In one of the biggest announcements to come out of the Dubai Airshow so far, Air Arabia has placed an order with Airbus for 120 aircraft that includes 20 A321XLRs. While the other Airbus aircraft orders fit in with their current routes, we were wondering what new routes would be ideal for the Airbus A321XLR.
With a range of up to 4,700 nautical miles, Air Arabia will be able to use their A321XLRs on numerous routes to Asia, Europe, and parts of South and North America.
What kind of range does the Airbus A321XLR have?
According to Airbus, the A321XLR is the next evolutionary step in the progression of the European plane makers A320 family of aircraft.
When it enters service in 2023 the Airbus A321XLR will be able to fly 15% further than the Airbus A321LR with distances up to 4,700 nautical miles with the same fuel efficiency.
With the added range airlines will now be able to fly long-haul routes that would not have been profitable with widebody jets. The use of the single-aisle A321XLR will allow airlines like Air Arabia to offer low-cost flights from its hubs in the UAE, Egypt and Morocco.
From Sharjah, Air Arabia can fly the A321XLR to Seoul
Looking at its main hub at Sharjah International Airport (SHJ) in the UAE, Air Arabia would be able to fly to any destination in Europe and Africa and as far as Seoul in South Korea.
Its closest Hub in Egypt at Borg El Arab International Airport, Alexandria (HBE) isn’t advantageous for the Airbus A321XLR as most of the same destinations can be reached from Sharjah.
Where the aircraft could be used well, is from Air Arabia’s hub at Casablanca Mohammed V International Airport (CMN) in Morocco. From Casablanca, the Airbus A321XLR can be used to fly to all the major cities on America’s east coast and parts of South and Central America.
Air Arabia is spending around $14 billion on new planes
Airbus is of course very excited about Air Arabia adding more aircraft to their already fleet of Airbus jets but it is
“This new milestone underpins not only our solid financial fundamentals but also the strength of our multi-hub growth strategy that we have adopted over the years while remaining focused on efficiency, performance and passenger experience,” Al Ali said in a statement carried by CNBC.
“The addition of the A320neo, A321neo and A321XLR complements our existing fleet and allows us to expand our service to farther and newer destinations while remaining loyal to our low-cost business model.”
One thing is for sure we are going to see more of these narrow-body jets on long-haul routes now that they have the range.
We have given a few suggestions on where Air Arabia can deploy its new long-range aircraft. What routes do you think they will be used on? Please let us know in the comments.