, Azul changed plans and replaced them for the smaller and cheaper A330-900.

The acquired aircraft, some of which were already partially completed by Airbus, ended up flying with other carriers until in 2022 the airline decided to operate these widebodies again, amid the resurgence in demand for long-haul flights.

Four stored A350-900s were then associated with Azul. The first of them, registered PR-AOY, landed in Brazil in September 2022, and the second, PR-AOW, in December, and were soon placed on the route between Campinas, its largest hub, and Orlando, in the US.

The first aircraft arrived in Brazil in September 2022 (Azul)

In April, Azul launched its new destination, Paris (Orly), and deployed the two A350s to exclusively serve the route.

Meanwhile, the other two jets, which would receive the registration PR-AOW and PR-AOZ, continued to be prepared for delivery, although the company never confirmed that they would in fact be included in the fleet.

In June, however, the A350 situation showed signs that it would change again. The two aircraft pending delivery appeared listed as future deliveries to Iberia, according to Planespotters.

In the end, one of the aircraft was transferred to Thai Airways and the other was taken from Tarbes, France, to Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates in August.

Azul A330-900neo (Airbus)

Final flights in January?

Rumors grew at the same time, stating that Azul intended to remove the two A350s from service due to the high operating costs. In their place, the company would once again reinforce the A330-200 fleet.

However, Airbus’ most advanced widebody continued flying for the Brazilian airline. In October, the aircraft was reinstated on flights to Orlando, but it currently flies the Campinas-Paris route daily.

One of the jets, PR-AOY, suffered a breakdown in mid-November and was out of service for several days, but is scheduled to take over the flight to Paris on Thursday, December 7th.

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Despite this, the future of the A350 at Azul seems to be leaving the scene. According to slot data from Viracopos Airport, the aircraft no longer has confirmed flights as of January 23, 2024.

From this date onwards, Azul will only use its A330-200 and A330-900 on flights to Paris. And with that, passengers say goodbye to the 334 seats and the comfort and technology of the A350.

Will this be the end of the A350’s short career at Azul? Probably, but it is wise to wait for the next developments to know for sure. The history of the aircraft and the airline always seems to hold surprises.


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