Cargolux expands 747-8 network
Cargolux, Europe’s largest dedicated cargo airline, marked the first weekend of February by adding four new destinations to its B747-8 freighter network. In the process, the Luxembourg-based carrier flew the first-ever 747-8 services to Xiamen, China; Latacunga, Ecuador; and Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.
The inaugural service to South America was achieved with the cooperation of the Aguadilla Airport Authority and the Puerto Rico Port Authority, Cargolux said, thus allowing the return flight to touch down in Aguadilla.
Seventy Cargolux destinations are now cleared for 747-8F operations, with Vietnam expected to approve its airports in the near future. This will enable the carrier to use the new freighter–it currently operates six–across almost its entire network. Cargolux commented that Brazil remains one of the last countries in its network that still has not approved its airports for 747-8 operations, “a situation that remains a challenge”. It is limited to B747-400F services in Brazil.
Stansted Airport, the U.K.’s second largest airfreight hub after Heathrow, separately announced that Cargolux is to call with a scheduled service for the first time when it inaugurates a 747 on a twice-weekly routing to Hong Kong and Luxembourg.
Stansted currently handles more than 200,000 tonnes of cargo per year. Mark Souter, head of airline relations at the airport, said, “Stansted offers excellent operational capacity, airfield and infrastructure reliability and easy access to the road network, together with the ability to operate around the clock.”
Mark Boffee, Cargolux country manager U.K., said, “Our customers can now benefit from a fast and reliable airfreight connection to the worldwide Cargolux network that significantly cuts down on shipping times."