It seems a small group of pilots were feeling extra festive, and tried to spread seasonal cheer to the rest of the world by way of airplane. While completing a flight path over Germany, a Hamburg-based pilot test team decided to get creative: The airplane drew a Christmas tree in the sky during a test flight, and it's an unparalleled display of holiday spirit.
The plane set off from Hamburg's Finkenwerder airport at 12.47pm local time and is estimated to arrived back into the same airport at 4.35pm, according to Flightradar. However, instead of simply doing a few laps, the pilot took the decision to use the flight path to introduce a little more festive cheer. The tree even features baubles by means of regular loops in the flying pattern in between each branch.
The plane cruised at an average 41,000ft while completing the masterpiece, which went south as far as Stuttgart for the tree's trunk before turning northwards towards Hamburg again.
A spokesperson for Airbus explained it was a normal internal test flight before the delivery of a new aircraft, adding: “There are hundreds of these flights every year. “The routing of these flights is flexible, they take-off and land at the Airbus Airport in Hamburg-Finkenwerder,” they told The Telegraph.
“Thanks to the co-operation of the air traffic controllers (Eurocontrol and DFS), it was possible to fly that Christmas tree flight path. It was the idea of test pilots and engineers - an Airbus greeting to all aviation fans during this Christmas period.”
They joked the flight, in which they tested systems like in-flight entertainment, was an “early Season’s Greetings” from one of the flight test teams in Hamburg.
Flightradar24 confirmed: “This is a test flight that would be conducted regardless of the particular flight path.”