Sustainability ‘deciding factor’ in Virgin Atlantic aircraft order

Sustainability ‘deciding factor’ in Virgin Atlantic aircraft order

Sustainability was the critical factor in Virgin Atlantic choosing its new fleet of aircraft.

Chief executive Craig Kreeger told Travel Weekly that, when sourcing the new additions to its fleet, the decision was a toss-up between Boeing 777s and Airbus 350-1000s.

When weighing up the cost, it was found that the difference was negligible when you counted the up-front cost savings of the Boeing 777s and the fuel savings of the Airbus 350-1000.

So the decision came down to which was better for the planet, and the 12 new Airbus aircraft were ordered.

“The whole industry is going to gradually to use more efficient aircraft,” Kreeger told Travel Weekly.

When asked if the decision was an inflection point for the airline industry, which is often criticised for its emissions, he said: “It was a good moment for us. It was one of those board room moments where everyone got on board with the idea.

“On the one hand you had a smaller risk in terms of capital [through the Boeing 777] and on the other you had better savings on fuel [on the Airbus], so the deciding factor was the environment.

“We are committed to flying a younger and more fuel-efficient fleet.”

In its end of 2016 results, Virgin Atlantic revealed it has reduced its CO2 emissions by 8%.

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