Air Belgium, with its hub in Brussels South Charleroi Airport, has revealed a stunning new special Airbus A340 livery. The livery has been designed to celebrate the launch of its direct service from Brussels South Charleroi Airport to the West Indies.
Air Belgium will fly one of its four Airbus A340s to Martinique Aimé Césaire International Airport and Pointe-à-Pitre International Airport twice per week, starting on December 7th. The schedule is ongoing with flights departing Brussels every Wednesday and Saturday.
An interesting triangle route
Each rotation on the route will use the A340 for just under 24 hours. Air Belgium also wet leases its fleet of four A340s to other airlines. This route to the West Indies still potentially allows for the specially liveried plane to fly for a client for five days per week. Alternatively, it could allow Air Belgium to launch more routes.
- Brussels to Martinique – Departs 10:45 local time.
- Arrival into Martinique at 14:25 local time.
- Plane on ground in Martinique for 90 minutes.
- Martinique to Pointe-à-Pitre – Departs 15:55 local time.
- Arrival into Pointe-à-Pitre at 16:40 local time.
- Plane on ground in Pointe-à-Pitre for 2 hours.
- Pointe-à-Pitre to Brussels – Departs 18:40 local time
- Arrival into Brussels at 09:10 the following day local time.
Air Belgium has some good fares on their West Indies flights. Looking into 2020, for a return fare from Brussels to Martinique, we found some attractive deals.
Economy Class: Economy class on its A340 aircraft is in a standard 2-4-2 configuration with a seat width of 18 inches and legroom of 31 inches. Economy return prices start from €436 / $483.
Premium Economy: Premium Economy on its A340 aircraft is in a 2-3-2 configuration with a seat width of 20.1 inches and legroom of 36 inches. Premium economy return prices start from €732 / $810.
Business class: Business class seats on its A340 aircraft are laid out in an alternating 2-2-1 and 1-2-1 layout, which allows for ‘throne seats’, as pictured below. The seats have a width of 21.5 inches and, when fully flat, are 79 inches long (around two meters). Business class prices start from €1742 / $1929.
A rocky start for Air Belgium
Air Belgium initially launched a route to Hong Kong which was planned to start in October 2017. This launch date was postponed multiple times, firstly due to not having an air operator’s certificate. When it did receive its certificate, the route had to be delayed again due to not having the right to fly over Russian air space. Its Hong Kong route finally launched on June 2nd, 2018.
Just three months later, in mid-September, Air Belgium announced it would suspend its Hong Kong route for the winter. Later on, in February 2019, the route was terminated.
Air Belgium’s fleet of four Airbus A340s have been busy filling-in capacity for other airlines under wet lease agreements. They have operated flights for Air France, Sun Express, and British Airways. However, with the launch of their new West Indies route, can we see more flights for Air Belgium? Simple Flying thinks so!
Air Belgium has permission to launch flights to the Chinese mainland and has vowed to serve two destinations there, but there have been no announcements as of yet. Other routes on the cards include Kinshasa and Miami.
It will be interesting to see if the new West Indies route is a success, but one thing is for sure… its new livery will certainly WOW the people lucky enough to get a glimpse!
Have you ever flown on Air Belgium? What were they like?