LONDON – Hi Fly (5K), the first charter airline to have an Airbus A380 in the world, has created extra cargo capacity on its A380 by removing economy seats from much of the aircraft. This is to meet the increased demand for cargo during the coronavirus crisis.
The specially configured aircraft now offers more than 300 square meters of cargo volume, for close to 60 tons of cargo. According to the photo released on the airline social media, apparently both decks of the plane were reconfigured.
Airbus A380 Cargo Conversion
The project to convert the “Whale” in a full cargo plane was promoted in early May by Lufthansa Technik (LH) that stated they even had a request from an A380 owner for such a conversion but declined to name the airline.
This kind of restyle is not new for this project as in the past Airbus itself proposed the Airbus A380F, later quit as only FedEx supported the cause.
Hi Fly A380 History
HiFly acquired the Airbus A380 after Singapore Airlines chose not to renew the lease on its first A380 after 10 years. The plane has the registration code 9H-MIP. It was painted in the special “Save the Coral Reefs” livery in collaboration with Mirpuri Foundation; and then leased to the airlines that needed it to cover mainly the Boeing 787 engines issues.
In the past months however they started using the A380 from China and back to help the countries that needed the PPE, after ending flights for humanitarian support in the past days it started missions for rempatriation flights.
About Hi Fly
Hi Fly is a charter airline with the headquarter in Lisbon, Portugal, and the aircraft base in Beja, Portugal, that started flight operations back in 2006.
The carrier has a mixed fleet of 2 Airbus A319, 2 Airbus A321, 9 Airbus A330-200 and -300, 2 Airbus A330-900, 6 Airbus A340-300, and 1 Airbus A380. 5K also used to have a few Airbus A340-500 and Airbus A310.