Key Points:

  • THAI Airways offers six of its Airbus A380 aircraft for bidding in an "as-is, where-is" condition.

  • The sale process comes under the oversight of the Bankruptcy Court and THAI's Plan Administrator.

  • Four of the aircraft are stored at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport, while two are at Rayong-Pattaya U-Tapao Airport.

THAI Airways Rethinks Fleet, Decides Against Reviving Airbus A380s.

BANGKOK — Amidst restructuring efforts, THAI Airways, recognized in trade circles as THAI, has kickstarted the sale of six of its Airbus A380s Aerotime reports. Interested parties were formally invited on August 23, 2023, to bid on these aircraft registered as HS-TUA, HS-TUB, HS-TUC, HS-TUD, HS-TUE, and HS-TUF. It's notable that these planes were grounded during the pandemic’s onset between March and April 2020 and have since remained idle by THAI Airways.

Bidders keen on adding any of these Airbus A380s to their fleet should submit their offers, accompanied by a $50,000 deposit for each plane, before the deadline at 11:59 pm Bangkok time (UTC +7) on September 12, 2023.

According to the official invitation extended by the airline, the sale process is supervised by the Bankruptcy Court's directives. The finalization of this aircraft sale, as detailed in the General Terms and Conditions (GTC), requires the green light from THAI’s Plan Administrator. Only post this clearance will the sale be stamped as conclusive.

As a cautionary move, THAI has explicitly stated its prerogative to dismiss bids from potential buyers deemed unsuitable. This includes entities facing sanctions from the United States or the Thai government. Should the purchase culminate, the acquiring party would have to either transport their newly acquired aircraft out of Thailand or opt for onsite dismantling.

However, a notable disclosure by THAI is the absence of any Airworthiness Directives (AD) or Service Bulletins (SB) executed on these planes. Storage locations for these aircraft have been identified as Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Airport (BKK) for four of them (HS-TUA, HS-TUB, HS-TUC, and HS-TUD) and Rayong-Pattaya U-Tapao International Airport (UTP) for the remaining two (HS-TUE and HS-TUF). Additionally, it was revealed that none underwent their latest C-checks, with two having missed their C3 checks in 2019.

Each aircraft boasts a three-tiered seating layout: 12 seats in the Royal First Class (by Safran's Venus), 60 in the Royal Executive Class (by Stelia's Solstys), and 435 in the Economy Class (by Recaro's CL3510).

While a surge in travel demand in 2022 and 2023 sparked discussions about reintroducing these Airbus A380s, THAI Airways' CEO, Chai Eamsiri, eventually affirmed the company's intent to offload them, aligning with their new wide-body aircraft procurement strategy.