Fiji Airways will become the first airline in the South Pacific to operate the new A350-900 after they ordered two of the Airbus aircraft.
The new aircraft will be first put hard to work on the carrier’s Auckland route from the end of this year, as reported by Australian Business Traveller.
“We are extremely pleased with this selection and proud of the confirmed arrangements with Dubai DAE Capital as the lessor, and Rolls-Royce as the engine supplier,” said Fiji Airways chief executive Andre Viljoen in a press release.
“A luxury, world-class destination like Fiji deserves a luxury, world-class travel experience and that’s exactly what these aircraft will deliver… for our guests, the holiday starts the moment they board the aircraft,”
What are the details?
Fiji Airways has been taken the step to expand its widebody fleet by leasing two A350-900 aircraft. They will join six A330s and further expand capacity on their Pacific routes. Because the A350s and the A330s are of the same type rating, Fiji Airways pilots won’t need much retraining.
Fiji Airways plans to use these aircraft on routes from Fiji to Auckland, Sydney, and California; they have launched a new business strategy to win transpacific travel from Australia to America, convincing Australians and Americans alike to stop over in Fiji.
This fleet upgrade comes at a time with the airline facing challenging times ahead. Fiji Airways halved their profit this year.
“Hence the need to invest in modern, fuel-efficient aircraft that aligns with our commitment to providing a world-class travel experience.” Mr. Viljoen mentioned during the announcement “The outlook for 2019 remains challenging”
What will service be like onboard?
The CEO of Fiji Airways, Andre Viljoen, has said that their team is hard at work getting the aircraft ready for passengers.
“Our teams are currently customizing the aircraft to our specifications, including our world-renowned livery and designs which proudly represent the people of Fiji.”
The planes will carry 33 business class passengers in the famous Collins Aerospace Super Diamond lie-flat seats. This business class seat is the same in the upcoming British Airways Club World, as well as on Virgin Australia, Qatar Airways, and Air Canada.
The cabin will be in a 1-2-1 configuration, offering direct aisle access for all passengers. A step up from the classic 2-2-2 found on their A330 fleet.
Additionally, the aircraft will seat 301 economy class passengers in a standard 3-3-3 layout. The aircraft will also have Wi-Fi throughout the flight.
When will it fly?
For those keen to be one of the first onboard, we have some good and bad news for you.
The bad news is that Fiji Airways has not yet revealed when the aircraft will be flying, nor how much or when tickets will go on sale. The good news is that they have confirmed that it will fly before the end of this year.
The first delivery will be in November and the second in December. Just in time for a quick Christmas getaway.
Will you be flying on the new Fiji Airways A350-900? Let us know in the comments.