Freight Aircraft Types

Different Types of All-Cargo Aircraft

Freight aircraft play an essential role in transporting goods and materials around the world. They can transport large loads of cargo, making them ideal for businesses that need to move large quantities of goods. All-cargo aircraft like this cargo plane can fly to remote locations, making them ideal for companies transporting goods to difficult-to-reach places.…

Freight aircraft play an essential role in transporting goods and materials around the world. They can transport large loads of cargo, making them ideal for businesses that need to move large quantities of goods. All-cargo aircraft like this cargo plane can fly to remote locations, making them ideal for companies transporting goods to difficult-to-reach places. This type of cargo plane and its characteristics will be defined further below.

Freight Methods

Cargo transportation is the process of shipping goods from one location to another. This can be done by land, air, or water. The most common form of cargo transportation is by truck. This is because it is the most affordable option and can be done relatively quickly. However, some items are too large or heavy to transport by truck. In these cases, air or water transport may be the only option. Cargo transportation by truck usually involves a driver picking up the goods at the point of origin and then delivering them to the destination. The driver will typically use a GPS to find the quickest and most efficient route.

You can read a comprehensive comparison between air and sea freight methods in the UAE here.

Sometimes, the driver may need to stop at a weigh station to ensure that the vehicle is not overloaded. Cargo transportation by air is often the fastest option, but it is also the most expensive. Ocean freight rates are typically slower than air freight rates, but it is often the most economical option. Water transport is generally done by big ships carrying large quantities of cargo. These ships typically journey between ports, picking up and dropping offload. Air cargo is usually transported by large all-cargo aircraft specifically designed for this purpose. The planes have large load holds that can accommodate large and heavy items.

Freight Aircraft Types

Based on their usage, there are four general types of cargo airplanes: all-cargo aircraft, passenger-onlycombi aircraft, and convertible aircraft. All-cargo aircraft are airplanes that are only used to transport cargo. In contrast, combi aircraft are airplanes that can transport both passengers and cargo. Convertible aircraft are airplanes that can convert from an all-cargo configuration to a combi configuration. In contrast, passenger-only aircraft are aircraft designed to transport passengers only, not cargo. Each type of freight airplane has unique capabilities and features that make it well-suited for transporting different kinds of freight.

All-Cargo Aircraft

All-cargo aircraft are a vital part of the modern transportation system, moving goods and materials around the world quickly and efficiently. But what exactly are all-cargo aircraft, and how do they work? All-cargo airplanes are just what they sound like – airplanes that are specifically designed to carry cargo and nothing else. Unlike passenger airplanes, which have to be able to accommodate people, all-cargo aircraft are designed with only one thing in mind: carrying as much cargo as possible. This means they’re usually much more extensive than passenger airplanes, with much more space for storage.

All-cargo aircraft typically have large cargo doors and high ceilings, which make it easy to load and unload cargo. They also have a large cargo hold, allowing them to carry a large shipment. All-cargo aircraft are typically used to transport heavy and oversized cargo, such as vehicles, machinery, and other large items.

All-cargo aircraft typically have two main compartments: the main deck, which is where most of the cargo is stored, and the lower deck, which is generally used for smaller items or for items that need to be accessed more quickly. The main deck is typically divided into sections, with each one being able to hold a specific type of cargo. For example, one unit might be for heavy items while another is for fragile items.

The way that all-cargo aircraft are loaded and unloaded also differs from passenger airplanes. While passenger airplanes typically have passengers boarding and disembarking through a series of doors, all-cargo aircraft are generally loaded and unloaded through large cargo doors at the front or rear of the plane. This allows for much faster and more efficient loading and unloading of cargo. All-cargo aircraft play a vital role in the global economy, transporting goods and materials quickly and efficiently worldwide. Without them, the world would be a very different place. There are many types of all-cargo aircraft. Here are some examples:

Boeing 747-400F

The Boeing 747-400F is a wide-body all-cargo aircraft produced by Boeing Commercial Airplanes. It was introduced in 1993 and was produced until 2002. The 747-400F is a freighter version of the 747-400 and can carry up to 124 tons of cargo. It has a range of 4,350 nautical miles and can operate at a cruising altitude of 35,000 feet.

Airbus A300-600F

Airbus A300-600F is a twin-engined all-cargo aircraft manufactured by Airbus. It is the Freighter (F) version of the A300-600. The A300-600F made its maiden flight on October 9, 2007, and was introduced by Air France on October 25, 2007. The A300-600F can carry up to 70 tons (154,000 lb) of cargo and has a maximum payload capacity of 41.4 tons (91,000 lb). It has a main deck cargo door and a side cargo door. It can be configured to carry both palletized and containerized cargo.

