Tag Archives: Boeing 747-400

Air France to release a new round of cuts after failing to reach an agreement with its pilots

Air France (Paris) plans to announce a new round of cuts after failing to reach a new agreement with its pilots according to the Wall Street Journal. The airline was seeking to find cost savings of $190 million annually for the next three years but the pilots refused to fly more hours for the same pay.

Read the full report: Read the Full Story (LRW)

Copyright Photo: Manuel Negrerie/AirlinersGallery.com. Air France is due to operate the last Boeing 747-400 revenue flight on January 11, 2016, ending a long historic run with the 747. However if the carrier follows through on further deeper cuts the type could be retired sooner. Boeing 747-428 F-GITF (msn 25602) departs from the Paris (CDG) hub.

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Aeroflot will not proceed with the acquisition of Transaero, will end operations on December 15

Aeroflot Russian Airlines (Moscow) will not proceed with its acquisition of 75 percent of the stock of rival and struggling Transaero Airlines (Moscow) according to Reuters. Transaero’s shareholders failed to meet the deadline for an acquisition plan.

Read the full report: Read the Full Story (LRW)

Meanwhile the Russian government has given its approval for Transaero to file for bankruptcy according to rt.com.

Read the full report: Read the Full Story (LRW)

The airline has acknowledged on social media that it is “rehabilitating its activities” and would have more details later today.

According to Bloomberg the airline’s creditors have not yet agreed on a restructuring plan. The government has banned the airline from selling any further tickets due to its large debt.

Aeroflot will reportedly stopped buying fuel for Transaero aircraft which affectively grounds the airline.

Read the full report:  Read the Full Story (LRW)

Update: On October 2, 2015 Transaero Airlines issued this statement:

Transaero (2015) logo


Upon the decision of the Government of the Russian Federation on external management and sanation of Transaero Airlines, the carrier interacts with the partners to ensure the carriage of the passengers holding the tickets of the airline.

The airline has suspended ticket sales.

The transportation of passengers-holders of the airline’s tickets on domestic and international routes will be provided until December 15, 2015.

Passengers-holders of tickets for flights after 00.00 of December 15, 2015, will be able to get refund of the full ticket price.

In summary, Transaero Airlines will cease operations at midnight on December 15, 2015.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Antalya, Turkey is a favorite destination for the carrier and its uses Boeing 747-400s to bring large loads of Russian tourists to the popular beach resort. Flights are now being delayed from leaving Antalya (AYT). Boeing 747-446 EI-XLG (msn 30111) taxies at AYT.

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Delta retires the first-built Northwest Boeing 747-400, will go to the Delta Flight Museum

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) yesterday (September 9) retired its pictured Boeing 747-451 N661US (msn 23719), the first Boeing 747-400 built for Northwest Airlines-NWA (Minneapolis/St. Paul). Ship 6301 was retired as  flight DL 836 from Honolulu to Atlanta according to Delta. Delta issued this story and photo of the historic last flight:

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Ship 6301 will move to the Delta Flight Museum, where it will become the latest aircraft exhibit.

On September 9 Delta retired the first Boeing 747-400 aircraft ever delivered to a commercial airline, after its final flight from Honolulu to Atlanta.

Delta Ship 6301 made its first flight with Northwest Airlines in December 1989, and has logged more than 61 million miles, enough to make 250 trips from the Earth to the moon. Northwest later merged with Delta.

Known as the “Queen of the Skies,” the 747 is one of the most popular and recognizable aircraft in the world today. When the first 747 made its first commercial flight 45 years ago, critics thought the aircraft would soon become obsolete as designers believed that supersonic aircraft would be taking over the skies. However, the four-engine jumbo jet revolutionized the industry with its exceptional long-haul flight capability and sheer size, nearly three times larger than the largest jet flying at the time.

The 747 ushered in a new era of international travel with luxuries and, at one time, features such as spiral staircases to the upper deck and stand-alone piano bars.

The improved 747-400 featured a new glass cockpit, tail fuel tanks, advanced engines and a new interior.

747-400 model is called a “high-tech” jumbo to distinguish its advanced features from its predecessor, the “classic jumbo” of the -100 to -300 series. 747-400s have been flown from the U.S. to numerous long-haul destinations including Amsterdam, Tel Aviv, Honolulu, Shanghai, Seoul, Tokyo, and Manila during the past 26 years.

