Lufthansa & Cathay

To follow up on yesterday’s post about the new Lufthansa/Cathay Pacific cargo partnership, we offer some fleet and traffic details, and (it is Friday) some videos featuring the two airlines.

Starting with the fleets:

  • Both Lufthansa and Cathay operate large fleets of widebody passenger aircraft, with significant (and growing) belly capacity. Lufthansa has 107, including A330s, A340s, A380s, 747-400s, and 747-8s. Cathay’s 133 widebody passenger aircraft include A330s, A340s, 777s and 747-400s.
  • On the freighter side, Lufthansa Cargo’s seventeen freighters include twelve MD-11Fs and five 777Fs, while Cathay operates thirteen 747-8Fs and ten 747-400Fs, for a total of twenty-three.

And turning to traffic

  • In 2014, the most recent year for which full data are available, the Lufthansa Group reported a total of 10.7 billion RTKs of international freight flown, second only to Emirates; while Cathay was right behind, with 10.0 billion RTKs flown.
  • More recently, Lufthansa has struggled, with RTKs declining in 2015 and early 2016, as competitors from the Middle East, Turkey, and Russia eat into its Asia-Europe traffic. Cathay did better in 2015, reporting full-year traffic up 5.4%; but is also facing problems in 2016, with first-quarter traffic down 4.8%.

What impact the new partnership will have on the two carriers’ fleets and traffic remains to be seen (it won’t come into effect until the beginning of 2017), but in the meantime, here are a few videos to help with your weekend need to stay connected to our industry.

We’ll start with a really striking short film of a Cathay 747-400F landing at Frankfurt. Lovely light, and beautiful condensation on the wings.

Now a “Pilots’ Eye View” of the action on a Lufthansa MD-11F

Next up is another view from the cockpit, but this time it is a Lufthansa MD-11F as seen from the cockpit of another aircraft that is slowly overtaking it in the sky.

And finally, an illustration of why freighters will always be neccessary

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