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Fleet Management

Exclusive: Join Me Onboard The Brand New SAS A350

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Today I got invited to SAS’s launch event of their first A350 at Oslo Gardemoen Airport, they are showcasing their first A350 aircraft before put it into service 28 January 2020, SAS is not going to phase out any of their A340 yet, but with every additional A350 they take delivery before 2023, will signal the departure of a A340, SAS currently holds 4 more A350-XWB production slots as an option; SAS is also phasing out 5 of their A330 Classic Model fleet with A330 enhanced version, in addition, 3 Airbus A321LR model will be delivered to allow flexibility on SAS long haul routes with big seasonality. All of SAS’s A350s will be based at the SAS hub at Copenhagen Airport and will operate on seven routes during the first year, including Chicago, Beijing, New York, Tokyo, Shanghai, Hong Kong and San Francisco.


“Although SAS won’t receive any Dreamliner in the near future, but every of their A350s got a cool ‘eyeliner’.” said by one SAS pilot.


Ingegerd Viking On Display
Ingegerd Viking On Display

As I was the last group to join the tour, the staff were already busy packing up the venue, so the check in process was rushed with no time for good old formalities. Since SAS technical base at Oslo airport does not have a big enough hangar for the A350, so the tour was happening in the nice weather of Scandinavia winter, which was a great excuse for my bad photography skills.


SAS A350 Seat Map
SAS A350 Seat Map
300 seats onboard (40 SAS Business / 32 SAS Plus / 228 SAS Go)

Practical Info Of SAS A350s:

Entrance View
Entrance View

RR Trent XWB engine
RR Trent XWB engine

  • The highest cabin ceiling in the industry,
  • A high definition tail camera,
  • 8 aircrafts ordered and waiting for delivery,
  • 300 seats onboard (40 SAS Business / 32 SAS Plus / 228 SAS Go),
  • 268 metric tons max. takeoff weight,
  • 50 tons max. load,
  • 66.9 m in length,
  • 64.8 m of wingspan,
  • 910 kmph/570 mph of cruising speed,
  • 13 800 km of range,
  • 0.028 liters/seat km fuel consumption,
  • RR Trent XWB engine.

Tail Camera Installed On SAS A350
Tail Camera Installed On SAS A350

SAS Business:

Business Class Main Cabin
Business Class Main Cabin

They have changed their business cabin signage with a completely new tone of orangish gold which is not consistent with SAS’s overall marketing colour palette; though it still looked good in terms of cabin soft mood setting.

Softer Sign of Business Cabin
Softer Sign of Business Cabin

  • 40 seats,
  • 1-2-1 layout,
  • Bed measurement of minimum 196cm,
  • In-flight entertainment screen 18,5” with higher resolution,
  • PC-power and high-power USB,
  • Separate control for backrest recline,
  • New bi-fold tray table including a personal device holder and more durable seat padding,
  • A durable threshold which gives a light foot massage,
  • A new welcoming area serves as a refreshment bar inflight;

Left Column of SAS Business Cabin
Left Column of SAS Business Cabin

Overall the business cabin seating haven’t change much except their new so-called light foot message feature with their floor threshold, which I personally think to include that in their press statement is more or less of a joke.

Business Seat Middle
Business Seat Middle

SAS’s choice of Thompson Vantage XL model seating is still excellent industry-wide, this might be one of the best business class seat in Europe, surely we’ve heart a lot about herringbone seating onboard many new aircrafts this few years, overall, you will get more personal space and flexibility on this forward-facing lay flat layout.

Business Seat Control Details
Business Seat Control Details

The new bi-fold tray works more smooth in terms of easiness to open and put back, the hardware parts really clicks on this seats.

Business Lay-flat Control Panel
Business Lay-flat Control Panel


I couldn’t really wrap my head around this when SAS first include this in their press statement:

‘The business class beds measure a minimum of 196cm, with some even longer, and SAS has installed a durable threshold that also can give a light foot massage.’

SAS WELCOMES THE FIRST A350 AND REVEALS UNIQUE FEATURES

Well, not until I saw this in person, they marketed as one of the unique SAS features where it will give you a light foot message, first of all, people have to be barefoot (or with a pair of socks) to actually being able to feel anything. Most people will be wearing shoes or turn their hard-earned-cash-paid business class seat into a bed, so 80% of the time onboard passengers won’t even think about manually scratching their feet on something as ineffective as this.

