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How to Catch a Ride on North America’s First A350-900XWB

Delta’s first A350-900XWB after its second test flight (Photo: Clément Alloing)

Delta is getting even closer to becoming the first airline in North America to operate the Airbus A350XWB after the first aircraft completed its second test flight and first in the airline’s livery. Once delivered in July, the aircraft will fly its first scheduled flight between Detroit (DTW) and Tokyo Narita (NRT) on October 30.

The airline is planning to base its first A350-900XWB aircraft in Detroit, the current hub of Delta’s 747 fleet. As Delta takes delivery of its brand new aircraft, it is also in the process of retiring the iconic Queen of the Skies.

Delta’s A350-900XWB touches down after a successful test flight (Photo: Clément Alloing)

With an average age of 25.9 years old, the 747 is the oldest aircraft currently flying in Delta’s fleet. The 747 currently flies to Tokyo, Shanghai, and Seoul from Detroit.

Delta’s A350 taxis in Toulouse (Photo: Clément Alloing)

As Delta prepares to welcome a new aircraft to its fleet, it will also be introducing the new Delta One Suite onboard the A350. The suite will initially be flying between the U.S. and Asia until other aircraft in Delta’s fleet are retrofitted with the new configuration. Delta’s new international Premium Economy will also be introduced on the A350.

Delta aims to take delivery of their first A350 in July (Photo: Clément Alloing)

Additional routes for Delta’s A350 have also been announced. Flights between Detroit and Seoul (ICN) will be operated on the new aircraft on alternating days beginning on November 18. The airline will also commence A350 service on alternating days between Detroit and Beijing (PEK) on Jan.17, 2018, until commencing daily flights on February 23.

Mateen Kontoravdis


  • Mateen Kontoravdis

    Mateen has been interested in aviation from a very young age. He got his first model airplane at six and has been airplane spotting since he was nine years old. He has always had a passion for aviation and loves learning about different aspects within the industry. In addition to writing for AirlineGeeks, Mateen is also an editor for his high school’s newspaper. You can also find him on Instagram (@Plane.Photos) where he enjoys sharing his aviation photography with thousands of people everyday.

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