Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr revealed during the IATA General Assembly in Doha that the possible return of the Airbus A380 to operation will be decided by the end of July.
“We need about nine months lead time to prepare for the summer 2023 schedule, so we will have to decide to bring back the A380 before the summer break, so before I go on vacation,” said the German airline’s chief executive.
Lufthansa had 14 A380s in service, but six of them will be returned to Airbus in October while the remaining eight are in storage.
Due to the growing demand for long-distance air travel, Lufthansa is short of aircraft for these flights. The situation was exacerbated by the delay in deliveries of Boeing’s 787-9 and 777-9 jets, which would fill part of the gap left by the A380.
Recently, Spohr admitted that rescuing the largest passenger plane in the world could be an alternative to meet high demand routes such as flights to the United States.
For this, the company will need to train pilots since there are currently only 14 crew members able to fly the A380. The solution should be the qualification of A350 pilots, explained the CEO.
The other alternative studied by Lufthansa is to rely on the Boeing 777-300ER, an aircraft that the group operates in subsidiaries such as Swiss.
New regional jet
Spohr also commented on the upcoming order for a regional jet to replace the Embraer E-Jets and Mitsubishi CRJs. According to him, Lufthansa evaluated the E2 model, but that the project was postponed without a defined deadline.