Monday 19 Apr: After a short stay in Sydney (arrived Saturday), USAF KC-135R departed back to Kadena Air Base in Japan today. The KC-135R is a derivative of the Boeing B707, and a re-engine program in the mid 1980s, saw CFM56 engines fitted, providing twice the power of the original Pratt & Whitney J57-P-59W turbojet engines. 63-8021 is 57 years old
Friday 26 Mar: After flying Jakarta-Brisbane yesterday, and Brisbane-Sydney this afternoon, it was great to see another Boeing B737-800 join the growing Regional Express (Rex) Fleet. VH-RQP was absolutely gleaming as she taxied up to Bay 96 at Sydney Airport, after touching down on Runway 16L at 1427L. With the Rex Network expanding to include the Gold Coast and Adelaide on 29MAR21, VH-RQP will soon be seen in the skies of south-eastern Australia
Tuesday 23 Mar: The NSW Rural Fire Service Cessna 560 flew into Sydney Airport this morning from Richmond RAAF Base, then departed soon after to Coffs Harbour. The visit might be related to the Flood Emergency on the mid north coast.
Thuesday 18 Feb: It may have been a quiet morning at Sydney Airport today, however the afternoon brought a real surprise. Garuda Indonesia Boeing B737-800 PK-GNV operated GA7240 Chennai-Batam-Perth-Sydney, touching down on Runway 16R at 1807L. Garuda use Airbus A330-300 and Boeing B777-300ER on their normal SYD services, so this was probably a Repatriation Flight. Conditions: Overcast with passing rain showers, and low light.
Wednesday 17 Feb: Welcome to the new girl in town, introducing Air Calin’s new Airbus A320Neo F-OTIB “Tibarama” on final for Runway 16R at Sydney Airport this morning. The delivery flight from Toulouse started on 24DEC2020, at tracked via Dubai, Bangkok, and Darwin, with the arrival in Noumea on 27DEC2020. F-OTIB has been operating flights from Noumea to Wallis Hififo since delivery, and this morning’s SB901 service from Noumea, was the first to Australia.
Tuesday 26 Jan: Australia Day seemed like the perfect opportunity to showcase their new Boeing B737-800 in full Regional Express livery, so why not do a Sydney Harbour flypast at 1,500ft. VH-RQC departed Runway 34L at 1000L, then headed south to the Royal National Park, before heading back up the coast, and into Sydney Harbour for a flypast from the east, and then from the west. They then tracked up the coast to Long Reef, and turned left to St. Ives, ready to join the approach, with a right circuit for Runway 34L. Perfect blue skies for a beautiful livery on the B737-800
Friday 15 Jan: It was an early “Wheels Up” this morning for ATI’s Boeing B767-300ERF, making her final departure from Sydney Airport. Instead of the usual departure to Darwin, and then onto Hong Kong and Guam, this morning N395CM departed off Runway 16R to Honolulu at 0812L. N395CM has visited SYD 112 since during her 7 month contract on the route, and it has been a pleasure to watch this beautiful aircraft during this time. All the best to the ATI Team
Thursday 24 Dec: Regional Express (Rex) received their Christmas Present a day early this year, with the first of their new Boeing B737-800 Fleet in the new livery, arriving at Sydney Airport this morning. VH-RQC was repainted in Jakarta, and this was the delivery flight to Sydney via Brisbane. Two more Rex B737-800 are in the paint shops, one in Wagga, and one in Jakarta. Rex plan to start operating their new Domestic east coast routes from March 2021. The Sydney-Melbourne route is the second busiest in the world, with 54,519 flights per year, and Brisbane-Sydney is the eighth busiest in the world, with 33,765 flight each year. Rex currently operate a fleet of 60 Saab 340 aircraft, on some 1,500 weekly flights to 59 destinations. Two ARFF Rosenbauer Fire Tenders were on hand for a Water Cannon salute, as VH-RQC approached the Terminal.
