Virgin Atlantic has bought six A330-300 long-range aircraft from Airbus, and is leasing a further four from AerCap.
The contract was completed on Dec. 30, 2009, following an initial announcement in June.
Industry analysts say Airbus could surpass its 2009 target of 300 orders after a scramble to firm up provisional orders or book new ones in time for the year's closing amid signs some airlines are starting to look beyond the downturn. [ID:nLDE60A0MD]
British based Virgin Atlantic Airways, has bought six A330-300 long-range aircraft from Airbus, and is leasing a further four from AerCap. The contract was formally completed on December 30th, 2009, following an initial announcement earlier in June. The aircraft are Virgin Atlantic's first A330s, and underscores a commitment by the carrier to invest in today's most eco efficient aircraft.
The aircraft will strengthen services between the United Kingdom, North America, the Caribbean, Africa and Asia, for both business and leisure markets. Virgin's A330-300s will seat up to 270 in Upper Class, Premium Economy and Economy, and will be the launch aircraft for revolutionary onboard cabin innovations in every class.
"The A330s are adding immense operational flexibility to Virgin's modern fleet and at the sametime fit in with our commitment to invest in today's most environmentally efficient aircraft," said Steve Ridgway, Chief Executive, Virgin Atlantic Airways.
"Coming from one of Airbus' most valued customers, this significant order is a thumbs up for our A330," said John Leahy, Airbus Chief Operating Officer Customers. "The A330 is a leader in aircraft reliability, comfort, and low fuel burn making it the most eco-efficient aircraft in its class." Virgin Atlantic Airways became an Airbus operator in November 1993.
To date, Virgin operates six A340-300s and 19 A340-600 aircraft. Virgin is also a customer for six A380s. The twin engine A330 is one of the most widely used wide body aircraft in service today.
To date, Airbus has won more than 1,000 orders for the various versions of the aircraft. More than 600 A330s have already been delivered and the aircraft is currently flying with over 80 airlines worldwide.