Last Update: at 22:07

Winter season

Swiss stores more aircraft in Jordan

Less demand, less aircraft needed. Swiss will transfer six more Airbus A320, A321 and A330 to Amman.

Tobias Gudat

Swiss Airbus A321 (HB-IOH): This aircraft spends the winter in Jordan.

For the coming winter season, Swiss expects demand to be very low. Because new travel restrictions are being introduced amid the Coronavirus pandemic, travellers are unsettled and so the airline’s services in the cold months are only running at around 30 per cent of last year’s level. For European flights, the airline will primarily use its smallest aircraft, the Airbus A220.

The Airbus A320s, on the other hand, will largely be stored over the winter, according to network manager Michael Trestl. On Tuesday morning (September 22), seven aircraft took off from Zurich for Amman. The Lufthansa subsidiary has been having aircraft maintained by Joramco in Jordan for many years.

A321 and A330 also go to Amman

The Airbus A320 Neo with the registration HB-JDB was also present during the bird migration. The airline only added the brand new aircraft to its fleet in July. However, it only flies with other aircraft to fly the crews of the other six aircraft back to Zurich in the evening.

The A320 HB-IJO and the A321 HB-IOF, HB-IOH and HB-IOL will remain in the Middle Eastern country throughout the winter. Swiss also transferred the two Airbus A330 HB-JHK and HB-JHJ to Jordan on Tuesday.

Difference to simple parking

The airline had already flown seven jets to Ammann in May. A spokeswoman explained that the time in Jordan was also used to carry out maintenance work that was due anyway. At the same time, the country has a dry and warm climate, which is ideal for aircraft standing around. «Basically, the due date of the maintenance work was decisive for the selection of the aircraft», said a spokeswoman.

Longer storage is different from simply parking the aircraft. System tests are carried out on the aircraft at regular intervals and their status is checked. It takes at least four days before an aircraft is ready for operation again after long-term storage. Depending on the duration, this time is extended.

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