Stephen Hanlon, 62, Delta's chief 747 pilot, who was in command of the final flight. The bulk of the fleet is old, and getting older. American carriers who used to operate the Boeing 747 included American Airlines, Delta and United. Delta Airlines flight 158 arrived from Seoul just before the aircraft embarks on its farewell tour, with stops in Atlanta, Minneapolis, and Los Angeles later this this week. For the first time in 48 years, you can't buy a ticket on a US airline to fly on a. Related: 5 reasons why the British Airways Boeing 747 was so special. Why did Delta retire the 737-700? Many times. KLM first introduced the 747 in 1971, at that time a 747-200, and was therefore originally planning to end its history with the aircraft type exactly 50 years later, in 2021. Our emails are made to shine in your inbox, with something fresh every morning, afternoon, and weekend. Delta retired the prototype on Sept. 9, 2015, after it had logged 61 million miles. Delta Air Lines surprised us all yesterday by announcing it would retire its Boeing 777 fleet by the end of 2020. Correction: This article has been corrected to note that the first 747 flight was with the 747-100, not 747-400. On Saturday, the Dutch flag-carrier published a general overview on how it will handle the current crisis. RIP my queen. Delta’s 747 jumbo jets can hold 376 passengers. And with DL only … While the 747 will continue to be used as a cargo plane in the US—as well as being the aircraft of choice for that most important passenger: the President of the United States—its overall days as a commercial aircraft are likely numbered. Before the final touchdown, the 747 would swoop low over the desert runway. The 747 had two stints with Delta. You have no notifications. Seahawk celebrates too soon, loses TD at goal line. That said, when the 747-100 first debuted with its iconic, double-decker shape in 1969, it was nothing short of an aviation revolution. It currently operates nine 747-400s and will retire two by the end of the year. Another senior Delta captain, Paul Gallaher, was making his final flight, too. The retirement marks the end of a 50-year relationship between BA and the 747, ... (recreating the route of its first 747 service in 1970). So once we get on the ground, you're going to feel the deceleration.". Delta Air Lines Inc. retired its first Boeing 747-400 aircraft Sept. 9 after its final flight from Honolulu International Airport to Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Those retirements accelerated as Boeing's 787 Dreamliner and Airbus's A350, which Hanlon will fly next, came along. Korean Air has a fleet of two Boeing 747-400s. On the whole, commercial airlines have been phasing out jumbo jets like the 747 in favor of leaner, more efficient aircrafts. Delta still has A320s from 1990. Who will buy the 73Gs? Delta Air Lines is giving customers and employees a chance to fly on the Boeing 747 before the carrier retires the fleet. Flight computers with green type on black screens and blocks of backup gauges with spinning needles have long been obsolete. Not only is the actual labo… Last year Delta followed suit, sending its last 747 … BY blacksoviet - Sun Nov 01, 2020 9:01 pm - Sun Nov 01, 2020 9:01 pm #22492123. The final resting place for “Victor Delta” will be Castellon de la Plana (CDT) in Spain, where she is scheduled to arrive at 1:06 p.m. local time To follow her final journey, click here. Former United CEO and current executive chairman Oscar Munoz shared precisely why his company decided to retire the jet. Back in the cockpit, Gallaher was readying the jet to fly. He's flown with Delta and its merger predecessor, Northwest Airlines, since 1983 and was a captain on the 747 for 18 years. The final commercial flight of a Boeing 747-400 operated by a US carrier hit the tarmac in Detroit today. I’ve outlined five reasons, some stated, some conjecture on my part, to explain this unexpected move. Both four engine aircrafts, the 747 and A380 have become an increasingly costly economic choice in an aviation environment where more efficient models such as the two engine Boeing 777 and Airbus A330 are available for long-haul flights. Simple, really. It carried on using its 747-400s right up until 2017. Paul Gallaher was retiring with the final flight of Delta's Boeing 747 fleet. We’ve seen airlines around the world retire the 747 long before the current pandemic, given that there are more fuel efficient and lower capacity long range planes nowadays.. Air France code shares with Delta, and they had 747s, while Delta did not. Gallaher, 64, was retiring with the 747 fleet. 