Qantas Cancels Order for Airbus A380. What’s Next?

Photo: Emirates

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Qantas, the flag carrier of Australia, has announced cancelling the order for 8 Airbus A380, double-deck, widebody, four-engine airliners. The long-suffering superjumbo got another blow.

Therefore, the airline which has 12 A80s in its fleet said it “remains committed to a major upgrade of its existing A380s, which begins in mid-calendar 2019”.

Airbus in Talks with Emirates

On 31 January, 2019, Airbus released a statement confirming that the aircraft manufacturer is in talks with Emirates regarding the Airbus A380 contract. However, the details of the negotiations were not disclosed.

Therefore, it is believed that Emirates could cancel the order for 36 A380s and switch it to smaller A350s.

Total orders for A380s from Emirates comprise nearly half of the total list, thus, Airbus heavy dependency on Emirates is obvious.

Airbus A380: Orders & Deliveries

The double-deck A380 is the largest commercial aircraft flying today, with capacity to carry 544 passengers. The aircraft performed its maiden flight 13 years ago, on 27 April, 2005, and entered commercial service almost three years later, on 25 October, 2007, with a launch airline – Singapore Airlines.

Airbus had very high expectations for this program, however, not all the expectations were satisfied. Due to the fact that A380 struggled to win the forecast number of orders, it lead to decrease of production rates.

In total, from its launch until 31 December, 2018, Airbus has won 321 orders for its superjumbo and delivered 234. In 2018, Airbus delivered 12 A380s in total to Emirates (8), Singapore Airlines (3), Qatar (1). In terms of orders, the planemaker won the order for 20 A380 from its biggest customer, Emirates. However, now the deal seems to be surround with a great uncertainty.

According to, currently there are 13 airlines operating A380 aircraft. The largest fleet of this type belongs to Emirates (108 planes). Among the operators also are Air France, British Airways, Lufthansa, Qatar, Qantas, Singapore Airlines, Asiana Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Etihad, Korean Air, Malaysia Airlines, Thai Airways and Hi Fly.