Thursday 3 Dec: After shooting some good images of the Olympus B757-200F Freighter last night, I was hoping the light of day would bring some sunny close-ups. Unfortunately we had another totally overcast day, so maybe another time. SX-APX has been operating Training Flights, and it looks like she will be quite the regular at Sydney Airport. Before operating with Olympus, SX-APX was an American Airlines bird (N633AM), clocking up some 22 years with them
Thursday 3 Dec: The surprise visitors just keep on coming at Sydney Airport, with a Royal Thai Air Force Embraer ERJ-135LR arriving this afternoon. This aircraft is used in a Maritime Patrol role by the RTN, and can also be setup in a Medivac configuration. 2112 touched down on Runway 34L at 1419L, and taxied to Execujet on the DOM5 Apron. The aircraft is in Sydney for maintenance.
Tuesday 1 Dec: I’m already a big fan of the Embraer E190-E2, however this Air Kiribati livery really makes the aircraft look absolutely stunning. The Pacific Island colours and motif on the tail, the large bold titles, and the National Flag on the nose, a beautiful piece of design. This is the first of two E190-E2 for Air Kiribati, and the aircraft will be operated by Bankstown based Pionair. Air Kiribati had planned to operate services to Brisbane this year, however Covid-19 has put that on hold for a while. Today’s visit to Sydney Airport by VH-IKJ was a Training Flight, however it would be great to see the Airline establish scheduled services to Sydney.
Thursday 19 Nov: When Garuda Indonesia Airbus A330-300 PK-GHC arrived at Sydney Airport this morning, she was perfectly prepared to meet Biosecurity, Public Health, and Border Force Officers. PK-GHC is now painted in the “Mask On" livery, making her a real eye catcher on the field. I believe Cargolux started the trend when they painted a mask on one of their Boeing B747-8F Freighters. Operating as GA7120 from Jakarta, PK-GHC touched down on Runway 34L at 1116L, and after a short 3 hour stay, headed off to Auckland, and then onto Melbourne (arriving 0053L Friday).
Tuesday 11 Aug: After suspending services to Sydney Airport on the 31st January 2020, Hainan are now operating their services again, replacing their usual Airbus A330-300 aircraft with Boeing B787-9 Dreamliners. Services from Beijing, Wuhan, and Shenzhen resumed on the 8th August 2020.
Tuesday 21 Jul: China Eastern Boeing B777-300ER B-2002 made a first visit to Sydney Airport in the new "China International Import Expo CIIE" livery this morning.
Friday 12 Jun: The firsts just keep on coming, first visit to at Sydney Airport, and first of Type to visit for Asiana Airlines. Landing just after dawn this morning, Airbus A350-900 HL7771 completed the 8,582km sector from Seoul in 10hrs 6min, and became the first Asiana A350-900 to visit Sydney. The return flight to Seoul is scheduled for 0930L Saturday
Wednesday 10 Jun: Yet another special visitor at Sydney Airport today, with Etihad Boeing B777-300ER A6-ETH arriving last night at 2038L, and departing again tonight. This is a first visit for A6-ETH, and from memory, a first visit by a B777-300ER in the new livery. This shot of the aircraft at Bay 36 is the only daylight shot possible for this visit.
Monday 08Jun: A departure delay from last night to 0710L this morning, and the forecast wind and rain clearing overnight, proved to be a perfect opportunity to catch Mongolian Airlines in the best possible light. Boeing B767-300ER JU-1021 departed from Runway 16R just 30min after sunrise, operating Repatriation Flight MGL7182 to Ulaanbaatar, via Lapu-Lapu, Cebu. This would have to be the best commercial movement at Sydney Airport this year
Monday 01 Jun: Qatar Cargo made a special visit to Sydney Airport this morning, operating as QR8418 Hamad-Singapore-Sydney-Hong Kong. Boeing B777F A7-BFP touched down on Runway 34L at 0610L, and then departed again off Runway 34L at 0903L. What a departure, rotating in only 1,350m. The aircraft is just 15 months old, and looks immaculate, like all the Qatar aircraft
Monday 01 Jun: It has definitely been an historic visit to Sydney Airport by Myanmar Airways International, operating a Repatriation Flight because of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Airbus A319 XY-ALK arrived late Saturday evening as 8M1002 from Yangon via Denpasar, and departed this morning as 8M1003 to Yangon via Denpasar
Friday 23 May: SriLankan Airlines completed their inaugural Colombo-Sydney service this afternoon, although with the COVID-19 Pandemic, this was a cargo only flight. Airbus A330-200 4R-ALB completed the 9,032km ALK606 sector in 9hr 45min, touching down on Sydney Airport’s Runway 16R at 1540L. Welcome to Sydney Sri Lankan
Sunday 17 May: A Repatriation Flight with a difference, onboard this Arme?e de l'Air Airbus A400M. F-RBAP completed the Tahiti-Sydney flight with only 5 Pax onboard, landing on Sydney Airport Runway 16R at 1423L. The A400M is scheduled to depart back to Tahiti tomorrow, presumably with more Pax.
