Global Airlines Operates First Airbus A380 Flight, Sort Of

Daniel Fowkes
16 Feb 2024
· Aircraft 
· Airlines 
Global Airlines has operated its first flight with the Airbus A380, sort of, with a 20-minute circuit around the Mojave desert.

Global Airlines has completed its first flight, with its first Airbus A380 acquired over the Mojave desert in California, sort of.

Registered as 9H-GLOBL, the aircraft departed Mojave at 0857 local time before touching back down at 0917, thus a 20-minute flight of the ex-China Southern Airlines A380.

Flight data provided by Flightradar24 indicates the aircraft completed a circuit around Mojave and came following the aircraft being taxiied to the runway the other day.

Additionally, a source close to the airfield and airline had said several days ago that engine tests were occurring and that a first flight was seemingly imminent, this being the confirmation necessary for that.

While a 20-minute flight test occurs in Mojave, if Global wants this aircraft to head back to the United Kingdom, they’ll need the plane in the air far longer than just 20 minutes with a lengthy Transatlantic flight ahead of it.

The flight, however, isn’t a revenue one and is also not technically Global Airlines operating the service. That is what the company hopes will come later, but with still no AOC and already pushback in the launch timeframe, there are visible concerns.

Global Airlines had previously said it fitted 22 new tyres to the aircraft, each weighing 120kgs. This move was essential to ensure smooth travel and keep the aircraft in best condition for its eventual operation and flight.

Additionally, the airline said it had taken full 100% ownership of MSN120 at the beginning of February and registered the aircraft. This meant the start-up bought an Airbus A380 without any lease or financing.

However, the start-up’s purchase of this aircraft has led to much confusion, considering the company said it had already acquired a handful of Airbus A380s last year. Analysts still argue that buying, while an achievement, is one thing. Actually, running a profitable business is another, and until then, this is a fantasy airline.

Ambitious Plans

Global Airlines wants to become an industry leader and give long-established legacy airlines a run for their money. Using an all-Airbus A380 fleet, it’ll call London Gatwick home and offer services globally.

Analysts and onlookers have severally doubted the plans outlined by the prospective airline, doubting its business model, finances, and plan, among many more. However, getting this ex-China Southern Airlines A380 in the sky is a step many believed wouldn’t happen.

Inside the cabin, Global wants the experience to be unlike any other and will pioneer itself in offering top-class service, utilising interior space to its advantage.

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