AirAsia’s long haul affiliate, AirAsia X, has placed an order with Airbus for an additional 34 A330neo widebody aircraft.
The order, which takes the total on order by the leading Asia airline to 100, was announced at the Farnborough Air Show this week.
All the A330neo aircraft ordered by AirAsia X are the larger A330-900 model.
These next-generation aircraft enable non-stop services to Europe, including from Kuala Lumpur to London.
The A330neo will allow AirAsia X to expand its long-haul model due to lower operating costs, and allow the airline to offer customers competitive fares.
AirAsia X will be the first airline in Asia to operate the A330neo, with deliveries of aircraft on order with Airbus scheduled to start in the fourth quarter of 2019. The A330neo will be operated by AirAsia X out of its bases in Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia.
AirAsia co-founder and AirAsia X Group chief executive Datuk Kamarudin Meranun said: “Long haul low-cost is something we strongly believe in, and this order shows our confidence in the AirAsia X model.
“We lobbied hard for the A330neo after seeing the success of the A320neo, and working closely with Airbus, we have arrived at an aircraft that we are confident will allow us to expand our low fares offering beyond Asia Pacific to the rest of the world.”
AirAsia co-founder and AirAsia X co-group chief executive Tan Sri Tony Fernandes added: “Our decision not only to reconfirm our existing order for 66 A330neo, but to add 34 more, follows what is probably one of the most thorough aircraft evaluations the industry has ever seen.
“We have looked at every aspect of the A330neo from technical performance and reliability to passenger comfort and it is clearly the right aircraft for us to expand efficiently our fast-growing long haul network.
“I would like to personally thank Eric Schulz, who has been put through his paces with AirAsia, as well as Jerome and Alain. We are a tough customer but we get behind a product we know is right.”
Eric Schulz, Airbus chief commercial officer, added: “We are extremely pleased to announce this important agreement with AirAsia X.
“This is the strongest possible endorsement for the unbeatable operating economics, performance and cost-effectiveness that the A330neo brings to the market in its size category.
“We look forward to working with AirAsia X on the entry into service of this great aircraft with the carrier as it expands its route network to more destinations around the world.”
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