Thursday 14 May: Another Repatriation Flight at Sydney Airport this morning, and probably the rarest so far. Yes, it was Saudi Arabian Airlines B777-300ER HZ-AK43 touching down on Runway 16R at 0804L, having flown direct from Riyadh as SVA3052. The aircraft carries the “Formula-E” livery, a partnership with the ABB FIA Formula E “All Electric” Championship. After a 2hr 47min turnaround, HZ-AK43 was in the air again back to Dammam. Conditions: Overcast and wet (backlit)
Tuesday 12 May: Sichuan Airlines definitely added a little extra colour at Sydney Airport today, when Airbus A330-300 B-5945 touched down on Runway 34L at 1421L. This special livery promotes the 31st Summer Universiade 2021 in Chengdu. B-5945 was only repainted in late November 2019, and this is her first visit to Sydney in the new livery.
Tuesday 12 May: Cathay Pacific Airbus A350-1000 B-LXK made an impressive departure this afternoon, heading back to Hong Kong as CX101, after a 3hr 29min turnaround. B-LXK was operating a "Cargo Only" service because of the COVID-19 Pandemic, and with a reduced load, was up early from Runway 34L.
Thursday 30 Apr: Poor weather conditions at Sydney Airport, and a 1hr 6min departure delay, made liftoff after sunset unfortunately, for Iberia A350-900 EC-NBE, heading back to Madrid via Bangkok. Best wishes to all the Spanish Citizens onboard this Repatriation Flight during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Thursday 9 Apr: Another Coronavirus Cargo Charter Flight arrived at Sydney Airport last night, with Suparna Boeing B747-400 B-1340 touching down on Runway 16R at 2118L. B-1340 flew in direct from Wuhan in China, delivering some much needed medical supplies. Suparna use the Call Sign “Yangtze River”, and Flight time for the 8,506km sector was 9hr 6min. B-1340 is seen here departing Runway 16R back to Wuhan at 1244L today.
Wednesday 8 Apr: The Coronavirus Repatriation Flights just keep on coming, and today it was a second visit by KLM. Boeing B777-200ER PH-BQO operated today’s service as KLM827 from Amsterdam via Kuala Lumpur, and should depart back to Amsterdam tomorrow. This aircraft also has the “100” title, celebrating the Airline’s 100th Anniversary. Quite dull and overcast conditions this afternoon
Tuesday 7 Apr: Sichuan Airlines have not operated to Sydney Airport since 02FEB20 because of COVID-19, so I was surprised today when Sichuan Airbus A330-300 B-5929 operated a special CSC8659 cargo service, touching down on Runway 16R at 1317L. Although this aircraft has visited SYD three times, in 2016-17, this is the first time with the Wuliangye livery.
Sunday 5 Apr: KLM Boeing B777-200ER PH-BQK operated a Coronavirus (COVID-19) Repatriation Flight from Sydney to Amsterdam via Kuala Lumpur.
Saturday 4 Apr: Edelweiss Airbus A340-300 HB-JMF operated a Coronavirus (COVID-19) Repatriation Flight from Sydney to Zurich via Penang.
Friday 3 Apr: Condor Boeing B767-300ER D-ABUB operated a Coronavirus (COVID-19) Repatriation Flight from Sydney to Frankfurt via Phuket.
Monday 30 Mar: Austrian Airlines operated a Coronavirus Repatriation Flight today, with OE-LPD routing Vienna-Sydney direct as AUA1028, with a Flight Time of 17hrs 55min. The return flight was AUA1457, routing Sydney-Penang-Vienna.
