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Lufthansa Cargo

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Lufthansa Cargo
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded1977 (as German Cargo)
1993 (current entity)
HubsFrankfurt Airport, Tolmachevo Airport, Hyderabad Airport
Fleet size18
Parent companyLufthansa Group
HeadquartersFrankfurt, Germany
Key peoplePeter Gerber, Chairman

Lufthansa Cargo AG is a German cargo airline and a wholly owned subsidiary of Lufthansa. It operates worldwide air freight and logistics services and is headquartered at Frankfurt Airport, the main hub of Lufthansa.[1][2] Besides operating dedicated cargo planes, the company also has access to cargo capacities of 350 passenger aircraft of the Lufthansa Group.


Lufthansa operated a cargo subsidiary, called German Cargo, between 1977 and 1993 (earlier still, cargo operations were executed in-house, under the Lufthansa Cargo name), when in an effort to restructure the company the cargo division was re-integrated into its parent, and split up into two parts (one for scheduled operations using Lufthansa-owned aircraft, and one for freight and logistics services using chartered or leased aircraft).

Lufthansa Cargo was created as a limited stock company on 30 November 2004, along with Lufthansa Cargo Charter. Lufthansa Cargo uses LH (the same IATA code as Lufthansa), as well as GEC (the former ICAO code of German Cargo) as airline codes. Lufthansa is unique compared to its major European competitors like British Airways and Air France in that the cargo business is organized in an entirely different airline entity. For some years, Lufthansa Cargo (including the freight transported in the cargo holds of mainline Lufthansa passenger aircraft) was the leading cargo airline in terms of international freight tonne-kilometres carried,[citation needed] but has since been surpassed by Cathay Pacific and Korean Air Cargo.

Operations and subsidiaries

As of 2011, all Lufthansa Cargo aircraft are based at Frankfurt Airport, the seventh busiest freight hub in the world, where the airline enjoys a strong co-operation with Fraport, the operator of the airport. Cargo facilities at the airport are divided into two places (Cargo City North and South), of which the first one is nearly exclusively used by Lufthansa Cargo.

In earlier years,[when?] Lufthansa Cargo had a secondary base at Leipzig/Halle Airport, the European hub for DHL Express, from where it operated flights on behalf of DHL. Activities at this airport gradually came to an end following the formation of AeroLogic as a joint venture between Lufthansa and DHL, which henceforth caters for the DHL flights, allowing Lufthansa Cargo to concentrate on other services.[3]

In 2000, Lufthansa Cargo was a founding member of the WOW Alliance, a global cargo airline alliance, but left in 2007 as it did not see any benefits for the future.

Lufthansa Cargo used to operate a hub for intra-Asian flights at Astana International Airport in Kazakhstan, but was forced to relocate it to Yemelyanovo Airport in Russia in 2007, because otherwise the airline would have been banned from entering Russian airspace, in what was described as an act of economic blackmail by the Russian authorities.[4][5]

In 2008, Jade Cargo International was founded as a joint venture between Shenzhen Airlines, Lufthansa Cargo, and the German Investment Corporation, a German governmental entity. Jade ended operations in 2011.

In May 2011, Lufthansa Cargo opened another hub at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad, to transport temperature-sensitive goods, especially pharmaceuticals, between South East Asia and Europe (and onwards to the United States).[6]


As of October 2013, Lufthansa Cargo serves 57 cities worldwide with its cargo aircraft.[7]


Current fleet

As of August 2019 the Lufthansa Cargo fleet consists of the following aircraft:[8]

Lufthansa Cargo fleet
Aircraft In service Orders Notes
McDonnell Douglas MD-11F 9 Includes the last MD-11F ever built, D-ALCN[9]
To be phased out by the end of 2020[10]
Boeing 777F 7 2[11]
Total 16 2

With the delivery of the first Boeing 777F, Lufthansa Cargo started to name their aircraft in a scheme referring to typical greetings of the countries they serve. The first 777F was named Good day, USA, while an MD-11F was named Buenos días México for example.[9]

Fleet development

The initial fleet of Lufthansa Cargo had previously belonged to German Cargo, and was expanded by cargo-converted former Lufthansa mainline Boeing 747-200s. From 1998, the airline began to gradually phase out all other aircraft types in favour of a fleet entirely consisting of the McDonnell Douglas MD-11, and its successor, the Boeing 777 freighter. In March 2011, the order of five Boeing 777F was announced, the same aircraft type which had earlier been chosen for AeroLogic.[12] Almost the entire Lufthansa Cargo fleet today is composed of purpose-built freighter aircraft.

Over the years, the following aircraft types were operated:[13]

Lufthansa Cargo fleet development
Aircraft Introduced Retired
Boeing 737-300F 1994 1997
Boeing 747-200F 1994 2005
Boeing 777F 2013
Douglas DC-8-73F 1994 1997
McDonnell Douglas MD-11F 1998

Accidents and incidents


  1. ^ "Lufthansa Cargo appoints new regional managers Archived 2016-08-12 at the Wayback Machine." Lufthansa Cargo. 6 February 2008. Retrieved on 18 September 2009.
  2. ^ "Imprint Archived 2011-07-28 at the Wayback Machine." Lufthansa Cargo. Retrieved on 28 May 2011. "Lufthansa Cargo AG Flughafenbereich West Tor 25, Gebäude 451 D-60546 Frankfurt am Main"
  3. ^ AeroLogic outlines launch and expansion plans Flight Global, 28 January 2008
  4. ^ Russia 'Blackmails' Lufthansa over Cargo Hubs Spiegel Online International 11/02/2007
  5. ^ "German flights row highlights EU-Russia trade tensions". Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  6. ^ "Lufthansa Cargo eröffnet Pharma-Drehkreuz Hyderabad". airliners.de. Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  7. ^ 27 September 2013. "Lufthansa Cargo focuses on Latin America" (Press release). lufthansa-cargo.com. Archived from the original on 15 November 2013. Retrieved 14 November 2013.
  8. ^ "Our fleet". Lufthansa Cargo. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
  9. ^ a b "Lufthansa Cargo". Lufthansa Taufnamen. Retrieved 9 November 2019.
  10. ^ Van Donselaar, Tim. "Lufthansa Cargo to Phase Out McDonnell Douglas MD-11". Aeronautics. Retrieved 9 November 2019.
  11. ^ "Lufthansa Cargo accelerates fleet modernization". Newsroom - Lufthansa Cargo. Retrieved 9 November 2019.
  12. ^ COMKOM° GmbH, Germany. "Lufthansa invests in passenger and freighter fleet". Archived from the original on 15 March 2012. Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  13. ^ "Lufthansa Cargo Fleet Details and History". Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  14. ^ Harro Ranter (7 November 2004). "ASN Aircraft accident Boeing 747-230F (SCD) TF-ARR Sharjah Airport (SHJ)". Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  15. ^ "UPDATE 2-Lufthansa cargo plane crashes at Saudi airport". Reuters. 27 July 2010. Retrieved 2010-07-27.
  16. ^ "BBC News - Lufthansa cargo plane crashes at Riyadh airport". Bbc.co.uk. 2010-03-27. Retrieved 2010-07-27.
  17. ^ Harro Ranter (27 July 2010). "ASN Aircraft accident McDonnell Douglas MD-11F D-ALCQ Riyadh-King Khalid International Airport (RUH)". Retrieved 10 July 2015.

External links

Media related to Lufthansa Cargo at Wikimedia Commons

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