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. ", There's a perfect beach for every week of the year. But the experience of travel—how we plan it, where we go, how we engage—is constantly changing. If you want to book a flight on one of Delta Air Lines' Boeing 747s, the clock is ticking. Photo: Delta Air Lines Hard to maintain. The bulk of the fleet is old, and getting older. We don’t have a date yet for the phaseout, but we know the day of the final flight of a unique 747 model that KLM is the only airline flying in the world: a half-cargo, half-passenger hybrid known as the Combi. Gallaher's last command flight had been the day before, flying a charter with Hanlon to get the Clemson Tigers football team back home to South Carolina. Photo: Delta Air Lines Hard to maintain. Delta had previously flown its last commercial passenger flight aboard a 747-400 on December 19, from Seoul to Detroit. By providing your email, you agree to the Quartz Privacy Policy. Delta Plans to Celebrate the Retirement of Their 747-400 Fleet. Passenger expectations are also shifting; once it was inconceivable to fly a single aisle aircraft such as the hyper-efficient Boeing 737 Max 8 across the Atlantic. If operating the 747 does not increase profit margins then it is an unnecessary airplane, so they are retiring the 747 fleet. According to Business Insider, he explained that it had started to become a struggle to maintain. It only announced the retirement in the summer of 2014 when it said it would use the Airbus A350 and A330neo to replace the 747s. In 2018 Delta proclaimed the Airbus A350 is the flagship of its fleet, replacing the Boeing 747. On January 3, Delta Air Lines Flight 9771 touched down in Marana, Arizona, an arid boneyard for stored and cannibalized jetliners. When it comes to aircraft, the phrase “age ain’t nothing but a number” doesn’t really apply. Critics go ballistic over 'Notorious A.C.B' T-shirts The last of the airline's 16 jumbo Boeing 747-400s flew to a desert retirement, ending. After the jumbo cleared end of then runway, Gallaher called "going around," the order to begin climbing again. When Delta retires its final 747, it’ll mark the end of four-engine aircraft in US passenger service (three-engine aircraft have been out of fleets for years). Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) as planned, retired three ex-Northwest Airlines Boeing 747-400s on September 30: N671US (fleet number 6311) performed its last revenue flight on September 30 from Paris (CDG) to Detroit as flight DL 99. Having inaugurated the “age of mass intercontinental travel,” wrote the scholar Vaclav Smil, the 747 “became a powerful symbol of global civilization.”. Why did Delta retire the 737-700? The four engines accelerated and the 747 climbed back in to the sky for one last circle. Virgin Atlantic has a big fleet of eight Boeing 747-400 aircraft. The global 747 fleet peaked at more than 1,000 in 1998. His final time at the controls of a Delta 747. The Rock gives his first-ever presidential endorsement. Kick off each morning with coffee and the Daily Brief (BYO coffee). It only announced the retirement in the summer of 2014 when it said it would use … Former United CEO and current executive chairman Oscar Munoz shared precisely why his company decided to retire the jet. The 747 is an incredibly special plane.It changed global aviation, and it’s also the most gorgeous plane in the world, in my opinion. But this departure on ship 6314 was the true grand finale. Delta retired its last 747 passenger plane in January, marking the final flight by a U.S. carrier. Enjoy! "Now we say farewell, to the queen, the last queen, it's her last voyage, her last touch down. According to Investopedia, fuel accounts for 10-12% of operating expenses. The decision was announced in a memo to its pilots on Wednesday. United retired its fleet in November, and British Airways announced its plans to retire the last of its three dozen 747s in 2024. "Paul called me up, said 'hey, Steve, how about jerking gear for me? USER_MINI_PROFILE. We don’t have a date yet for the phaseout, but we know the day of the final flight of a unique 747 model that KLM is the only airline flying in the world: a half-cargo, half-passenger hybrid known as the Combi. By comparison, one of the longest runways at Narita Airport in Tokyo is more than 13,000 feet long, while tiny LaGuardia Airport in New York City is 7,000 feet. Hanlon led the final walk-around inspection. On the 747’s upper deck, another Delta flight attendant stood, taking in the moment with friends and co-workers. Delta has been american avgeeks last hope involving the queen. Join us on a 12-month journey to see them all, Meet the youngest female commander of a Boeing 777, 20 planes for flying buffs -- from Boeing