The world's first plastic-free flight took to the skies on 26 December 2018, operated by Hi Fly, a company that wet leases aircraft in Portugal and Malta. The flight took off from Lisbon, Portugal to Natal, Brazil on an Airbus A340 with more than 700 passengers taking part in the trial.
The Hi Fly plane had not a single-use plastic item on board. The airline replaced non-recyclable plastic items like cups, spoons, salt and pepper shakers, sick bags, packaging for bedding, dishes, individual butter pots, soft drink bottles and toothbrushes with compostable alternatives crafted from recycled material: bamboo cutlery, paper packaging and compostable containers.
Hi Fly Cabin Crew inaugurating the first singles use plastic free flight in the world
“The test flights will prevent around 350 kg of single-use, virtually indestructible plastics from poisoning our environment," Hi Fly president Paulo Mirpur said in his statement. Hi Fly believes this initiative has the potential to be a turning point for the airline industry’s plastic problem.
“Over 100,000 flights take off each day around the world and, last year, commercial aircraft carried nearly four billion passengers. This number is expected to double again in less than 20 years. So, the potential to make a difference here is clearly enormous.”
This is the first of three more test flights to follow, but the project doesn't stop there — the aim, according Paulo Mirpuri, is to phase out single-use plastic from all Hi Fly’s flights within twelve months.
Photo Credits: Hi Fly