Airbus A330 Spotting Guide


The Airbus A330 is a derivative of Airbus's first airliner, the Airbus A300 and dates back to the mid-1970s. The A330 was developed in parallel with the four-engine Airbus A340, and the two airliners share a number of common airframe, design, and operational components. 

The A330-300, the first variant, first flew in November of 1992 and entered passenger service with Air Inter in January of 1994. Airbus later developed the shorter A330-200 variant in 1998.

Since its launch, the A330 has allowed Airbus to expand market share in wide-body airliners. Competing twinjets include the Boeing 767 and Boeing 777, as well as the newer Boeing 787.

A total of 1,294 A330s have been built by Airbus as of August of 2016.

Airbus A330 Spotting Tips

Airbus A330 spotter's guide: notched windshield window, two engines (one under each wing), one passenger deck the length of the fuselage, main landing gear fall to the rear, a "bulged' area between the wings, and a straight fuselage under the tail structure.
Airbus A330 spotter's guide: notched windshield window, two engines (one under each wing), one passenger deck the length of the fuselage, main landing gear fall to the rear, a "bulged' area between the wings, and a straight fuselage under the tail structure.

Airbus A330-200F spotter's guide: the freighter version of the A330 features a large nose undercarriage "blister" to facilitate a level deck during cargo loading and unloading.
Airbus A330-200F spotter's guide: the freighter version of the A330 features a large nose undercarriage "blister" to facilitate a level deck during cargo loading and unloading

The chart below shows how similar the Airbus A300 (top) and the A330 (bottom) are in overall appearance. One significant difference is between the wings and under the fuselage. The A300 is smooth under the fuselage, whereas the A330 features a bulge in that area.
The chart below shows how similar the Airbus A300 and the A330 are in overall appearance. One significant difference is between the wings and under the fuselage. The A300 is smooth under the fuselage, whereas the A330 features a bulge in that area.

Airbus A330 (bottom) and Boeing 767 (top) main landing gear differences
Boeing 767 and Airbus A330 spotting guide

 

Airbus A330 Photographs

Avianca Airbus A330-200
Avianca Airbus A330-200 on a landing approach

Emirates Airbus A330-200
Emirates Airbus A330-200


US Airways Airbus A330-200
US Airways Airbus A330-200 in a landing approach

Air Canada Airbus A330-300
Air Canada Airbus A330-300

Northwest Airbus A330-300
Northwest Airbus A330-300

Air Canada Alliance Airbus A330-343
Air Canada Alliance Airbus A330-343

Delta Air Lines Airbus A330
Delta Air Lines Airbus A330