Aircraft Updates

On this page you can find all the latest news, direct from the Air Operations Department each Thursday, reflecting the progress of potential aircraft participation of this year's Air Tattoo.

The 'Traffic Light' system highlights the current status of the communications between the Air Tattoo and various international air arms invited to the event.  An amber light will be displayed alongside the country when we enter discussions about their potential participation.  When we have received written confirmation of aircraft attendance, a green light will be displayed.  Countries that have declined our invitation are listed with a red light.

To see our full list of display aircraft, click the link here to head over to our confirmed aircraft page.

Latest Update

This week we announce our first formation display team for the RIAT 2024 flying display. In addition to the previously announced Hornet, the Finnish Air Force will now also be sending us their Midnight Hawks Display Team! We haven't seen the team at RIAT since 2017, so we're pleased to welcome them back to RAF Fairford, and very relevant this year as it's the 50th anniversary of the first flight of the British Aerospace Hawk aircraft.

Two further additions to our static display, starting with a RIAT debut for a Turbo Firecat. Recently retired from Sécurité Civile service in France, this water bomber is now operated in civilian hands and should be a highlight of RIAT 2024 for many aviation enthusiasts. Secondly, Gazelle Squadron will be bringing their ex-QinetiQ Gazelle for static display, as part of our Pushing the Boundaries in Air and Space theme.

Last week at the European Airshow Council Convention our team had a number of positive discussions with a number of European militaries about their intended support to RIAT 2024. It was pleasing to hear from colleagues from supporting Air Forces including the Belgian, Danish, Dutch, French, Jordanian, Slovenian and Swedish that they intend to participate. We hope to receive their formal confirmations in the coming weeks.

At the same time, we are starting to hear back from other Air Arms who are sadly unable to send their aircraft to RIAT 2024 due to their operational commitments. These can be viewed at the bottom of the invited nations list.

Invited Nations

Invited nations

Air arm Current status
Royal Canadian Air Force Confirmed
Czech Republic Air Force Confirmed
Finnish Air Force Confirmed
Spanish Air Force Confirmed
Spanish Navy Confirmed
Austrian Air Force Ongoing
Belgian Air Component Ongoing
Royal Danish Air Force Ongoing
French Air and Space Force Ongoing
German Army Ongoing
Indian Navy Ongoing
Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Ongoing
Royal Jordanian Air Force Ongoing
North Atlantic Treaty Organisation Ongoing
Royal Netherlands Air Force Ongoing
Royal Norwegian Air Force Ongoing
Polish Land Forces Ongoing
Polish Air Force Ongoing
Qatar Emiri Air Force Ongoing
Royal Saudi Air Force Ongoing
Serbian Air Force & Air Defence Ongoing
Slovakian Air Force Ongoing
Slovenian Army Aviation Command Ongoing
Swedish Air Force Ongoing
Swiss Air Force Ongoing
United States Air Force (Reserves) Ongoing
United States Air Force Air Combat Command Ongoing
United States Air Force in Europe and Africa Ongoing
Zambian Air Force Ongoing
Albanian Air Force Invited
Algerian Air Force Invited
Royal Australian Air Force Invited
Azerbaijani Air and Air Defence Force Invited
Royal Bahrain Air Force Invited
Bangladesh Air Force Invited
Armed Forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina Invited
Botswana Defence Force Invited
Brazilian Air Force Invited
Royal Brunei Air Force Invited
Bulgarian Air Force Invited
Chilean Air Force Invited
Colombian Aerospace Force Invited
Croatian Air Force Invited
Cyprus Air Command Invited
Ecuadorian Air Force Invited
Estonian Air Force Invited
Finnish Army Invited
French Army Invited
French Navy Invited
German Air Force Invited
Ghana Air Force Invited
Hellenic Navy Invited
Hellenic Army Invited
Hellenic Air Force Invited
Hungarian Air Force Invited
Icelandic Directorate of Security & Defence Invited
Indian Air Force Invited
Indonesian Air Force Invited
Iraqi Air Force Invited
Irish Air Corps Invited
Israeli Air Force Invited
Italian Air Force Invited
Italian Coastguard Invited
Japan Air Self-Defense Force Invited
Air Force of the Republic of Kazakhstan Invited
Kenyan Air Force Invited
Republic of Korea Air Force Invited
Republic of Korea Navy Invited
Kuwait Air Force Invited
Latvian National Air Force Invited
Lebanese Air Force Invited
Lithuanian Air Force Invited
Luxembourg Armed Forces Invited
Ministry of Defence North Macedonia Invited
Royal Malaysian Air Force Invited
Armed Forces of Malta Invited
Mexican Air Force Invited
Montenegrin Air Force Invited
Royal Moroccan Air Force Invited
Royal New Zealand Air Force Invited
Nigerian Air Force Invited
Pakistan Air Force Invited
Pakistan Navy Invited
Peruvian Air Force Invited
Philippine Air Force Invited
Polish Navy Invited
Portuguese Air Force Invited
Romanian Air Force Invited
Republic of Singapore Air Force Invited
South African Air Force Invited
Spanish Army Invited
Sri Lanka Air Force Invited
Tanzania Air Force Command Invited
Royal Thai Air Force Invited
Tunisian Air Force Invited
Turkish Air Force Invited
Turkish Naval Forces Invited
Turkish Land Forces Invited
Turkmenistan Defence Force Invited
United Arab Emirates Air Force and Air Defence Force Invited
Armed Forces of Ukraine Invited
United States Air Force Air Education and Training Command Invited
United States Air Force Air Mobility Command Invited
United States Air Force Global Strike Command Invited
United States Air Force Materiel Command Invited
United States Air Force Pacific Air Forces Invited
United States Air Force Special Operations Command Invited
United States Air National Guard Invited
United States Army Invited
United States Navy Invited
United States Coast Guard Invited
United States Marine Corps Invited
Uruguayan Air Force Invited
Armed Forces of the Republic of Uzbekistan Invited
Vietnamese Air Defence-Air Force Invited

