Airbus megaliner has made its first commercial journey, from Singapore to Sydney.
Sydney Airport had made many changes in order to accommodate the vast aircraft new bridges had to be constructed, as well as a taxi way realigned and an under-runway tunnel strengthened.
The plane carried 450 passengers of its 850 capacity, each of whom had purchased tickets in an online charity auction for between $560 and $100,380. They marvelled at the sheer scale of the jetliner, with a wing span almost the size of a football pitch and the two classes of economy, split over two decks, with stairs in between the two, as pointed out by passenger Laurence Watts.
Airbus now has 165 offers for its A380, with Singapore Airlines itself expecting delivery of nine more of the aeroplanes five during 2008. However, production delays, sky-high costs and soaring order numbers for the rival Boeing 787 Dreamliner mean critics are yet to be convinced of the success of the project.