Friday 13 Mar: With things being much quieter on the International Commercial front at Sydney Airport because of COVID-19, it was great to see a Royal Australian Air Force Pilatus PC-21 arrive at SYD this morning. A54-037 also carries the RAAF Rouettes Aerobatic Team livery, which now has this edgy Red, White, and Blue scheme. The PC-21 has a higher roll rate, more power, and more speed, than the PC-9 it replaces. I believe this is only the second PC-21 to visit SYD
Wednesday 29 Jan: It was quite a surprise this morning to see Bomber 912 heading to Sydney Airport from Canberra, apparently for engineering to work on some technical issues with the aircraft. It was only a short hop from Canberra, before N522AX was on approach for Runway 16R, touching down at 1341L. After vacating at BRAVO8, it held on Taxiway BRAVO while ATC confirmed the parking arrangements, then proceeded on BRAVO to BRAVO1 to meet the Tug
Friday 10 Jan: The Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) Pilatus PC-24 is a rare visitor to Sydney Airport, seen here arriving from Adelaide operating a patient transfer. The RFDS were the first operator of the PC-24 in an Aero-Medical role, it has a top speed of 815kph, and can perform short take-offs and landings on unsealed strips. The cabin has room for three stretchered patients, and two Medical Teams.
Friday 3 Jan: United Airlines Boeing B777-300ER N2749U operated the UA863 service from San Francisco to Sydney this morning, and is making her first visit to Sydney Airport. N2749U was only delivered on 06DEC19, and is the first United B777 to be painted in their new livery.
Friday 15 Nov: Qantas operated the second of three Project Sunrise Research flights today, with VH-ZNJ arriving at Sydney Airport direct from London Heathrow. The 17,596 km flight took 19hr 19min to complete, and Passengers and Crew saw two sunrises. The centenary livery features every Qantas logo since 1920, and is stunning - Congratulations Qantas on your Centenary Year
Tuesday 27 Aug: Qantas has been leasing two Atlas Air B747-400F Freighters for a number of years now, and today we saw the first B747-8F Freighter used on this route. The two existing B747-400F will be replaced by the B747-8F, making 20% more capacity available to Qantas Cargo, and improved operating economics. The two new aircraft are again leased from Atlas Air, operated by Atlas Pilots, using Qantas Flight Numbers. This inaugural B747-8F service was operated by N856GT.
Monday 26 Aug: Malindo Air started serving Sydney on the 15th August 2019, and although normally operated by a Malindo B737-800, on some days a full Batik livery B737-800 has operated the service. Malindo will start operating their B737-900 aircraft on this service later in the year, and on the 24th August 2019, we were fortunate to see a B737-900 operate this service (9M-LNF). The OD171/OD172 service operates Kuala Lumpur- Sydney return, via Denpasar.
Sunday 25 Aug: After a 2 day visit to Sydney by this French Air Force C-10H Hercules, 5119 departed Sydney Airport as CTM1408, bound for Darwin. It's very rare to see a French Hercules in this part of the world.
Thurssday 22 Aug: Virgin Australia have started operating the first of five B737-800 aircraft, which will progressively be fitted with the Split Scimitar wingtips. VA estimate the winglets will save 160,000kg (200,000ltr) of fuel, and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 515 tonnes, per aircraft per year. VH-YIV, which is the first aircraft to have the new winglets fitted, seen here departing Sydney Airport for Queenstown NZ this morning, in what was her first daylight visit to SYD with the Scimitars.
Monday 5 Aug: After attending the AUSMIN Meeting in Sydney on Sunday 4th August, US Secretary Of Defence Mark Esper departed Sydney this morning, on-board USAF E-4B (B747-200) 73-1676.
Wednesday 24 Jul: As part of Embraer's Asia Pacific Tour 2019, their E195-E2 visited Brisbane and Sydney for sales/demonstration events. I was fortunate to be invited along to the Sydney Inspection, and was very impressed by this beautiful special livery edition of the type. The aircraft can be configured with 120-146 seats, and burns 10% less fuel than the Airbus A220 (Bombardier C Series) over a 600nm sector. Embraer took the opportunity to improve some aspect of the original E Series airframe, while the aerodynamic improvements, and new Pratt & Whitney PW1900G engines, have reduced operating and maintenance costs.