This can merely count as something unique, as this is a common knowledge among any industry to use bumps to add friction which improves steadiness.

So-called threshold that gives you so-called foot message
So-called threshold that gives you so-called foot message

Welcome Area & Business Cabin Bar:

The new welcome area also the business bar area are much bigger than their old ones, it certainly adds a little modern touch to their fleet while the crew doesn’t have to work on this area during the down time of flight, which gives passengers a more relaxing corner to get comfortable and maybe have some movement in the cabin.

Business Bar Area
Business Bar Area
Wine Storage & New Espresso Machine
Wine Cooler & Drinks Preparation Area

SAS been working hard on introducing new flavours onboard, this time, they will be serving this inclusive mock-tails which is pre-bottle to mix with liquor onboard, this will be served with a new row of fancy new glasses. I see this as a positive change, as it will add something signature to the SAS brand.

Special Mocktail Onboard SAS A350
Special Mock-tails Onboard SAS A350

Also come back better than ever is an espresso machine that (rumoured) to be actually working, I can’t wait to have some nicely crafted coffee while onboard A350 flights.

New Espresso Machine
New Espresso Machine

SAS Plus:

The new SAS plus cabin is now turned to a 2-4-2 layout which is in relation to A350’s wider-ness than their older A340s, however, this meant their will be less access for people sitting in the middle part with no direct aisle access. This is a new premium economy seating SAS has ordered for their A350, I am not sure if it would actually give more comfort than their current ones.

SAS Plus Last Row
SAS Plus Last Row

  • 32 seats,
  • 2-4-2 layout,
  • 13.3” high-resolution IFE screens,
  • Include a leg rest with a foot support feature,
  • PC-power and high-power USB,
  • A cabin divider,
  • Shared snack shop with SAS Go passengers;

SAS Plus Seat Detail
SAS Plus Seat Detail
SAS Plus Seat Control
SAS Plus Seat Control
SAS Plus Seat Back Pouch
SAS Plus Seat Back Pouch
SAS Plus Foot Support
SAS Plus Foot Support
SAS Plus IFE System
SAS Plus IFE System
SAS Plus Cabin Divider
SAS Plus Cabin Divider,
Indication Sign For SAS Plus Passengers To Use The Back Cabin Toilets

SAS Go:

SAS is following industry trends of adding more seats per row with a 3-3-3 configuration, they are able to squeeze more seats by removing the crew resting compartment on passenger level like the A340s, instead they will block some rows of overhead bins to make space for the crew resting compartment “upstairs”.

SAS Go Main Cabin
SAS Go Main Cabin
Refer To The Seat Map Above In 3-3-3 Configuration

  • 228 seats,
  • 3-3-3 layout,
  • 11.6” IFE screens with high resolution,
  • High-power USB,
  • A bi-fold meal table and a water bottle holder;

SAS Go Main Cabin First Row
SAS Go Main Cabin First Row
SAS Go Seat Tray Table
SAS Go Seat Tray Table
IFE System SAS Go
IFE System SAS Go

Another way for SAS to cut space for more seats is to have this new type of curved seat back table that cut into the seat ahead which saves them a decent amount of space cabin-wide.

Curved SAS Go Seat
Curved SAS Go Seat


We also got a chance to look inside their A350s cockpit, what a marvellous modern machine bird it is, I am certainly wowed-away by all of the details went into design the interface panel.

A350 Cockpit View
A350 Cockpit View
Cockpit A350 Control Panel
Cockpit A350 Control Panel

Not only has SAS add more seats in the human-cargo hold, so is the non-human-cargo AKA, the real cargo holding space, the new A350 will significantly increase their freighting capacity and no, people can’t come down to the cargo hold from the passenger level, so it’s not true.

Cargo Door SAS A350
Cargo Door SAS A350
SAS A350 Cargo Holder
SAS A350 Cargo Holder

More Pictures From The Tour:


Overall, It’s a great initiative for SAS to open its fleet to the public, though I can’t help but thinking how the program can be improved in many aspects, there’s a well-observed level of inconsistency in terms of airline staff capability, not just SAS, you can’t expect too much these days, but a man can always hope, one day one airline will get it right.

Until next time.

