World’s first single-use plastic-free flights

Posted on 21 February 2019

An airplane with no single-use plastics onboard took to the skies in December for the first time, flying from Lisbon to the northeastern Brazil city of Nata.

Hi Fly, a company which leases aircraft in Portugal and Malta, has since operated a number of flights where it has replaced plastic containers and cutlery with bamboo and other bio-degradable alternatives, and the organisation aims to implement a plastic-free policy on all of its flights by the end of 2019.

Hi Fly aims to replace all single-use plastics on its flights by the end of 2019. Image credit: Hi Fly

‘Among the scores of single-use plastic items that have been replaced are cups, spoons, salt and pepper shakers, packaging for bedding, dishes, individual butter pots, soft drink bottles, and toothbrushes,’ Hi Fly stated.

The four 100% single-use-plastic-free test flights were followed by 12 reduced plastic flights between Lisbon and Oporto to Fortaleza, Recife, Maceió and Salvador, saving a total of 1,500kg of plastic.

‘We know from the feedback we have received from client airlines and passengers, that it’s the right thing for the airline to be doing. These test flights will prevent around 350kg of single-use, virtually indestructible plastics from poisoning our environment,’ said Hi Fly president Paulo Mirpuri.


According to Canadian news agency CTV, the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair (which transports the most European passengers each year) has also stated that it will eliminate non-recyclable plastics on its flights by 2023.

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