Not participating

Air arms
Egyptian Air Force,German Navy,Italian Army,Italian Navy,Royal Air Force of Oman

Previous Updates

29/02/23

A real highlight for aviation enthusiasts to kick-off this week's update, with a pair of SF-5M Freedom Fighters from the Spanish Air Force! These jets are used during the training of new fast jet pilots in Spain, from their home base at Badajoz Air Base. We're delighted to have them return to RIAT as part of our NATO 75th Anniversary theme.

Another fast jet for the flying display this week, in the shape of the ever popular Czech Gripen. In addition, they'll also be bringing one of their L-159 ALCAs which will form part of the NATO 75th Anniversary static display.

Final confirmations for this week come from Bristow Helicopters with their Coastguard helicopters. We've seen the AW189 and S-92 at RIAT previously, accompnaied by a ground display from HM Coastguard, which is always popular with visitors. In addition, this year they'll also be bringing one of their brand new AW139 helicopters to join the line-up too.

This week, we have a small team attending the European Airshow Council Convention in Brussels. This three day event is a vital date in our annual calendar for us to gather with airshow colleagues from across Europe, share best practice and discuss potential aircraft participation with the military representatives in attendance. We hope to have some more information to share with you, about the discussions our team have at EAC, in next week's update.

15/02/23

This week we add four civilian operated aircraft to our RIAT 2024 static aircraft displays.

Firstly, another aircraft used for scientific research and flight testing, as part of our 'Pushing the Boundaries in Air and Space' theme, in the shape of Cranfield University's SAAB 340 aircraft, which is used as the National Flying Laboratory Centre. This aircraft is returning to RAF Fairford after it's debut last year and will be on static display on all three days of this year's show. We hope to park a number of the aircraft coming to the show as part of this special theme together, near to the centre of the showground.

Another returning aircraft comes from Hawker Hunter Aviation. With the Hawker Hunter operated by many North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) Air Arms during the alliance's early years, as we celebrate the NATO 75th Anniversary at RIAT 2024 we're pleased to have an example of this classic jet in attendance. Our aspiration is that following appearances of different machines from their fleet in recent years, we should see ZZ191 this year in it's eye-catching splinter camouflage colour scheme, although that is subject to change over the coming months.

In addition, we will also welcome a Leonardo AW169 from Uni Fly for the first time, exhibiting their new winch-equipped helicopter, and the Slingsby Nipper which nearly made it to the show last year, should be with us on static display to take the award for smallest aircraft at the show!

This week, work has continued with a variety of nations who hope to send their aircraft to RIAT 2024. For most Air Forces, whilst initial planning has begun, it is not until the Spring when we can expect to receive formal confirmation of their participation, and add the aircraft to our participation list. Of particular interest this week is the intent from Zambia to send an aircraft, after their last minute cancellation in 2023.

08/02/23

Welcome to our first aircraft update of 2024! Following on from our special unveiling in December, where we revealed a Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18 Demo, we are now naming participating aircraft every week ahead of this year’s Royal International Air Tattoo.As you can see from the traffic light system below, we have been busy working with a variety of nations and civil aircraft operators to ensure a fantastic assortment of aircraft for you to enjoy this summer.

In this week’s announcement, we’re pleased the Spanish Navy will be returning to RIAT with their iconic Harrier The EAV-8B, known as 'Matador' in Spanish service, set to perform a solo flying display.

Meanwhile on the static display, as part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO)’s 75th anniversary celebration, we will have a Finnish Air Force Hornet, which we hope to park alongside aircraft from fellow NATO nations.

Elsewhere, under our ‘Pushing the Boundaries in Air and Space’ theme, a British Antarctic Survey Twin Otter, in a bright orange colour scheme, will also be visiting. This aircraft operates in incredible conditions as it conducts scientific work, which makes it an aircraft not to be missed when you’re visiting RAF Fairford in July.

07/12/23

We're pleased to make an early announcement for RIAT 2024, with exciting news from Canada! RIAT 2024 will host the European celebration of the Royal Canadian Air Force's Centennial and as part of this we're thrilled to be welcoming their CF-188 Hornet to performing in the flying display at the Air Tattoo. A display not seen in the UK since 2018, the Hornet will be specially painted in a livery to celebrate their 100th anniversary. More details can be found in on News Page & 2024 Themes page.

We hope to begin regular 'Take Off Thursday' updates in February, as other Air Arms confirm their attendance at RIAT 2024. Stay tuned!