Despite the fact that the plane is no longer manufactured, it is anticipated to fly for another 20 years.
Boeing celebrated the delivery of its final 747 earlier this week, signaling the end of an era. Throughout the type’s 54-year program, several airlines used it, and nearly 1,600 aircraft were produced.
The Queen of the Skies had its debut flight on February 9, 1969. The plane started flying for Pan-Am a year later. Since it was a little ahead of its time and gave passengers a premium experience, airlines all over the world have grown to adore the aircraft over the years.
The prime ten
The Boeing 747 has been operated by a variety of companies over its lifetime, including both passenger and freight airlines. Only three of the carriers with a sizable fleet of these aircraft are based in the country.
The top 10 largest aircraft operators, excluding wet leases, are as follows, per the aviation analytics company Cirium:
Many of the 111 aircraft Atlas Air operated are still in use today.
Japan Airlines (JAL), including JAL Cargo, operated 109 different types of aircraft between 1970 and 2011.
Over a 22-year span, British Airways flew 103 different aircraft. The airline withdrew the last of its fleet of 747s when the pandemic struck in 2020.
With its first delivery in 1993, Air Atlanta Icelandic operated 100 aircraft. The airline only has 15 planes in service today.
95 aircraft make up Singapore Airlines’ fleet. The 747, which flew for the airline for the first time in 1973, was a mainstay of the passenger fleet for 39 years. There are now just seven 747s operating in its fleet for freight.
In 1970, United Airlines started working with the 747. operated 90 747s in total before the model was retired on November 7, 2017.
87 aircraft were flown by Korean Air, which currently has nine 747-8Is in service.
83 aircraft were flown by Lufthansa, which now has eight 747-400s and 19 747-8Is in service.
Cathay Pacific: 20 747s with a cargo configuration are currently in service.
Many of the 76 aircraft that Kalitta Air operated are still in use today.
Atlas: Expensive charters flying in welcoming skies
Atlas Air operates cargo and charter flights and is the 747 operator with the most aircraft in history. Atlas currently has five 747s available for charter operations. The 747-400 VIP and 747-400 HD both come in two different configurations.
According to the airline, the 747-400 VIP is designed for VIP service and has 10 first class suites for the utmost in luxury and comfort as well as 26 upper-deck business class seats for maximum privacy and comfort. A 15.4-inch video screen and a power plug are included in each first class seat.
The airline can accommodate 143 people in business class, which is great for long-haul flights. A 12.1-inch video screen and a power plug are reportedly included in each business class seat.
According to the airline, the 36-passenger economy class seats offer the greatest degree of flexibility. With fully equipped galleys that can accommodate anything from light snacks to multi-course offerings, a state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment system with in-seat power is also included.
The carrier uses the 747-400 HD, which has 23 business class seats at the front of the aircraft, for its “Comfort Service.” In order to provide even more flexibility, there are 66 economy class seats on the upper deck and 439 economy seats throughout the remainder of the aircraft.
According to Atlas, every seat has a personal video screen with channel selection. Additionally, high-density seating provides the airline with excellent scale economies, and flexible catering options for both short- and long-haul flights accommodate the preferences of the passengers.
The remaining Atlas 747s, which are made up of a variety of 747-400F, -400LCF, and -8F models, are used for cargo operations. The airline received N863GT, the final Boeing 747 ever built, earlier this week. The aircraft type is anticipated to remain in service until the year 2040, according to Ciriu