Antonov An-124

The Antonov An-124 is a Soviet-designed super heavy-lift cargo aircraft. It is the largest military transport aircraft in the world. The An-124 was designed to airlift huge and heavy outsize cargoes and transport them to military bases and civilian airports with limited ground infrastructure. It has a maximum payload capacity of 150 tonnes. The An-124 has been used in various military and civilian roles, including the transport of tanks, armored vehicles, and other heavy equipment; the airlift of humanitarian aid; and the transport of oversized cargo for the aerospace and construction industries.

Lockheed L-100 Hercules

The Lockheed L-100 Hercules is a four-engine turboprop military transport aircraft designed and built by Lockheed. The Hercules was designed to replace older piston-engined cargo planes such as the C-130 Hercules. The L-100 first flew in 1964 and was produced until 1992. A total of 219 L-100s were built.

McDonnell Douglas MD-11F

The McDonnell Douglas MD-11F is a wide-body, twin-engine cargo aircraft designed and manufactured by McDonnell Douglas. It is a derivative of the MD-11 and features several changes to improve its performance and economics. It first flew in 1995 and was introduced into service in 1996. A total of 60 aircraft were built, with the last delivered in 2001.

Ilyushin Il-76TD-90VD

The Ilyushin Il-76TD-90VD is a Soviet military transport aircraft. It is an upgraded version of the Il-76MD, with a new glass cockpit and more powerful engines. The aircraft can carry up to 60 tons of cargo, take off, and land on short airstrips. It has been used in various military and humanitarian operations, including evacuating civilians from conflict zones.

Boeing 747-8F

The Boeing 747-8F is a wide-body cargo aircraft that was introduced in 2011. It is the largest variant of the 747-8 and is the largest commercial freighter aircraft in the world. The 747-8F can carry up to 140 tons of cargo and has a range of over 8,000 miles.

Airbus A330-200F

The Airbus A330-200F is a twin-engine cargo aircraft that Airbus developed. It is based on the Airbus A330-200 passenger aircraft and was first delivered in 2011. The A330-200F can carry up to 70 tons of cargo and has a maximum range of 4,000 nautical miles.

Antonov An-225

The Antonov An-225 is a six-engined cargo aircraft designed in the 1980s by the Soviet Union. It is the world’s heaviest aircraft. The An-225’s first flight was on December 21, 1988. The plane has a maximum take-off weight of 640 tonnes. It is 84 meters long and has a wingspan of 88 meters. It can carry a payload of up to 250 tonnes. The An-225 has been used to transport oversized cargo, including space shuttle orbiters and Generator sets.


The Antonov An-124-100M-150 is a four-engined heavy transport aircraft designed in the 1980s by the Antonov Design Bureau in the Ukrainian SSR. It is based on the earlier An-124 Ruslan and is produced by Antonov Airlines. The An-124-100M-150 is an updated version of the An-124-100, with increased payload and range. It made its maiden flight in December 2014.

Boeing 747-400ERF

The Boeing 747-400ERF is a wide-body commercial airliner that Boeing, an American aerospace company, produced. It was the first derivative of the 747-400. It was launched in October 1995 with an order for ten aircraft from Cathay Pacific. The 747-400ERF is a freighter version of the 747-400 and can carry up to 123 metric tons (136 short tons) of cargo.


The 747-400BCF is a modified version of the 747-400 that has been converted into a freighter. The main difference between the two aircraft is that the 747-400BCF has been fitted with a large cargo door on the left side of the fuselage. Its main deck has been strengthened to accommodate heavy loads. The 747-400BCF can carry up to 150 tons of cargo and has a range of over 8,000 miles.

There is a wide variety of all-cargo aircraft to choose from, so finding the right one for your needs is crucial. There are many factors to consider, such as payload, range, and operating costs. With so many options available, doing your research beforehand is essential.


We hope this blog post has helped you understand the different types of freight aircraft available for use in the air cargo industry. If you have any questions about the different kinds of freight aircraft, please feel free to ask them in the comments, and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

At DFreight, we are the leading digital freight forwarder. We provide a cutting-edge online platform that helps businesses to streamline their air cargo operations. We offer a wide range of services to simplify air cargo shipping. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help your business to save time and money.


What are the dimensions of a cargo airplane?

Cargo airplanes vary in size, but the average length is around 150 feet, and the average wingspan is around 160 feet.

How much does a cargo airplane weigh?

The average weight of a cargo airplane is around 300,000 pounds.

What is the range of a cargo airplane?

The average range of a cargo airplane is around 4,000 miles.

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