Abu Dhabi’s Etihad yet to decide on resumption of its A380 flights, says CEO

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Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways is yet to make a decision on whether it ever resumes Airbus A380 flights, its chief executive said.

Sources told Reuters in May that Etihad was considering retiring its 10 A380s, grounded in March when the coronavirus crisis forced passenger flights to be suspended.

Passenger services have since resumed though the A380s remain grounded with the airline favoring smaller aircraft as the pandemic continues to hit travel demand.

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“The jury is out” on whether Etihad would ever operate the four-engine jet again, CEO Tony Douglas told the state-owned carrier’s podcast, published this week.

“I think it is heavily handicapped by two engines too many and other aircraft that can do the job far more efficiently, far more sustainably,” he said.

Douglas said he was not trying to rule out Etihad’s A380s returning to service but that he believed there would be an acceleration in the retirement of A380s globally.

He did not say when Etihad would make a decision.

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