Two Antonov AN-124-100 “Ruslan” aircraft flew staging equipment for the singer’s Reputation Stadium Tour between airports in Australia, New Zealand, and Japan

London, UK – Antonov Airlines transported stage and concert equipment for US pop-star Taylor Swift, from Brisbane, Australia to Auckland, New Zealand, and then on to Narita airport in Tokyo, Japan.

Auckland Airport - photo by Richard Maher
Auckland Airport - photo by Richard Maher

The Ukrainian heavy lift carrier used two Antonov AN-124-100 “Ruslan” to ferry the singer’s light-show system and equipment earlier this month for the final leg of her global tour, “Reputation Stadium Tour”.

“After evaluating all of the aircraft and air carriers capable of fulfilling the operational requirements of our client’s schedule, which required the uplift of 635 tons (576 metric tonnes) within 36 hours from Brisbane to Auckland, it became clear that the Antonov Airlines operated AN-124 aircraft was the ideal aircraft for the mission,” said David C Bernstein CEO of Rock-it Cargo, the worldwide freight forwarder for the 2018 Taylor Swift Tour.

“The roll-on, roll-off capability of the AN-124 combined with the impeccable planning and coordination provided by Graham Witton and the entire Antonov Airlines team, resulted in an early delivery of all the gear to the Auckland concert venue.”

Graham Witton, Managing Director of Antonov Airlines in UK said: “Antonov AN-124-100 was the obvious choice because the equipment that was being transported needed the full floor space that the aircraft can provide.

“We met the challenge of an intense back-to-back concert schedule, and we sent out two crews to Australia to ensure that both aircraft could operate three rotations without any break for 24 hours.”

Antonov Airlines successfully turned around the same shipment earlier this year when Taylor Swift came to Wembley, UK, in June, as part of the same tour.

In total, the two Antonov AN-124-100 aircraft, which have a payload capacity of up to 120 tonnes, flew nine flights with six taking off from Brisbane airport and three leaving Auckland Airport for Tokyo.

Antonov Airlines operates a fleet of seven AN-124-100 ‘Ruslan’ aircraft with up to 150-tonnes payload, its 60-tonne payload AN-22, the world’s largest turboprop-powered aircraft, and its unique 250-tonne payload AN-225 ‘Mriya’, the largest aircraft in the world, as well as smaller AN-74 and AN-26 aircraft.