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Sydney, Australia - Qantas is continuing to refurbish its Airbus A380 fleet and retire the remaining Boeing 747s in the fleet, despite the ongoing global crisis.

Three Qantas Airbus A380 had their new cabins already installed before the airline suspended all its international flights. The Australian flag carrier now sent three more superjumbos to the sites in Dresden and Abu Dhabi for maintenance and refurbishement work.

The Australian flag carrier has 12 Airbus A380 in its fleet. The remaining six superjumbos have been stored in Sydney, Melbourne, and Los Angeles.

 "Nobody knows when this is going to end, with the airline having its own hibernation-mode plans for three months, six months, nine months, a year,"

said Qantas Group CEO, Alan Joyce.

When the spread of the coronavirus stops in the country, domestic flights are expected to start before the international flights.

Despite the current slowdown, Qantas sticks to its initial plan to complete the refurbishment of its six classic superjumbos by the end of this year. The planes will be outfitted with new first-class suites, new business class and premium economy seats, plus two new onboard lounges.

On the other hand, the existing crisis makes it less likely that Qantas' 747-400s will return to the service when the dust settles. The longer the international flights are suspended, and the harder the post-pandemic air travel recovery, it is less likely the iconic jumbo jet is back to the skies. The aircraft made its last scheduled flight before the travel restrictions.

Qantas had already announced that it would retire its five remaining Boeing 747-400 jets by the end of 2020. The Australian flag carrier hasn't yet officially retired any of them.

Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, United Airlines, and KLM are the airlines that recently ceased operations with 747s.


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