Today, LATAM Brazil announced the immediate retirement of up to 11 Airbus A350 between this week and next week. Therefore, the widebody fleet of LATAM Airline Group will become a solely Boeing operator type, with 17 Boeing 767, 10 Boeing 777-300ER, and 22 Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
Retiring the A350, why?
LATAM Airlines Group received its first A350XWB in 2015. Now, six years later, the company has decided to retire all their remaining A350s due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a report signed by LATAM Brazil’s CEO, Jerome Cadier, the company is telling all its workers the latest decisions to keep LATAM simpler, more sustainable, and competitive within the airline industry.
Jerome Cadier said,
“Among these decisions, one is the restructuration of our widebody fleet in Brazil. Therefore, today we announce that seven aircraft A350 are leaving our LATAM Brazil fleet immediately; next week, another four will go as well. With that, starting this month, LATAM’s widebody fleet will be composed of B777/B767, and B787.”
What’s the objective?
With this decision, LATAM is looking to have a smaller and more homogenous widebody fleet. The South American giant is currently under a Chapter 11 bankruptcy process and has already reduced the size of its fleet from 342 in December 2019 to 300 last year.
Moreover, due to the COVID-19 impact, LATAM is currently flying a very small amount of international flights. According to Planespotters.net, the whole of LATAM’s A350 fleet is currently parked.
We reached LATAM Airlines for a comment on this developing story, but so far we haven’t received an answer.
We could see this coming
Last year, LATAM surprised everybody when it retired the first two A350XWB it ever received. Those birds are currently sitting in Victorville, California, and were recently announced to be part of an auction.