LONDON – Air Cote d’Ivoire has placed an order for two Airbus A330neo aircraft, which opens up the carrier’s opportunity to go long-haul.
At the moment, the carrier operates a fleet of one A320neo, two A320ceos, and three A319s, which mainly cater to the short and medium-haul routes in their arsenal.
Airbus said the following on this in a statement:
“The A330neo is the new generation version of the popular A330 widebody. Incorporating the latest generation engines, a new wing, and a range of aerodynamic innovations, the aircraft offers a 25% reduction in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.”
“The A330-900 is capable of flying 7,200nm / 13,300km non-stop.”
“Operating the A330neo side by side with its Airbus Single Aisle fleet will enable Air Côte d’Ivoire to benefit from huge operational savings and more flexibility generated by Airbus’ unique commonality among its aircraft Family members.”
At the end of September 2022, around 275 firm orders from 20 different customers worldwide have been sold.
Is Africa-Europe Becoming Popular?
Carriers in Africa are beginning to opt for more frequencies and routes into Europe, which has been evidently seen lately from the likes of RwandAir.
Around a week ago, the airline announced that it will be launching direct flights between London Heathrow and Kigali ahead of the busy Winter 2022 season.
The carrier has been operating flights to London already but has a stop-over in Brussels. However, from November 6, this will transition into direct services.
This particular route will operate on a four times per week basis on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
The flight will depart Kigali at 2335 local time before arriving in London at 0620 the next morning. The aircraft will then stay at Heathrow until 2030 local time and will arrive back in Kigali at 0700 local time the next day.
You can say the same applies to Ethiopian Airlines, who yesterday announced that it will add new flights into Switzerland with service to the capital, Zurich.
Beginning on October 31st, the carrier will operate the service on a thrice-weekly basis using its Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft.
The carrier already operates services into Switzerland, with its Geneva flights already in full swing. This service will be expanded to four times per week by the end of October.
Clearly Demand Is There…
Overall, it remains clear that there is a lot of demand to capitalize on when it comes to travel into Africa, and Air Cote d’Ivoire has become the latest airline to do so.
Looking ahead, it’s going to be interesting to see what destinations the airline plans to operate with these two A330neo aircraft and whether they will be on high-density routes or not.
All eyes will, of course, be on the airline to see what sort of success they will have with this aircraft on the long-haul routes they plan to operate and whether this could be a turning point in the airline’s strategy.