With Airbus declaring a backlog of 6,034 A320neo family aircraft as of August 2020, the line of jets is sure to be a staple of the short-to-medium-haul market for decades to come. Let’s look at the airlines that have ordered the most jets from the A320neo family.
Before we begin, we should note that our relatively short list needs some definitions since things can get surprisingly complicated.
For us, the A320neo will cover the A320neo family: including the A320neo, A321neo, A321LR, and A321XLR. Additionally, it gets a little tricky with assigning numbers when airline groups are involved. While AirAsia is technically a group of airlines, its brand is consistent throughout all of its companies in Malaysia, Indonesia, India, etc. (sadly, AirAsia Japan is shutting down.) For the purposes of our article, we are considering AirAsia and its multiple airlines to be a single entity.
On the other side, however, while Indigo Partners placed its massive A320neo order for 430 A320neo family jets in 2017, these aircraft will be dispersed to very distinct and separate airline brands, including Wizz Air, Volaris, Frontier, and JetSmart. We will look at the airlines themselves and not Indigo Partners as a whole (which is not to be confused with Indian carrier IndiGo, which holds top spot!).
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The world’s largest A320neo customer: IndiGo
India’s IndiGo, a booming low-cost-carrier, has a total of 730 A320neo family aircraft ordered. Many have already been delivered, but there are still hundreds more yet to arrive. According to Indian news outlet Business Today, it had previously ordered A320neo family aircraft in three tranches: 180 in 2011, 250 in 2015, and its largest – 300 – in 2019.
On October 29th, 2019, the airline’s order for 300 A320neo family aircraft made it one of Airbus’ largest aircraft orders ever with a single airline operator. This latest IndiGo order is a mix of the standard A320neo, the stretched A321neo, and the long-range A321XLR.
“This order is an important milestone, as it reiterates our mission of strengthening air connectivity in India, which will in turn boost economic growth and mobility. India is expected to continue with its strong aviation growth and we are well on our way to build the world’s best air transportation system, to serve more customers and deliver on our promise of providing low fares and a courteous, hassle free experience to them,” -Ronojoy Dutta, Chief Executive Officer of IndiGo
AirAsia Group is the 2nd largest A320neo customer. In total, it has placed orders for 592 A320 Family aircraft. However, not all of these are the NEO version. According to a 2017 press release from Airbus, AirAsia has ordered 404 A320neo family aircraft.
In August 2019, AirAsia Group brand AirAsia X ordered 30 A321XLRs as part of a deal, including A330neos. This would bring the total order for A320neo family aircraft to 434 for the AirAsia family of airlines.
AirAsia’s A320neos will fly out of its bases in Malaysia, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Thailand. AirAsia Japan recently declared that it would cease operations.
Drastically lower than the airlines in first and second spot is Indigo Partner airline Wizz Air. The Hungarian budget airline flys all over Europe and recently expanded its operations to the Middle East with Wizz Air Abu Dhabi.
In total, Wizz Air has a total of 267 A320neo family aircraft on order. A mix of A320neo and A321neos, this also includes 20 A321 XLRs due for delivery from 2023.
Were you aware of all of these A320neo orders? Have you flown on the aircraft yet? Let us know in the comments.