As Delta continues to modernize its fleet and improve its Pacific network, the airline plans to retire the remaining 12 747s in its fleet by 2017, replacing them with smaller, more fuel-efficient aircraft that will enable the airline to operate a wider variety of routes, particularly in Asian markets.

The final flight of ship 6301 was flight DL 836. The full flight took off from Honolulu on time (see the video below) while the entire Delta team saw off the beloved aircraft.

Delta crew of N661US (Delta)(LR)

Above Photo: Delta. The cabin crew of the last revenue flight of N661US.

Following its final flight, Ship 6301 was welcomed home to Atlanta early on September 9.

Delta Chief 747 pilot Steve Hanlon said the 747-400 was affectionately known as “The Whale” among pilots­. “Even as large as the Whale was, it was surprisingly maneuverable and fast, typically cruising at .86 the speed of sound with close to 400 people onboard.”

Following its retirement, Ship 6301 is scheduled to take a final journey in early 2016 to the Delta Flight Museum, where it will become the latest aircraft exhibit.

Delta Flight Museum logo

Interesting the Jumbo, while with Northwest Airlines, was involved in an in-flight event. Flight NW 85 was a flight from Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport to Tokyo’s Narita International Airport. According to Wikipedia, the flight experienced a rudder hardover event on October 9, 2002 when the flight was close to Anchorage, Alaska. The flight diverted to Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. No passengers or crew were injured.

NWA-Northwest logo

N661US was delivered to Northwest Airlines as the launch customer of this type on December 8, 1989. Boeing originally showcased the new model as N401PW from April 29, 1988 until it was handed over to Northwest.

Top Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. N661US taxies at Amsterdam in Delta’s colors.

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Bottom Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. N661US arrives at Tokyo (Narita) in Northwest colors.

Video: Video of the last takeoff from Honolulu and the historical last flight:


Virgin Atlantic moves the last Boeing 747-400 flight at London Heathrow to February

Virgin Atlantic Airways (London), as previously reported, is phasing out its venerable Boeing 747-400 at London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR). According to an update by Airline Route, the last Boeing 747-400 arrival at LHR is now scheduled for February 21, 2016 instead of April 17, 2016.

The last flight is expected to be flight VS006 from Miami to LHR arriving on the morning of February 21.

The type will continue to be operated from London’s Gatwick Airport.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747-41R G-VROC (msn 32746) climbs away from London’s Heathrow Airport.

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Atlas Air Worldwide reports second quarter adjusted net income of $29.4 million

Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. (Atlas Air and Polar Air Cargo) (New York) today announced adjusted net income attributable to common stockholders of $29.4 million, or $1.17 per diluted share, for the three months ended June 30, 2015, compared with $15.9 million, or $0.63 per diluted share, for the three months ended June 30, 2014.

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On a reported basis, net income attributable to common stockholders in the second quarter of 2015 totaled $28.4 million, or $1.13 per diluted share, compared with $29.6 million, or $1.17 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter.

Free cash flow of $68.5 million in the second quarter of 2015 compared with $59.2 million in the second quarter of 2014.

“Earnings in the second quarter were driven by contribution and margin strength in ACMI, Charter and Dry Leasing,” said William J. Flynn, President and Chief Executive Officer.

“We are seeing good demand for our aircraft and services as we enter the second half of 2015, as many of our customers are outperforming the overall market. We are working closely with our customers to provide them with the most efficient aircraft and effective operating services for their needs.

“As we gather additional insight into second-half demand, yields and military requirements, we continue to look forward to a strong year and a significant increase in earnings compared with 2014.”

Responding to market demand and customer requirements, we are implementing several previously announced fleet initiatives that are incorporated in our framework outlook for the year: placing an additional 747-400 freighter in ACMI service with DHL Express at the start of the third quarter; acquiring a new 747-8 freighter scheduled to be delivered to us in November; returning an owned, unencumbered 747-400 converted freighter to active service to meet additional Charter demand; securing a short-term operating lease on a second 747-400 converted freighter in Charter with more favorable terms; and expanding our Titan Dry Leasing portfolio by acquiring and converting two 767 passenger aircraft into freighter configuration. The freighters will be leased to DHL on a long-term basis when they are delivered in the fourth quarter.


