Aer Lingus Takes Delivery Of Airbus’ Final A330-300

Dublin-based national flag carrier of Ireland, Aer Lingus has yesterday taken delivery of Airbus’ last ever A330-300. Sporting the Irish airlines’ new livery and logo, the aircraft registered as EI-EIN took off from Toulouse Friday afternoon heading for Dublin International Airport (DUB).

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Aer Lingus has taken delivery of the last A330-300. Photo: Aer Lingus

The new arrival to the IAG-owned carrier’s long-haul fleet brings its total number of A330-300 aircraft to 11.

Aer Lingus to increase summer capacity to North America

According to a press release from Aer Lingus back in November, the Skytrax World Airline four-star winner said that for summer 2020, it would be increasing capacity on its transatlantic flights.

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In fact, flights from Dublin to Orlando International Airport (MCO) will increase from four per week to six. Furthermore, its service to Miami International Airport (MIA) will increase by one flight per week, from two to three weekly services.

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On the US west coast, flights from Dublin to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) will go from five times per week to a daily service for the summer schedule.

As well as the above-mentioned routes, the arrival of the new Airbus A330-300 will allow Aer Lingus to increase capacity on its flights to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) and Minneapolis−Saint Paul International Airport (MSP).

Aer Lingus replacing its Boeing 757s

On top of the Irish carriers’ new A330-300, Aer Lingus has other fleet adjustments coming. This year it will replace its Boeing 757 fleet in favor of the much more fuel-efficient Airbus A321neo LR.

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The Airbus A321neo LR will replace the airline’s aging Boeing 757s. Photo: Aer Lingus

Commenting on the launch of the 2020 summer schedule, David Shepherd, Chief Commercial Officer, Aer Lingus, said:

 “Transatlantic growth continues to be our priority, and this is being realized in 2020 with the increased frequency and capacity on many direct routes from Dublin. Not only does this strengthen Ireland’s connectivity with the United States but it creates a greater, more efficient connection via Dublin for our neighbors in the UK and Europe.”

At a time when other airlines around the world such as TAP Portugal and Etihad are getting rid of their A330-330s and A330-200 for more efficient A330neos and A350s, it is curious as to why Aer Lingus would want a new A330-300 unless they got one hell of a deal from the European planemaker when the order was placed some time in 2018.

Even Airbus knows that the new A330neo blows the A330-300 out of the water when it comes to cost-per-seat. This is why EI-EIN will be the last aircraft of its type ever built.

For all of us interested in aviation, it is easy to see where the Airbus A321neo LR fits into the Aer Lingus playbook for North America. It automatically replaces the existing Boeing 757 routes while opening up new routes that do not currently have direct flights to the Emerald Isle.

The importance of the American market for Aer Lingus

Between 1820 and 1930, around 4.5 million Irish emigrated to America. Now there are 33 million Americans claiming Irish ancestry – or just over 10%.

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Aer Lingus new cabin crew uniforms. Photo: Aer Lingus

Because of these numbers, the United States will always be the bread and butter destinations for Aer Lingus, who must have a firm plan for their newly delivered Airbus A330-300.

It’s possible that the airline needed extra capacity sooner than later and Airbus had the production for the A330-300 available, not leaving Aer Lingus to wait for an A330neo.

Why do you think Aer Lingus opted to take the last Airbus A330-300? We would love to read what you have to say in the comments section!

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Chuck

As alluded to in the article, I’m sure Aer Lingus got a good deal on the last A330ceo. The true growth potential and to explore new markets is the A320LR and the A320 XLR.

If Aer Lingus plays its cards correctly, it could become the alternate means of linking Europe with North America and the Caribbean.

Dominic Yeo

Farewell, A330ceo.

The Airbus A330 transformed aviation in Asia. Almost every airline, save from ANA and a handful, operates the A330. No aircraft is this dynamic, from operating high frequency under 50min hops to almost ultra long haul, from Seoul to Nairobi, for example, by Korean Air. For so many, the 787 will not even come close to this versatility. This will keep Asia big supporters of the A330.

The passenger experience is even more impressive. I flew the ANA 787 and MU 330 back to back. Noise canceling installed with China Eastern means you no longer really feel the takeoff anymore. If new A330ceos are so comfortable to fly, I can’t wait to fly the next gen A330neo.

Will Cutts

I’m sure Aer Lingus would of got a good deal on the last of the A330ceo’s otherwise they just simply wouldn’t of done it, they are shrewd business people. Going forward I suspect IAG Group will conduct bulk buying from both Airbus & Boeing to avail of large discounts for the individual carriers within the airline group. From there I think Aer Lingus will get the newer A330neo as some of their older A330ceo fleet come up for retirement. That will lower the average age of the fleet & lower fuel consumption –> greater efficiencies & a better client experience. Depending on their network plan, they might get some A350’s for longer haul destinations, Asia & Australia following the Irish diaspora & current commercial trade flows. Aer Lingus does not have to do daily flights to all destinations, they can stagger the days, alternate between destinations & ease into the schedule –> Grow the footprint.

John

Why would they even bother when they could have changed for a newo

John moloney

If it’s the last one to ever be produced it should be put in a museum when it’s retired not scrapped

William

Interesting that Aer Lingus didn’t upgrade from A330ceo to neo.

Max

In your article published Feb 13th you comment that Airbus is reducing A.330 production rates, and that there are 76 “still to be delivered”. Here you say that Aer Lingus just took delivery of the last A.330-300. Does that mean there are still A.330-200’s waiting to be built? This article would suggest at least 70 of them? Or 70 A.330-200’s and -300’s built and sitting around waiting to be delivered??

Mark

Can’t believe they went for such an old plane that is around 21 years old

Alex

Airlines usually get good deals on end-of-production aircraft as a means of keeping production ticking over whilst a replacement aircraft reaches full production. United got a good deal on some 777-300ERs whilst Boeing shifted to 777X production, so it’s likely Aer Lingus got a similar deal from Airbus in preparation for a A330neo production take-over. Most likely reason for this is that it is more expensive to halt and restart production in anticipation for a new variant than it is to sell older variants at a heavy discount to keep production flowing in the meantime.