Airbus has today delivered its 100th A380 aircraft, to Malaysia Airlines (MAS) at Airbus’ Henri Ziegler Delivery Centre in Toulouse, France. This brings MAS’ total number of A380s to six.

MAS is one of nine airlines currently flying the six-year-old aircraft model, which has the capacity to carry 525 passengers in a comfortable three-class configuration, and up to more than 800. This significant load ability allows airlines operating A380s to reduce frequencies, operation costs and emissions, and has resulted in Airbus receiving a total order book of 262 such aircraft to date, from 20 customers.

The Malaysian flag carrier, meanwhile, has announced that it will be making significant capacity increases starting March 31.

“The capacity increase is made possible as we take delivery of an average one 160-seater B737-800 aircraft per month, two more 494-seater A380 and four 283-seater A330-300 aircraft this year,” said MAS group chief executive officer Encik Ahmad Jauhari Yahya.

These changes include increased frequencies on the B737-800 Kuala Lumpur-Manila service (from 25 to 28 per week), the B737-800 Kuala Lumpur-Yangon and Kuala Lumpur-Colombo routes going from daily to 10 a week, and the introduction of the B777-200 to the Kuala Lumpur-Dhaka route.

The present daily B777-200 and twice daily B737-800 return flights between Kuala Lumpur and Denpasar will also have a daily capacity increase of 20 per cent when one of the daily B737-800 services is replaced by a B777-200. All these changes will occur on or before April 1.

On June 17, meanwhile, the five-times weekly A330-300 Kuala Lumpur-Brisbane service will go daily, adding 566 seats in each direction.

Then on August 15, capacity on the Kuala Lumpur-Bandar Seri Begawan route will increase by 11 per cent when the four-times-weekly B737-400 services will be replaced by B737-800 flights.

The carrier has yet to reveal what it will do with its newly delivered A380, but did however recently put one of the superjumbos on its Kuala Lumpur-Paris service (see here), which saw a weekly capacity increase of 1,484 seats in each direction. The route was previously serviced by a 282-seat B777-200.

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Alex Andersson