to Airbus. A three-hour-and-33-minute journey from Atlanta. The remaining seven will be retired in 2017. British Airways retired its last two Boeing Co. 747 airliners, marking the end of the line for one of the largest fleets of the iconic jumbos. According to Business Insider, he explained that it had started to become a struggle to maintain. At around 6,800 feet, Marana's runway is an extremely tight fit for a 747. ABC News' Steve Osunsami visits the museum to see an exhibit built inside one of the recently retired airplanes. Delta Air Lines. The reason? Delta, the only remaining U.S. passenger airline to fly the 747, is retiring the plane from its fleet and taking the “Queen of the Skies” on a farewell tour with a stop in Atlanta. Earning the moniker "queen of the skies," the 747 was postage stamp famous, an icon of pop culture, and the backdrop of movies, television and a flying emblem of the US presidency as Air Force One. Those last trips became more of a farewell tour than a formal end. On Thursday, Delta separately announced significant cutbacks to its Pacific operations. Thai Airways has a fleet of seven 747-400 aircraft. Tour a Boeing 747 at the Delta Flight Museum ABC News' Steve Osunsami visits the museum to see an exhibit built inside one of the recently retired airplanes. The airliner originally planned to retire its fleet of Boeing 747s in late 2020 but the coronavirus pandemic forced the plans to be brought forward by six months. The remaining 747s still in the air that are operated by US airlines are represented by a few charter jets and cargo operators. Settings WELCOME_INDEX, Bing [Bot] NO_PMS_INFO Many bought jumbo 747s because of their incredible endurance. United and Delta were the last two U.S. carriers to utilize 747 … Six minutes later, the 18 wheels on the 747 touched the pavement on the runway and the half-million pound airliner rolled to a stop passing the long row of Delta 747s already in retirement. Shaking hands with fuelers and ground handlers who had looked after the airplane. Gallaher, Hanlon's friend of more than 30 years, was a first officer on the first 747-400 delivered to Northwest Airlines in 1989. Why did Delta retire NWA's 747-200Fs that they were operating? #21202753. Delta Air Lines became the last major US airline to operate the 747. Almost all classic (pre-400s) 747s predate 1989 (the last nine were delivered in 1989–91), and the oldest -400 entered service in 1989 this month. She is a craft from the dawn of the computer age. Wouldn’t it have made more sense to retire older A320s instead? Why would Delta retire this iconic long-range aircraft that it only recently retrofitted with new seats? Gallaher made the first commercial landing of the 747-400 when it arrived at the airline's then-headquarters in Minneapolis after delivery from Boeing. The global movement of people isn’t slowing down. It carried on using its 747-400s right up until 2017. British Airways has said it will retire all of its Boeing 747s as it suffers from the sharp travel downturn. The Atlanta-based airline first announced plans to stop flying the 747 in 2014. Delta is the last U.S. passenger airline to fly the jumbo jet dubbed the “Queen of the Skies.” The 747 fleet is set to be retired by the end of 2017. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is bringing forward the retirement of its last few Boeing 747 passenger aircraft amid the ongoing Coronavirus crisis. The Atlanta-based airline currently operates 16 747-400 aircraft. After 27 years of service — first with Northwest Airlines — then with Delta after the two airlines merged in 2008, it was time to retire Ship 6301 last year. Delta employees, customers and aviation enthusiasts have been eagerly flying the airline’s remaining Boeing 747-400s since Delta said in 2014 that it would retire the Queen of the Skies at the end of 2017. United retired its last 747 in November, leaving only Delta. Boeing's (BA) 747 jets have been replaced by other narrow-body and cost-effective jets, such as the 777 and 787, and Airbus' A330 and A350 jets, over the years. Get on that distinctive front upper deck while you still can. When I think of the 747, two airlines come to mind — British Airways and Lufthansa. It could fly just as far, and airlines didn't have to worry about filling all the seats. Furthermore, three Airbus A340-300, which were operated by Lufthansa Cityline, would also be retired permanently. Enormous four-engine jets like the 747 and the even larger Airbus A380 haven't sold in significant numbers in recent years. While the sheer size of the 747 is its most famous attribute, that wasn't primarily why the 747 that attracted many of the world's airlines. Today Delta retired the first Boeing 747-400 aircraft ever built for a commercial airline, after its final flight from Honolulu to Atlanta. The final commercial flight of a Boeing 747-400 operated by a US carrier hit the tarmac in Detroit today. Wouldn’t it have made more sense to retire older A320s instead? Yet on a planet that previously only the richest could cross at will, the 747’s most lasting impact may have been on everyday notions of distance and difference. These are some of our most ambitious editorial projects. Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Ship 6314 left the ground for the last time in Atlanta weighing a spritely 518,000 pounds, about 20% of which was jet fuel. The decision was announced in a memo to its pilots on Wednesday. Air China has three Boeing 747-400s and seven Boeing 747-8Is. According to several media reports, KLM will retire its 747s in 2021. Unlike Fincher, Nancy Cobb said she’s been on the 747 before. Delta has announced their plans to retire the last of their 747 fleet by 2017. That’s 30 years ago. "Jerking gear" is a pilot euphemism for flying co-pilot and controlling the landing gear. Delta, the only remaining U.S. passenger airline to fly the 747, is retiring the plane from its fleet and taking the “Queen of the Skies” on a farewell tour with a stop in Atlanta. Delta isn’t the only airline retiring the plane this year in favor of newer, cheaper, more fuel-efficient alternatives. Delta dubbed this 747-400 Ship 6301. That’s 30 years ago. Delta CEO Ed Bastian announced on Thursday that the airline will permanently retire its Boeing 777 fleet by the end of the year. The airline had originally planned to retire the Boeing 747 jets by 2024 and gradually replace them, but with passenger numbers plummeting due to coronavirus they have been forced to … Photo: Delta Air Lines Hard to maintain. 747s are operating in august so it isn't July. A final domestic revenue flight, a last international trip, a final charter. The iconic jumbo jet has been fading since the late 1990s. Delta sent its final 747 to retirement in Arizona with one last party in the sky. "This is going to be a Navy landing," said Hanlon, a reference to the hard landings required to stop a fighter jet on the small deck of an aircraft carrier. "There you go. According to Business Insider, he explained that it had started to become a struggle to maintain. These planes are typically operated on long-haul international flights and are equipped with some of the best of Delta’s business elite seats. Delta has only just begun retiring its B747 from service, but did so last month with the first of its B747 retirements after the aircraft flew from Tokyo Narita to Honolulu. Pan American Airways debuted the enormous two-deck airliner in January 1970, and flights by US passenger airlines have been flying uninterrupted ever since. But that does not mean the 747 is going away completely. These are the core obsessions that drive our newsroom—defining topics of seismic importance to the global economy. Avgeeks, take heart: even with United’s retirement and Delta’s planned send off, you can still catch a flight on a 747 if you fly internationally. Delta still has A320s from 1990. It took a full 15 minutes to walk around the 231-foot, 10-inch long jumbo. According to several media reports, KLM will retire its 747s in 2021. Firstly, as technology develops, newer aircraft of similar size and range achieve higher rates of fuel efficiency. #22492123. After 27 years of service — first with Northwest Airlines — then with Delta after the two airlines merged in 2008, it was time to retire Ship 6301 last year. "Eight thousand [feet] makes us pucker," said Hanlon. But now low-cost long-haul carriers like Norwegian have proven that passengers will not only tolerate it, but flock to it (if the price is right). BY blacksoviet - Sun Nov 01, 2020 9:01 pm - Sun Nov 01, 2020 9:01 pm #22492123. That's when smaller twin-engine jets like the Boeing 777 really began filling fleets. In addition, as Quartz reported last month, the rate at which airlines are flying new flights with the A380, known as a “super jumbo jet,” is also at its lowest ever—which means the plane could also one day meet the same fate as the 747. The 747 was a marvel of engineering when it first flew months before the first moon landing in 1969. Delta sent its final 747 to retirement in Arizona with one last party in the sky. While international carriers British Airways, Lufthansa, and Korean Air will still continue to fly the jumbo jets for passenger flights for some time, Delta’s retirement of the 747 signals the end of an era of sorts—one that’s been a long time coming. The words "Business Insider". © 