During the coronavirus outbreak, many airlines opted to retire their Boeing 747s. In a recent statement by Minister of State for Civil Aviation, VK Singh, Air India will retain four of its 747s for the time being.
While most airlines are retiring their 747s and opting for modernisation, Air India reports that the jumbo still has a place in its fleet. VK Singh was quoted as saying, “there are four 747-400 aircraft in Air India’s fleet, and their average age is about 26 years. Currently, three of the four 747s are under maintenance checks. At present, Air India has no plans to phase out the operation of the Boeing 747 from its fleet.”
The 747s operations have been largely replaced by more efficient aircrafts like the Boeing 777 and 787s. But the aircraft has a life of about 26 years. India’s aircrafts, which rose to popularity and came to be known as the “Maharaja” has a place in history. Also the aircraft will be sent to the scrapyard once it outlives its years.
Air India has nine 747s. The four remaining aircrafts was received between 1993 and 1996. Hence, the aircraft has a few more years, keeping it away from the scrapyard.