NewsRussian plane stranded in Munich faces hefty parking fee

Russian plane stranded in Munich faces hefty parking fee

The airplane has been stuck at the Munich airport for two years (illustrative photo)
The airplane has been stuck at the Munich airport for two years (illustrative photo)
Images source: © Wikimedia Commons | Fabrizio Berni

6:11 PM EST, November 25, 2023

A Russian aircraft has found itself grounded at the Munich airport for almost two years. The Airbus A320, belonging to the Russian airline Aeroflot, became stuck amidst heightened Russian aggression toward Ukraine. The situation has left many questioning the future of the plane, even as it incurs a rising parking bill for its lengthy stay.

The troublesome decoration at a German airport

The Airbus A320 initially journeyed to the Munich airport from St. Petersburg on February 27, 2022. However, due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine and the subsequent closure of European airspace to Russian airlines, the aircraft's departure was blocked.

The grounded plane unintentionally serves as an unusual sight at the Munich airport, having been so for two years now. For airport staff, the aircraft's presence has been a significant inconvenience. Whenever foreign delegations arrive, they must tow the unmistakably Russian plane out of sight.

The grounded plane isn't leaving soon

For every day of parking at the Munich airport, a fine is incurred, amounting to an "affordable" 350 euros per day. This has brought the total parking fee to over 270,000 euros to date.

Fortunately, there is a chance that the airport might soon be relieved of this issue. Although the aircraft is unlikely to fly again due to its technical state and lack of inspections, there has been a claim over the plane by the Irish-Chinese leasing company from which the Russians leased it. CMB Financial Leasing intends to retrieve the plane, permitting the removal of the Russian airline's logos under which it previously flew. This means the plane could indeed leave the premises of the airport, given the machinery's ownership is outside Russia.

For the aircraft to move, however, it must go through comprehensive technical servicing, scheduled for December. The plane's owners are optimistic that leasing it further will cover the costs for both the servicing and the Munich airport's parking fees.

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