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Photos: Few Former American A330s Remain in New Mexico Desert

The airline retired the fleet in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A former American A330-200 in storage (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

Once a staple of the US Airways long-haul fleet, few American Airbus A330s remain at an aircraft storage facility in Roswell, N.M. The aircraft joined the American fleet in 2013 as part of the merger with US Airways.

In 2000, US Airways received its first A330. The airline later operated both the A330-200 and -300 variants. Before being retired in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, American had 15 A330-200s and nine A330-300s in its fleet.

Stored former American A330-200s in Roswell, N.M. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

The fleet was largely flown on European routes from the carrier’s Philadelphia and Charlotte hubs. During the winter, it wasn’t uncommon to see the aircraft on a handful of domestic routes as well.

A stored former American A330-200 in the desert (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

Despite some 2023 rumors of the fleet’s return to service, that’s not the case. In Roswell, a handful of A330-200s remain intact, which had an average age of just over eight years old before retirement.

A scrapped ex-American A330-300 in Roswell (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

American’s A330s quickly fell victim to industry woes as a result of the pandemic. Except for one aircraft, which is in the later stages of the scrapping process, the older A330-300 fleet has been dismantled with only a few remnants remaining.

Tail of a former American A330-300 (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

The A330s joined the carrier’s Boeing 757s/767s and E190s when they were retired due to the pandemic. Now, the airline operates an all-Boeing widebody fleet of 787s and 777s.

Editor’s Note: Photos in this story were taken on March 2, 2024. 

Ryan Ewing
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  • Ryan Ewing

    Ryan founded AirlineGeeks.com back in February 2013 and has amassed considerable experience in the aviation sector. His work has been featured in several publications and news outlets, including CNN, WJLA, CNET, and Business Insider. During his time in the industry, he's worked in roles pertaining to airport/airline operations while holding a B.S. in Air Transportation Management from Arizona State University along with an MBA. Ryan has experience in several facets of the industry from behind the yoke of a Cessna 172 to interviewing airline industry executives. Ryan works for AirlineGeeks' owner FLYING Media, spearheading coverage in the commercial aviation space.

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