In November 2019, Airbus announced that African carrier Air Senegal had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for eight A220-300 aircraft. At the time, the airline’s CEO, Mr Ibrahima Kane, said that the jets would contribute to developing the airline’s long-haul network to Europe as well as its regional network in Africa. With nearly two years having passed since this announcement, let’s take a look at the latest news surrounding this order.
Modernizing the Air Senegal fleet
The A220-300s ordered from Airbus offer Air Senegal a chance to modernize its fleet with more efficient aircraft. This will enable the airline to reduce its operating costs while offering passengers greater comfort.
Indeed, the A220 order follows an earlier 2019 order for the A330-900. The carrier has taken delivery of two of these jets for its higher-capacity operations. Currently, the one active A330-900 (registered 6V-ANB) is operating fairly regular service between the country’s capital, Dakar and Paris.
“These new A220 aircraft will contribute to develop our long-haul network to Europe and our regional network in Africa. Combined with our recent A330neo aircraft, this new Airbus fleet reveals Air Senegal’s ambition to offer the best travel experience for our passengers.” – Mr Ibrahima Kane, CEO, Air Senegal, via statement.
The latest news on Air Senegal’s A220 order
Small updates have appeared periodically regarding this A220 order. This past May, CAPA noted that the carrier would be receiving the first A220 sometime in late 2021.
Shortly after, it reported that the airline was planning to have multiple configurations for its new jets. Indeed, the CEO stated in an interview with CAPA that the airline would have both a short-range configuration as well as a long-range layout. This will allow the airline to offer its passengers greater comfort on longer services while maximizing capacity for shorter intra-African routes. In terms of longer-distance services, the airline plans to fly the A220s to destinations such as Geneva, London, Lyon, Marseille, and Milan. Service to relatively nearby Lagos was also mentioned as a route for the A220.
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Replacing the A319
Also reported in May 2021 was the airline’s intention to use its new A220s to replace its older Airbus narrowbodies. Indeed, ch-aviation reported that the airline would be replacing its aging Airbus A319s with the A220s.
The airline has two A319-100s with an average age of 14.6 Years. While there are certainly older A320 family aircraft still flying around the world, these two jets have certainly seen a lot of use. Data from ch-aviation notes the following statistics:
- 6V-AMA: 26,192 flight hours and 21,124 flight cycles
- 6V-AMB: 26,873 flight hours and 21,607 flight cycles
These jets are configured with 120 seats (108 in economy and 12 in business class). Considering the A220-300 has a 2-class configuration capacity between 120-150, the new jets would seem to be the perfect replacement for these older A319s.
Are you looking forward to Air Senegal operating the Airbus A220-300? Let us know by leaving a comment!