Russia: AirBridge orders 747-8s

AirBridge Cargo has announced anorder for five 747-8 freighters with fiveoptions, for delivery between 2010 and2013. The order was in fact confirmedin November, but had been kept underwraps for political reasons, due to adispute between the Russian governmentand Aeroflot over whether toorder Boeing or Airbus aircraft for itspassenger fleet. AirBridge is also due to get […]


AirBridge Cargo has announced anorder for five 747-8 freighters with fiveoptions, for delivery between 2010 and2013. The order was in fact confirmedin November, but had been kept underwraps for political reasons, due to adispute between the Russian governmentand Aeroflot over whether toorder Boeing or Airbus aircraft for itspassenger fleet.

AirBridge is also due to get the firstof three B747-400ERFs in November,with the others coming in Februaryand April 2008. These will be usedto launch the carrier¡¯s long-promisedservices from China to North Americavia Krasnoyarsk in Siberia. The initialroute will be from Shanghai to Krasnoyarskand Toronto, returning viaHouston, Amsterdam and Krasnoyarskto Shanghai.

The use of the second and thirdERFs has not yet finally been decided,according to Stan Wraight, presidentand CEO of AirBridge Cargo, but couldbe used to add a second US destination,to start services to India, or to boostfrequencies to Hong Kong. The latterdestination is currently served five timesa week by AirBridge, though Wraightsays in fact the frequency is in practiceoften boosted to seven times a week.

The carrier has also just takendelivery of two 1992-built NCA -200Fs,but these are being used to replace twoolder aircraft of the same type, whichhave been sold to Belgium start-upairline CargoB, for delivery in September.In the medium term, the carrierstill hopes to replace all its four -200Fs with -400F conversions, but Wraightsays the economics are not right atthe moment.