A350 Tail View
A350 Tail View
For the first time in 21 years, SAS has launched a brand new livery.

7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. SKBIRDY

    December 12, 2019 at 2:31 am

    wow thanks for the detailed info, that satisfy a lot of my curiosities.

  2. AirbusDnA

    December 12, 2019 at 3:35 am

    Oh nice I’ve hear wonderful things about the A350

  3. POLSKI SK

    December 14, 2019 at 5:24 am

    wish they fly this on some intraeuropean routes

  4. Null Hygge

    December 15, 2019 at 4:38 pm

    SAS just need to improve their Danish flight attendants attitude first

  5. ZI Corona Time

    March 25, 2020 at 9:56 am

    Anyone wonder if they made a good decision on buying these new planes before corona (covid-19) came, hehehehehe

  6. Pingback: SAS Suspends Hong Kong Route Indefinitely - ALBERT AVIATION - Airlines, Hotels & Lounges

  7. Wang Jia Wei

    April 23, 2020 at 9:54 pm

    Top traffic to this site right here. In Chinese we call it 顶流

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Airline Operation

Lufthansa Group To Implement Permanent Capacity Reduction Of 150 Aircraft By 2025

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Lufthansa A380

The Executive Board of Deutsche Lufthansa AG approved the third package within the Group-wide “ReNew” restructuring program earlier today.Due to significantly lower than expected air traffic recovery, Lufthansa’s Executive Board has today adopted several measures to cut costs and preserve cashflow, including reductions in fleet size and personnel.


The outlook for international air traffic has significantly worsened in recent weeks. With the summer travel season coming to an end, passenger and booking figures are declining again, after slight signs of recovery were still evident in July and August. In view of these developments, Lufthansa has finalised decisions on the third package within their restructuring program earlier today. 


Lufthansa Fleet Parked
Lufthansa Fleet Parked

In detail, the Executive Board adopted the following resolutions:

  • The capacity outlook for the passenger airlines will be significantly revised; the previous assumption that an average production level of 50 percent of the previous year’s value would be reached in the fourth quarter of the year no longer seems realistic. If the current trend continues, the available seat kilometres will probably only be in a range between 20 and 30 percent, compared to the previous year.
  • The medium term fleet planning will be adjusted and currently foresees  a permanent, Group-wide capacity reduction of 150 aircraft by the middle of this decade (starting point is the Group fleet including wet-leased aircraft).
  • In addition to the fleet changes already communicated, the following decisions have been made: After six Airbus A380s were finally taken out of service in the spring, the remaining eight A380s and ten A340-600s, which were previously intended for flight service, will be transferred to long-term storage and removed from planning. These aircraft will only be reactivated in the event of an unexpectedly rapid market recovery. In addition, the remaining seven Airbus A340-600s will be permanently decommissioned.
  • The fleet decisions mentioned above will result in a further impairment of up to EUR 1.1 billion. The amount is expected to be accounted for in the third quarter of the current year.
  • The previously announced personnel surplus amounting to 22,000 full-time positions will increase as a result of the decisions taken in regards to the third package within the restructuring program. The change in permanent staffing levels within flight operations will be further adjusted in regards to market development. The compensation and reduction of personnel surplus will be discussed with the responsible employee representatives.
  • Irrespective of the negotiations on reconciliations of interests and social plans for redundancies within the Lufthansa Group, the Executive Board’s objective remains agreeing on crisis packages with the collective bargaining partners that limit the number of necessary redundancies.
  • Despite the worsened outlook, the revised financial planning intends to further reduce cash outflows through strict cost management. The outflow of liquidity is to be reduced from currently around EUR 500 million per month to an average of EUR 400 million per month in winter 2020/21. The previously communicated Group target of returning to positive operating cash flows during 2021 is being reinforced.
  • A streamlined management structure with a 20 percent reduction of management positions is to be implemented in the first quarter of 2021. To simplify and clearly define responsibilities, the functional process organization (matrix) will be focused on core functions of Lufthansa Group Airlines. For all other areas, a new management model with clearly assigned responsibilities (decentralized or centralized, depending on the process) will be introduced.
  • The administrative office space will be reviewed worldwide and reduced by 30 percent in Germany.

Lufthansa Group Press Release


Lufthansa A380
Lufthansa A380

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