Second-Quarter Results

Revenue and direct contribution in ACMI in the second quarter benefited from an increase in block hour volumes, driven by the start-up of four additional 767 CMI aircraft and an improvement in 747 cargo aircraft utilization. Segment contribution also benefited from lower heavy maintenance expense. These were partially offset by a reduction in revenue per block hour, which reflected the impact of payments received from a customer in 2014 in connection with the return of an aircraft as well as an increase in CMI flying in 2015.

In Charter, significantly higher segment revenues reflected an increase in commercial cargo demand and improvements in military passenger and cargo demand. In addition, segment contribution benefited from those higher flying levels and a reduction in heavy maintenance expense. The decrease in revenue per block hour was primarily driven by the impact of lower fuel prices.

In Dry Leasing, revenue and profitability grew as we realized revenue from maintenance payments related to the scheduled return of a 757-200 cargo aircraft in April. This aircraft was subsequently leased to DHL Express on a long-term basis during the quarter.

Reported earnings for the second quarter of 2015 included an effective income tax rate of 31.0%, which reflected our continued reinvestment of the net earnings of certain foreign subsidiaries outside of the U.S.

Half-Year Results

For the six months ended June 30, 2015, adjusted net income attributable to common stockholders totaled $55.2 million, or $2.20 per diluted share, compared with $27.1 million, or $1.07 per diluted share, for the six months ended June 30, 2014.

On a reported basis, first-half 2015 net income attributable to common stockholders totaled $57.6 million, or $2.29 per diluted share, compared with $37.5 million, or $1.49 per diluted share, in the first half of 2014.

Free cash flow totaled $148.8 million in the first six months of 2015 compared with $96.1 million in the first six months of 2014.

Liquidity and Capital Resources

At June 30, 2015, our cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash and short-term investments totaled $554.9 million, compared with $330.7 million at December 31, 2014.

The change in position reflected net cash of $171.1 million provided by operating activities; net cash of $104.4 million provided by financing activities, which included $99.1 million of debt payments; and net cash of $59.4 million used for investing activities.

In June 2015, we issued $224.5 million of convertible senior notes due June 2022 with a cash coupon of 2.25%. We used a portion of the approximately $218 million of net proceeds from the offering in June to fund the $16.6 million net cost of convertible note hedges and warrants related to the notes. These transactions are intended to offset any actual dilution from the conversion of the notes and to effectively increase the overall conversion price from $74.05 to $95.01 per share.

During the third quarter of 2015, we expect to use approximately $113 million of the net proceeds to retire higher-rate Enhanced Equipment Trust Certificates (EETCs) related to five of our 747-400 freighter aircraft. The redemption amount gives effect to the company’s ownership interests in the EETCs being retired, which have an average cash coupon of 8.1%.

We expect to use the remaining net proceeds from the convertible note issuance for working capital and capital expenditures, repayment or refinancing of debt, and general corporate purposes.


We are encouraged by our strong first-half performance. We are seeing good demand for our aircraft and services this quarter and for the remainder of the year. And we continue to anticipate significant growth in adjusted diluted earnings per share in 2015.

On a sequential basis, we expect earnings per share in the third quarter of 2015 to be slightly better than our second-quarter 2015 adjusted earnings, followed by further earnings improvement in the fourth quarter.

Taking our first-half 2015 earnings strength into account, we continue to expect approximately 55% of our earnings to occur in the second half.

In addition, we anticipate that block-hour volumes this year will increase approximately 10% compared with 2014, including the impact of the 747-8 freighter scheduled to be delivered in November and 747-400BCF that we returned to service at the end of the second quarter. More than 70% of our total block hours should be in ACMI and the balance in Charter. Our ACMI outlook reflects expected growth in both 747 freighter operations as well as CMI flying. Our Charter outlook reflects our strong presence in the global charter market and military demand that is holding up well compared with 2014 levels.

In Dry Leasing, our portfolio is expected to include our recent acquisition and subsequent conversion of two 767 passenger aircraft to freighter configuration. Following their conversion, which should be completed during the fourth quarter of this year, the aircraft will be leased to DHL Express.

