April 2011

Sat 16 Apr 2011:

VH-XFA Airbus A330-243 (cn 365) of Virgin Blue Airlines.

The aircraft first visited Perth on 9 April 2011, and has since visited a number of times on what seems to be crew training or route proving flights.

This was its second visit – it arrived at 8.20pm on Friday 15 April, went to bay 17 at Terminal 3 Domestic, and then was towed around 11pm to Bay 60 at the International Terminal, as seen here. It was then towed back to the domestic side on 16 April before departing back to the eastern states.

The aircraft is an ex Emirates aircraft, formerly A6-EAB. It was painted all white, as Virgin Blue had yet to reveal its new corporate brand and name. The aircraft was later painted in the full Virgin Australia colours and named “Cottesloe Beach”.

Virgin’s A330 scheduled services commenced on 26 May 2011 with sistership VH-XFB.

Photos © Steve Jaksic

Wed 6 Apr 2011:

B-2472 Boeing 747-4J6 (cn 30158/1243) of Air China, parked at Bay 50 at Perth Airport.

This arrived the previous night using the callsign “Air China 003”. It arrived from Yangon in Myanmar, and was to depart for Canberra at 0900 on 7th April.

The aircraft brought China’s fourth highest ranking leader, Jia Qinglin – Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC). This was to start an official visit to Australia, intended to increase cooperation and bilateral relations between the two nations. 70% of all of Australia’s exports to China came from WA, while more than 80% of Chinese investment in Australia was in WA.

The aircraft is nicknamed by enthusiasts as “China Air Force One”, since it is used as a VIP and Presidential aircraft by the Chinese Government. On the rear fuselage it is marked as a “Boeing 747-400P”.

Photo © David Eyre

Wed 6 Apr 2011:

9V-SFM Boeing 747-412F (cn 32898/1333) of Singapore Airlines Cargo.

Seen here taxying in to park at Bay 56 – arrived as flight SQ7343 from Cape Town (South Africa), via a tech stop at Mauritius. It had Cirque du Soleil circus equipment aboard.

Photo © David Eyre

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