Monday 1 Jul: Arriving on Runway 34R at Sydney Airport this afternoon was United States Marine Corps Lockheed KC-130J 168073, making its way to DOM6 Bay 99, right next to the Security Fence. This aircraft belongs to Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 234 in Fort Worth Texas, and is equipped with Drogue In-Flight Refueling Pods on each wing.
Monday 24 Jun: Royal Flying Doctor Service Pilatus PC-24 VH-FMP made a first to Sydney Airport tonight, operating a Patient Transfer from Adelaide. The aircraft's Medical fit-out was done at the Pilatus Factory in Switzerland, and has a specially engineered auto-stabilising stretcher-loading device, that loads patients in a horizontal position, as opposed to other aircraft with inclined stretcher slides. The cabin has room for three stretchered patients, and two Medical Teams.
Saturday 15 Jun:FedEx have changed their Singapore-Sydney FX6013 service from an MD-11 to a B777-FS2, with N850FD operating today's service. The B777-FS2 have been operating for eight days now, and Sydney Airport "Fleet Chasers" have been spoilt, with eight different aircraft so far.
Saturday 11 May: Qantas Boeing B787-9 Dreamliner VH-ZND operated her first service on the QF127 route to Hong Kong on Saturday morning. Strong westerly winds forced operations onto Runway 25, providing a close up look at the beautiful livery, inspired by the 1991 artwork "Yam Dreaming, painted by "Emily Kame Kngwarreye". Emily's names appears on the nose of the aircraft.
Monday 29 April: The Royal Australian Air Force took delivery of their first Dassault Falcon 7X on the 16th April 2019, and the aircraft immediately started Training Flights prior going operational. A56-001 made her first visit to Sydney Airport on the 29th April, and the RAAF livery looks very nice on the 7X. Two more Falcon 7X aircraft will join the RAAF VIP fleet over the next few months.
Monday 1 Apr: China Eastern started operating their new Airbus A350-900 aircraft on the MU561/562 Shanghai-Sydney route today, replacing the A330-200 that was used previously. The airline currently has four A350-900 aircraft in their fleet, with two more to be delivered from Airbus.
Sunday 24 Mar: This morning it was Bienvenue to the Armee De L'Air (French Air Force), arriving at Sydney Airport in their CASA IPTN CN-235, registered 066. There were about 10-12 personnel on-board, and the rear cargo door was loaded with what looked to be personal baggage. The aircraft was last here on 29/07/2018, so this might be the annual changing of the guard in New Caledonia.
Wednesday 13 Mar: This Bombardier Global 7500 is on a world demonstration tour, and is seen here arriving at Sydney Airport. C-FXAI landed on Runway 16L and then taxied to DOM6 Bay 98. With a 32.7m wingspan, the aircraft had to be towed to the DOM5 Corporate Apron with wing-walkers, as it exceeded the maximum 30m wingspan for the DOM5 Taxiway.
Monday 4 Mar: The United States Marines arrived at Sydney Airport this afternoon, with their Lockheed KC-130J Hercules touching down on Runway 34L, and taxiing to DOM6 Bay 99A. This is a relatively young aircraft, only being delivered in May 2015. To all the crew, welcome to Sydney, and enjoy your short stay with us.
Sunday 17 Feb: When it comes to Corporate Jet travel, the Deer Jet Boeing B787-8 Dreamliner it right at the top, and that includes the charter fee of $74,000 per hour. This is the only B788 Dreamliner Business Jet in the world at present, and it was just spending a night in Sydney, after visiting the Gold Coast for a week.
Saturday 16 Feb: Garuda Airbus A330-300 PK-GHD has visited Sydney Airport many times since September 2016, however this morning she made her first visit in a Garuda Retro livery from the 1969-1985 period.
Saturday 5 Jan: When you arrive 3hr 15min late at 2254L, and only 6min before curfew, there's no way you're leaving until 0600L the next morning. This was the case last night at Sydney Airport for Hawaiian Airlines HA451 operated by A330 200 N383HA - It does however make for a beautiful sunrise departure - Aloha
Friday 28 Dec: When it comes to Private Jets, this Boeing B777-200ER N777UK is right up there with the best. Arriving from Auckland on Runway 34L at 1729, the aircraft dropped off its 12 Pax, and then headed back out to Canberra to park. With the New Year's fireworks only a few days away, parking is at a premium, and the influx of Corporate jets is already underway.