Given the flying levels that we anticipate, we continue to expect that aircraft maintenance expense in 2015 should total approximately $190 million. In addition, depreciation should be approximately $125 million. We also anticipate an effective income tax rate of approximately 30%. Core capital expenditures, excluding aircraft and engine purchases, are expected to total approximately $45 million, mainly for spare parts for our fleet. Expenditures for additional aircraft and engines should total approximately $240 million.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Polar Air Cargo’s Boeing 747-46NF N454PA (msn 30812) in DHL colors departs from scenic Anchorage, Alaska.

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United Airlines announces its highest-ever quarterly profit

United Airlines (Chicago) today reported its largest quarterly profit ever, reporting a second quarter 2015 net profit of $1.3 billion, or $3.31 per diluted share, excluding $67 million of special items.

The company issued this report:

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United Airlines (UAL) today reported second-quarter 2015 net income of $1.3 billion, or $3.31 per diluted share, excluding $67 million of special items. Including special items, UAL reported second-quarter net income of $1.2 billion, or $3.14 per diluted share. These results are a record quarterly profit for the company.

  • The company’s Board of Directors authorized an additional $3 billion share repurchase program, which the company expects to complete by the end of 2017.
  • In the quarter, UAL prepaid approximately $800 million of debt, contributed approximately $620 million to its pension plans and returned approximately $250 million to shareholders as part of its existing $1 billion share buyback program.
  • UAL earned an 18.2 percent return on invested capital for the 12 months ended June 30, 2015.

“This quarter’s record results reflect the progress we’re making on our long-term plan, and I’d like to thank the United team for their great work,” said Jeff Smisek, UAL’s chairman, president and chief executive officer. “The $3 billion share repurchase program we announced today demonstrates the confidence we have in our future. We will continue to invest in our customers, assets and our people, and remain committed to improving our balance sheet, expanding our margins and improving our return on invested capital, and expect our third quarter pre-tax margin to be between 13.5 and 15.5 percent, excluding special items.”

Second-Quarter Revenue and Capacity

For the second quarter of 2015, total revenue was $9.9 billion, a decrease of 4 percent year-over-year. Second-quarter consolidated passenger revenue decreased 3.4 percent to $8.7 billion, compared to the same period in 2014. Ancillary revenue per passenger in the second quarter increased 6.7 percent year-over-year. Second-quarter cargo revenue decreased 1.3 percent year-over-year to $229 million. Other revenue in the second quarter decreased 9.6 percent year-over-year, mostly due to the reduction in sales of fuel to a third party. The corresponding expense decline from this reduction appears in third-party business expense.

Consolidated revenue passenger miles increased 0.7 percent and consolidated available seat miles increased 2.3 percent year-over-year for the second quarter, resulting in a second-quarter consolidated load factor of 83.9 percent.

Second-quarter 2015 consolidated PRASM decreased 5.6 percent and consolidated yield decreased 4.1 percent compared to the second quarter of 2014.

“This quarter, we continued to build and refine our route network, including announcing the move of p.s. transcontinental service to our global gateway hub at Newark Liberty Airport and forming a long-term partnership with Azul Brazilian Airlines. These decisions will enhance our network and provide our customers with more choice and convenience,” said Jim Compton, UAL’s vice chairman and chief revenue officer. “We will continue to improve our leading network by focusing on our strengths, while investing in our people, fleet and products to increase revenue and deliver a flyer-friendly customer experience.”

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Javier Rodriguez/AirlinersGallery.com. United has 23 aging Boeing 747-400s that will be eventually replaced with newer Airbus A350-1000s and Boeing 787-10 Dreamliners. Boeing 747-422 N199UA (msn 29717) arrives in Frankfurt.

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Air France moves up the last Boeing 747-400 revenue flight

Air France (Paris) is moving up the planned Boeing 747-400 retirement date (subject to further changes). The last planned Boeing 747-400 revenue flight has been moved from March 26, 2016 to January 10, 2016 according to Airline Route. The last flight is currently flight AF439 departing from Mexico City on January 10, 2016 and arriving at Paris (CDG) the following day at 2:25 pm (1425).


Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747-428 F-GITE (msn 25601) arrives at Miami International Airport.

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