Due to the anticipated demand for air travel during the next summer travel season, Lufthansa will return all of its stored Airbus A340-600 aircraft to service.
A Lufthansa spokeswoman confirmed in an email to AeroTime that the airline, which has 10 Airbus A340-600s in its fleet, will reactivate the aircraft in Q2 2023, “to satisfy the increasing demand for long-haul flights for summer 2023.” According to the company’s spokesman, five aircraft will be based at Frankfurt Airport (FRA), and the other five will be based at Munich Airport (MUC).
According to data from planespotters.net, six Lufthansa Airbus A340-600s are currently marked as storage. One plane is kept in FRA and another in MUC, while another is presently at Ninoy Aquino International Airport. Of the four aircraft, two are parked at Teruel Airport (TEV) in Spain (MNL). According to data from flightradar24.com, D-AIHU had been flying during December 2022, but its final flight was on December 27, and it hasn’t been flying since. Its final airport of arrival was MUC.
All 10 of them have eight First Class seats, making them the only other aircraft in Lufthansa’s fleet (apart from the Boeing 747-8) to have the most opulent interior.
The carrier’s seat maps show that the A340-600s feature 213 Economy, 44 Business, and 32 Premium Economy seats. First class space is available on Lufthansa’s Airbus A380s, which are also expected to resume regular service in the coming months.
In contrast, the last several years have been turbulent for the Airbus A340-600s. When COVID-19 first broke out, Lufthansa retired each one, and seven of them left the airline’s fleet before the end of 2020. However, the fate of the particular aircraft type fluctuated as borders opened, closed, and then opened again. All of the four-engine jets were deactivated by Lufthansa in April 2020, but the airline maintained an apparent open mind about perhaps bringing back at least some of the aircraft in the future. A carrier representative stated at the time that a decision would be made later on regarding “the future usage of the aircraft or a possible reactivation of a maximum of ten aircraft.”
Before repeating the pattern of storing them and then bringing them back for the following summer season in 2022, the German carrier brought back five Airbus A340-600s to support the high-demand season in summer 2021. Following that, in March 2022, Lufthansa turned six of the wide-body planes back on.