Icelandair To Convert 3 Boeing 767s Into Cargo Planes

Icelandair Group, the legal parent company to Icelandair, will reconfigure three Boeing 767s to transport cargo. FlightGlobal reports…

Icelandair To Convert 3 Boeing 767s Into Cargo Planes

Icelandair Group, the legal parent company to Icelandair, will reconfigure three Boeing 767s to transport cargo. FlightGlobal reports that the decision comes after the company made an agreement to operate freight flights between China and Germany.

Icelandair has four 767s in its fleet. Photo: Valentin Hintikka via Flickr

Partnering with a German firm

Icelandair Group has entered into an agreement with the German firm DB Schenker, a division of rail operator Deutsche Bahn. This agreement covers at least 45 cargo flights from Shanghai to Munich. However, as previously reported, services will also be conducted from Shanghai via Rekjavik to Chicago.

FlightGlobal adds that Icelandair Group subsidiaries Icelandair Cargo and Loftleidir Icelandic will carry out the preparation and operation of these freight flights.

Icelandair 767
Icelandair is taking its Boeing 767 to Shanghai. Photo: Getty Images

The airline group will remove the passenger seating on its 767s in order to allow for greater volume and greater ease of loading/unloading the cargo. Cargo mainly consists of medical equipment for healthcare providers.

“The parties have already agreed to continue with additional flights to China as long as needed,” -Icelandair Group

Icelandair’s 767s

Icelandair has just four Boeing 767-300ERs in its fleet. Two of which were previously noted as parked. The aircraft would normally be capable of carrying a full load of 259 passengers – 25 in its Saga business class and the remaining 234 in economy.

All four aircraft originally went from the Boeing factory to Air New Zealand. However, these jets have also flown for airlines like Kenya Airways, Air India, and failed Russian airline Transaero.

The 767s were introduced in 2016 to compliment the airline’s 757 fleet of aircraft. Icelandair currently has 25 of these narrowbody jets.

Icelandair 757
Icelandair’s 757s are normally the workhorse of the Icelandair fleet. These have been slated to be replaced by the Boeing 737 MAX. Photo: Getty Images

A rise in cargo demand

Icelandair is responding to the steady rise in demand for cargo flights. The reason for this rise is two-fold. Firstly, urgent medical supplies are needed around the world – much of this is manufactured in China. Secondly, as global passenger flights have decreased, so has the capacity for cargo transport that these aircraft would normally provide.

“One of the key strengths of Icelandair Group is the flexibility to be able to respond quickly to opportunities and execute them in a short period of time,” -Bogi Nils Bogason, Chief executive

The rise in global demand is so great that even once suspended airlines are coming back. We are seeing this with CargoLogicAir as it has recently reactivated its Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) and Operator’s Licence (OL). The UK-based airline will now employ its two 747-400 freighters to deliver vital medical supplies for the United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS).

Icelandair joins other airlines in converting their passenger aircraft into freighters through the removal of passenger seating. Air Canada has converted some of its Boeing 777-300ER fleet for cargo by removing seats. Lufthansa is doing the same for some of its Airbus A330s.

What do you think of Icelandair’s pivot to cargo operations? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

Source : Simple Flying More   

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LATAM Brazil Wants To Stop Flying But Can’t

LATAM Brazil’s CEO, Jerome Cadier, said that the skeleton network of flights implemented by the Brazilian government since the…

LATAM Brazil Wants To Stop Flying But Can’t

LATAM Brazil’s CEO, Jerome Cadier, said that  since the beginning of April isn’t working. At least not for the airline, because it is currently burning cash. He added that the ideal thing would be to stop flying, but can’t. Let’s investigate further. 

LATAM Brazil is operating domestic flights but losing money. Photo: Getty Images

The ideal scenario would be to stop flying

In an interview with local newspaper , Cadier said that LATAM should stop flying altogether. He added that right now, the airline is burning fuel while not getting any positive results. 

In April, LATAM Brazil, GOL, and Azul are operating a skeleton network to keep the country connected. They operate 1,241 flights every week to 46 destinations across Brazil, a 91.61% reduction of the normal number of weekly domestic flights in the country.

Currently, LATAM Brazil is operating 25 daily flights from its central hub, Congonhas International Airport, in Sao Paulo. This number of operations represent 3% of what it flew before the coronavirus pandemic arrived in Brazil. 

Cadier said, 

“We are burning fuel. Our route map today doesn’t pay the variable costs. The only two countries we are currently flying in are Chile and Brazil because the governments asked us to do so. The smart thing to do right now would be to stop flying.”

Every other country in South America, except Mexico, is currently closed. Some airlines like Avianca have said that this is the worst crisis in history, and . But still, the worst is yet to come, said Cadier. 

LATAM Brazil
Many airlines will disappear between 2021 and 2022. Photo: Rafael Luiz Canossa via Flickr.

If you don’t have your costs down, you’ll not survive

Jerome Cadier expects that after the pandemic disappears, the demand will not be high. He aims the demand to be between 30% and 40% until 2021. He had previously added that 

The combination of low load factors and the excess of airplanes in the market will put pressure on the airlines, Cadier said. Consequently, the market will pressure the price tickets, which will make it harder for airlines to recover its low-profit margins.

“It is going to be a very tough scenario. Whoever doesn’t have its costs down, it will not survive,” Cadier said. 

And let’s remember that before the pandemic, Latin America was a tough place for business. The airlines in the region lost US$0.50 per passenger last year and were expecting to have minimal profit margins in 2020. 

TAM
Latin America is a tough place for airlines. Photo: Rafael Luiz Canossa via Flickr.

More airlines will disappear between 2021 and 2022

Finally, Jerome Cadier said that there are going to be two waves in this crisis. We’re currently in the first wave, and the main objective is to keep costs down and save as much as possible.

To do it, LATAM Brazil will try to operate with a 25% less cost per flight hour. How? By changing the crews’ wages and renegotiating the leasing and supplier contracts. Cadier asked for more flexibility from everyone. 

This flexibility includes the same airline. The new passengers will be anxious about the hygiene measures on board. So maybe the airline will have to reduce its capacity from 180 to 120 seats by 

Airlines will also have to be flexible with their plane tickets. No one is going to fly if they have no certainty that they will be able to change their flying date. 

After that, he said that this is not an easy task. “Maybe some airlines will survive this first wave. But I expect that many will disappear between 2021 and 2022,” he said. 

Do you think many airlines will disappear between 2021 and 2022? Let us know in the comments. 

Source : Simple Flying More   

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