Lufthansa's first Airbus A380 departed the ILA show yesterday evening on a hastily arranged visit to Brussels, at the insistence of the German carrier's publicity team.

To assist with pilot training, the airline has been conducting a series of trial flights around Germany, Austria and Switzerland since receiving its first A380 on 19 May.

But the carrier says that the publicity team "pushed" for a change in the schedule over the weekend to include the Belgian capital. "We needed to have the aircraft in Brussels," the airline says. "It has never been to the centre of Europe."

Brussels is also the base for Brussels Airlines, which Lufthansa Group is in the process of acquiring. The flight carried media representatives and Lufthansa management figures.

Lufthansa will fly the A380 on Beijing and Tokyo routes when it formally puts the type into service on 11 June.

Source: Flight Daily News