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ADB 2019: Two New State of the Art Airbus A350 XWB to be Added to Fiji Airways Growing Fleet

Fiji Airways Group may very well have become the airline with the newest fleet of air­planes. Yesterday, Attorney-General and Minister Responsible for Civil Aviation, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum announced the decision by
03 May 2019 17:17
ADB 2019: Two New State of the Art Airbus A350 XWB to be Added to Fiji Airways Growing Fleet
From left: Karolina Kuruvoli of Fiji Airways, Ewen McDonald of Rolls-Royce, Hannish Murchison of Dubai Aerospace Enterprise, Attorney-General and Minister Responsible for Civil Aviation Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, Fiji Airways Board Chairman Rajesh Punja, Fiji Airways Managing Director and chief executive officer Andre Viljoen and Paul Tusk of Airbus stand in front of the Latest Generation A350-900s banner on May 2, 2019. Photo: Ilaijia Ravuwai

Fiji Airways Group may very well have become the airline with the newest fleet of air­planes.

Yesterday, Attorney-General and Minister Responsible for Civil Aviation, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum announced the decision by the Group’s board to lease two Airbuses – the A350-XWB.

And, despite the long waiting list for the A350s, the first of the two planes will arrive into Fiji in No­vember with the second one flying in the following month, December.

This brings the fleet of the Group to 19 airplanes.

This announcement also falls in line with one of the 52nd Annual Meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Board of Governors key priority area that is Sustainable tourism development.

Amongst the VIP guests who were in attendance at the announcement was the Samoan Minister for Fi­nance and ADB Governor Sili Epa Tuioti.

While making the announcement, Mr Sayed-Khaiyum acknowledged the robust process the Group and its managing director and chief execu­tive officer Andre Viljoen followed.

An artist’s impression of the Fiji Airways Airbus A350 XWB.  Photo: Fiji Airways

An artist’s impression of the Fiji Airways Airbus A350 XWB. Photo: Fiji Airways

The two new A350 XWB aircraft will boost Fiji Airways’ existing widebody fleet of six Airbus A330s, with delivery set for November and December this year.

Mr Viljoen, said they are extreme­ly pleased with this selection and proud of the confirmed arrange­ments with Dubai Aerospace En­terprise (DAE) Capital as the lessor, and Rolls-Royce as the engine sup­plier.

“Our teams are currently cus­tomising the aircraft to our speci­fications, including our world re­nowned livery and designs which proudly represent the people of Fiji.

“Ultimately, a luxury, world-class destination, like Fiji, deserves a luxury, world-class travel experi­ence and that’s exactly what these aircraft will deliver. For our guests, the holiday starts the moment they board the aircraft.

“Once the aircraft enter commer­cial service later this year, our cus­tomers will enjoy a truly world class onboard experience, supported by the authentic Fijian hospitality of our crews,” Mr Viljoen said.

Christian Scherer, Airbus Chief Commercial Officer said: “We are truly proud to see Fiji Airways’ eye-catching livery on our A350 XWB which will make it the launch car­rier from the South Pacific region.

“We also congratulate DAE Capi­tal on becoming the newest Airbus customer to recognise the A350 – the only new high capacity interconti­nental aircraft in the world – hardly surprising as its fuel efficiency, sus­tainability and passenger comfort are simply unmatched.”

There are 257 Airbus A350s in the skies around the world today, flown by 24 operators.

These include Fiji Airways’ part­ner oneworld airlines: Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Malaysia Airlines and Qatar Airways. Other A350 operators include Hong Kong Airlines, Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines.

The order book for this aircraft type stands at 890 orders from 50 customers. The new additions to the airline’s widebody fleet will be used for flights between Nadi and Los Angeles and Nadi and Sydney, with exact schedules to be con­firmed closer to launch.

The announcement comes as Fiji Airways continues to put into prac­tice its unrelenting commitment to passenger satisfaction and sustain­ability.

Features highlighted by Mr Viljoen:

  • Combining the latest aero­dynamics, new Rolls-Royce Trent XWB generation en­gines and use of lightweight materials, the A350 XWB brings a 25 per cent advantage in fuel burn, operating costs and carbon dioxide emissions compared to previous gen­eration similar-sized aircraft, meaning a significant reduc­tion to the airline’s carbon footprint and fuel cost.
  • The Airbus A350 will feature 33 B/E Aerospace Super Dia­mond, fully lie-flat Business Class beds, with each offer­ing direct aisle access. While Economy Class will feature 301 Recaro CL3710 seats, which are ranked among the most comfortable long-haul economy class seats on the market.
  • The A350 XWB’s Airspace by Airbus cabin is the quietest of any twin-aisle aircraft and offers passengers and crews the most modern in-flight products for the most com­fortable flying experience.
  • Not only will the aircraft pro­vide the ultimate in luxury air travel to Fiji, it’s also per­fect for passengers taking long-haul connecting flights to other destinations.
  • Boasting the latest generation AVANT inflight entertain­ment system from THALES and Wi-Fi connectivity, guests will be able to enjoy movies, tv and music on-demand, all whilst remaining connected in the air.

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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