Planes mainly on the plain | Ralph Lauren

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It is one of the world’s most unusual parking lots.

Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs.
Camera IconAsia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs. Credit: Stephen Scourfield/The West Australian

Aircraft emblazoned with Jetstar, Singapore Airlines and Scoot logos on their tails join the 50 Cathay Pacific planes that I count on the ground at Alice Springs.

Qantas flight taking off next to Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs.
Camera IconQantas flight taking off next to Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs. Credit: Stephen Scourfield/The West Australian

There’s Cathay Dragon, with their red insignia, Cebu, Nok, DragonAir and HK Express.

Some of the Cathay Pacific planes. Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs.
Camera IconSome of the Cathay Pacific planes. Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs. Credit: Stephen Scourfield/The West Australian

For this is the Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, which has been bursting at the seams through the airline industry’s pandemic shutdown.

Some of the Cathay Pacific planes. Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs.
Camera IconSome of the Cathay Pacific planes. Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs. Credit: Stephen Scourfield/The West Australian

Central Australia’s is dry and arid with low humidity — and that’s viewed by aircraft manufacturers and airlines owners as ideal for storing planes. Desert conditions make it easier to protect against corrosion.

Some of the 50 Cathay Pacific planes. Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs.
Camera IconSome of the 50 Cathay Pacific planes. Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs. Credit: Stephen Scourfield/The West Australian

But the planes aren’t just locked and left on this 100 hectares lot. APAS puts them through a carefully planned maintenance schedule.

Asia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs.
Camera IconAsia Pacific Airline Storage facility, Alice Springs. Credit: Stephen Scourfield/The West Australian

Last months, there were 259.4m airline seats available globally — 27 per cent more than February. Worldwide capacity is growing by just over a million seats a month.



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