Where to catch the Boeing 747-8

Posted by Matt Falcus | Posted in Abu Dhabi, Asia, Frankfurt, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Luxembourg, Middle East, Miscellaneous Spotting, North America, UK, USA, Western Europe | Posted on 16-08-2012


Boeing’s latest incarnation of the queen of the skies – the 747 – is now in operation with eight carriers and a number of private operators worldwide.

Featuring extended length, capacity, range, and a variety of technological advances both inside and out, the type is the height of aviation design.

It is available in passenger, cargo and VIP configurations; however, the cargo variant has proved far more popular, and more airlines are currently flying this option.

So where can you see the Boeing 747-8 in operation? Here are are the main airports:

Everett Paine Field
Boeing’s airfield to the north of Seattle where the Boeing 747-8 is built. You’ll see all aircraft flight testing here, and sitting on the flight line as they are fitted out. You can head to the Future of Flight center for its observation deck and watch the 747’s flying close by you.

London Stansted
Global Supply Systems flies three 747-8’s on behalf of British Airways Cargo to destinations worldwide. However, their home base is London Stansted airport in the UK.

Hong Kong Chek Lap Kok
Cathay Pacific ordered ten Boeing 747-8’s for its cargo network, and was one of the launch customers for the type. Their Hong Kong base is one of the busiest hubs for the type, as it also sees examples from other cargo airlines visit.

Frankfurt Main
Lufthansa is the only airline to operate the passenger version of the 747-8 so far (other airlines have the type on order), and their Frankfurt base is where it flies from. It operates to destinations such as Washington Dulles on a daily basis. In total, 20 747-8’s will join Lufthansa as they replace their older 747-400’s.

Cargolux was the first airline to take delivery of a Boeing 747-8. The airline ordered seven of the type, which are based at Luxembourg. However, they can be seen on their round-the-world network to many far flung airports.

Tokyo Narita
Nippon Cargo Airlines are based at Tokyo Narita Airport in Japan. They ordered 14 Boeing 747-8’s, and the type has already entered service on long haul cargo operations.

Abu Dhabi
The first VIP configured Boeing 747-8 was delivered to the Abu Dhabi Amiri Flight as a royal transport aircraft. It flies from Abu Dhabi on official business.