British Airways will retire its first Boeing 747 this week after confirming last month the majority of its 31 jumbos had flown their last commercial flights.
The 747-400, registration G-CIVD, will take off one last time from Heathrow at 9am on Tuesday (18 August) under flight number BA9170E after more than 25 years’ service, bound for Spain.
Its final BA flight was on 18 April as part of efforts to repatriate people from Lagos in Nigeria.
BA has brought forward retirement of its historic 747 fleet owing to the effects of the coronavirus crisis.
Al Bridger, BA director of flight operations, said: “All of us at British Airways and so many of our customers will have fond memories and special moments from our travels on the iconic jumbo jet.
“As a pilot who was lucky enough to fly the aircraft, the sheer scale of it was unforgettable, you literally looked down on other aircraft.
"It changed aviation forever when it arrived in the skies and I know I speak for our customers and the global aviation community when I say, despite rightly moving to more sustainable ways of flying, we will still miss the 747 dearly.”
Jumbos have been an iconic part of BA’s fleet for nearly 50 years; the aircraft completed its first BA flight to New York in 1971, and at one stage, BA was operating 57 jumbos.
However, the thirsty jumbo is being phased out as part of BA’s commitment to reducing emissions and achieving net zero carbon status by 2050, with newer Airbus A350s and Boeing 787s taking over from the jumbo.