Airship "Yokoso! Japan" will return to Germany

Weather permitting, during week 36 the airship
Weather permitting, during week 36 the airship "Yokoso! Japan" will return to Germany to await shipping to Japan.

2 September 2004

The airship "Yokoso! Japan" will not attempt to fly over Siberia to Japan. Instead, "Yokoso! Japan" will fly via Stockholm and Copenhagen back to Friedrichshafen, the home of the Zeppelin corporation in southern Germany.

Departure from Helsinki, where the airship has been since 18 July, is already being prepared. The mooring mast has been ferried over to Stockholm and set up at Tullinge airfield. "Yokoso! Japan" can now leave its moorings at Malmi Airport when the weather clears. The day of departure will not be before Saturday 4 September.

The original plan was to continue the flight from Helsinki to St. Petersburg and Moscow and then via Kazan, Ufa, Chelyabinsk, Omsk, Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk, Irkutsk, Chita, Habarovsk and Juzhno-Sakhalinsk to Sapporo and Tokyo. The 10.000 km journey was estimated to take about a month, and 26 stopover locations were prepared in Russia. The 235-meter-long Graf Zeppelin used more or less the same route on its circumnavigation of the globe in 1929.

However, acquiring permissions from Russian authorities took too long. With autumn advancing, the airship would have faced no-flying weather in Siberia, and in the worst case winter could have caught it, which it wouldn't have been able to cope with.

The Friends of Malmi Airport Society wishes all the best and a good journey to "Yokoso! Japan" and its crew! Thank you for visiting us!

More information:
Nippon Airship Corporation
NYK Line news release