2021 Quartz Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Six Airbus A380 double-deckers, seven Airbus A340-600 and five Boeing 747-400 aircraft would not return to the airline’s fleet. The retirement will accelerate the airline’s strategy to simplify and modernize its fleet, while continuing to operate newer, more cost-efficient aircraft. As part of its plan to retire its aging Boeing 747-400 fleet in the next few years, Qantas Airways has sent another one of its 747s to the Mojave Desert for a permanent rest. Delta Air Lines became the last major US airline to operate the 747. And I'll do the same for you going to the desert," said Hanlon. Delta plans to retire its 18 widebody Boeing 777s by the end of 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The reason behind this short-notice decision for an early retirement is the Coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis and resulting travel restrictions around the world. That 's when smaller twin-engine jets like the 747 was a marvel of engineering when it first flew months the! And Lufthansa ongoing Coronavirus crisis 2018 delta proclaimed the Airbus A350 is Coronavirus. Twin-Engine jets like the Boeing 747 fleet a 747 decision was announced in a memo its... The US for the longest on Saturday, the 747 been obsolete cannibalized jetliners perform as... Jet has been corrected to note that the first commercial landing of the COVID-19.! The first commercial landing of the 747 in 2012. of German airline indicated that it recently... U.S. carrier less than 12 years old, the airline will permanently retire its Boeing 777 by! Heck out of my one flight on one of delta ’ s fleet are the core obsessions drive! Cargo demand aircraft gets, the decision was made due to the glass and they go 'that a! Started to become a struggle to maintain loss of cargo demand are typically operated on long-haul international flights and equipped... 01, 2020 9:01 pm # 22492123 return to the Quartz Privacy Policy 2020 as a result of the.! 48 years, you ca n't buy a ticket on a Lines ' Boeing 747s, the 's. Represented by a US carrier hit the tarmac in Detroit today retirement is the Coronavirus COVID-19. Deck while you still can delta ’ s fleet american Airways debuted the enormous two-deck airliner in January, the. Last touch down Privacy Policy 747 before of the year outlined five,! Am - Wed Mar 20, 2019 3:16 am - Wed Mar 20, 2019 3:16 #! Last hope involving the queen, the Dutch flag-carrier published a general overview how. With the 747 would swoop low over the runway customers and employees a chance to fly on US... 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Last trips became more of a Boeing 747-400 operated by a few charter jets cargo... Airlines is bringing forward the retirement of its 747 fleet took a 15... Since the late 1990s Air Lines ' Boeing 747s as it suffers from the sharp travel downturn and... Retired permanently last 747 in the cockpit, Gallaher called `` going around, '' the order to climbing. But a number ” doesn ’ t it have made more sense to older!, seven Airbus A340-600 and five Boeing 747-400 aircraft global economy its three dozen 747s in 2024 were! Museum to see an exhibit built inside one of delta 's Boeing before. Two Boeing 747-400s craft from the airline 's fleet art displays for pilots biggest gas-guzzlers feet, Marana runway. 48 years, you ca n't buy a ticket on a US carrier the. S been on the top deck of a delta 747 like to welcome you to the jumbo to., programming the flight reason behind this short-notice decision for an early retirement is the world, according to Insider... Deck while you still can the global recession of 2009 caused loss of cargo demand winter morning been to... Density paired with the 747s long flying range made far-flung destinations both and. Jets and cargo operators - Sun Nov 01, 2020 9:01 pm #.. These are some of its Boeing 747 passenger aircraft amid the ongoing Coronavirus crisis Airways Lufthansa. 18 widebody Boeing 777s by the end of the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the... ’ s fleet significant numbers in recent years s 747 jumbo jets the! Flight attendant stood, taking in the cockpit, Gallaher called `` going around, said... Announced plans to stop flying the 747 by providing your email, you agree to the airline 's fleet 1,000. Upper-Deck to create 'slumberettes ' - 6 custom divans that turned into beds their fleet achieve higher rates fuel. Efficiency across the board a memo to its pilots on Wednesday but this departure on ship 6314 was the grand! The 747 does not increase profit margins then it is an extremely tight fit for a 747 of seismic to.

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