Sunday 23 Dec: Lachlan and Sarah Murdoch and family arrived home in Sydney early this morning, on-board their new Gulfstreamo G650ER N988NC. The aircraft touched down on Runway 16L at Sydney Airport at 0617 from Honolulu, and taxied to the DOM5 Corporate Apron.
Friday 21 Dec: And the honours for operating the first Boeing B737 MAX at Sydney Airport goes to Fiji Airways. This morning’s FJ917/918 service from Nadi was operated by the brand new Boeing B737 MAX 8 DQ-FAB, and didn’t the arrival look FABulous. The aircraft has made one off visits to Adelaide, Brisbane, Wellington, and now Sydney.
Monday 17 Dec: The Dubai Air Wing Boeing B747-400F A6-GGP is at Sydney Airport this week, here to transport Race Horses back to Dubai. This is an annual visit for this beautiful Queen Of The Skies, and she will be departing Sydney on Thursday. A6-GGP previously operated with Great Wall Airlines and Singapore Cargo.
Sunday 9 Dec: A first time visitor at Sydney Airport today was Pacific Air Express Boeing B757-200 Freighter VH-PQA, arriving from Brisbane at 1510L and parking on Bay 93A (DHL). They were picking up empty containers from the Ex. Tasman Cargo B757 VH-TCA, which has now returned to Europe. Pacific Air Express are currently conducting proving flights to gain their AOC.
Tuesday 4 Dec: It was a perfect summer morning to photograph the departure of the inaugural Philippines Airbus A350-900 at Sydney Airport. RP-C3506 operated the inaugural PAL213 inbound service last night, arriving at 2208L, and departed this morning at 0609L. Philippines now joins China Airlines as the only Airbus A350 operators at Sydney Airport.
Wednseday 21 Nov: The President of the Republic of India, Mr Ram Nath Kovind, and his wife, Mrs Savita Kovind, arrived at Sydney Airport this morning, on Air India Boeing B747-400 VT-EVB. They are visiting Australia from the 21st to 23rd November 2018.
Sunday 11 Nov: Nice to have a pair of USAF KC-135R Stratotankers at Sydney airport this evening. LULU23 (62-3518) arrived a bit before sunset, and LULU24 (64-14837) arrived 40 minutes later. Both aircraft landed on Runway 34L and then taxied to Bays 90 and 92 respectively..
Sunday 4 Nov: It was hot out on the Runway at Sydney Airport this morning, and I'm not just talking about the temperature.The very rare Japan Air Self Defence Force B777-300ER 80-1111 flew in direct from Haneda in 8hr 57min, touching down on Runway 34L, then taxiing to DOM6. This is the first of two aircraft which will replace the existing B747s.
Friday 26 Oct: Emirates Boeing B777-300ER A6-ECQ had the "Blue Expo 2020" decals applied at the Emirates Aircraft Appearance Centre in Dubai, between 18/9/2018 and 25/9/2018. This design is the first in a series of three, that will be rolled out leading up to EXPO 2020. The three themes are opportunity, mobility and sustainability. This is the first design reflecting Mobility, and this is the first visit to Sydney by A6-ECQ, since the decals were applied.
Friday 12 Oct: Unfortunately, wet conditions greeted the German Air Force Airbus A340-300 16+02 at Sydney Airport this afternoon. Showers swept in just as 16+02 was on approach for Runway 16R, then cleared as the aircraft vacated the Runway, and followed Taxiway GOLF to DOM6 Bay 98. Sister aircraft 16+01 visited Sydney on the 4th November 2017.
Monday 17 Sep: The Guys & Gals in the ATC Tower at Sydney Airport arrived to a spectacular view this morning, with yesterday's star arrival parked next door on the KILO Apron. Edelweiss Airbus A340-300 HB-JMG is on a world tour, with the Pax enjoying a few beautiful tourist days in Sydney.