Himalaya Airlines In Nepal Adds First Airbus A319

Nepalese airline Himalaya Airlines has just taken delivery of its very first Airbus A319. The new jet, registration number 9N-AJK, was officially delivered to Tibet Airlines in June of 2019 but never entered service.

Himalaya Airlines
Himalaya Airlines has added an A319 to its fleet. Photo: Himalaya Airlines

The Chinese-built aircraft was delivered directly from the Airbus final assembly plant in Tianjin, China, to Himalaya Airlines’ base at Tribhuvan International Airport (KTM) in Kathmandu, Nepal on March 2nd, 2020. According to reports in the local media cited by aviation website CH-Aviation, the aircraft was still painted in the livery of Lhasa-based Tibet Airlines.

The A319 will be used for new destinations in China

Once it is repainted in the red, white and blue livery of Himalaya Airlines it will enter service reinforcing the mountain airline’s operations in China.

In a press release about the delivery, Himalaya Airlines said:

“The just-arrived aircraft will not only be able to fly to high altitude destinations like Lhasa and Ali in Tibet but will also allow Himalaya Airlines to increase its flight frequencies and serve more passengers efficiently.”

As well as the newly arrived A319-100, aviation website Planespotters.net says that Himalaya Airlines also operates three A320-200s. The all-Airbus airline is expected to take delivery of a further two A319s by the end of the year, after which three more A319s are expected in a deal done with the Tibet Civil Aviation Development and Investment Co.

Currently, Himalaya Airlines flies to:

  • Abu Dhabi
  • Beijing
  • Chongqing
  • Dammam
  • Dhaka Doha
  • Dubai
  • Kuala Lumpur

About Himalaya Airlines

Himalaya Airlines were founded in 2014 after an agreement between the Yeti World Investment Group and Tibet Airlines. The Kathmandu based airline was a second attempt at forming a Nepalese carrier by the Yeti Group following the collapse of Fly Yeti in 2008.

The new airline commenced operations in May of 2016 with a single Airbus A320 and now flies to eight Asian and Middle East destinations from its single hub at Tribhuvan International Airport (KTM).

Himalaya Airlines is adding new flights to China. Photo: Ujwal977 Wikimedia Commons

Himalaya Airlines is the only Nepalese airline with direct flights to major cities in China. Despite its flights to Middle Eastern destinations, the vast majority of people visiting Nepal are from China. This is why Himalaya Airlines is now shifting its focus to Beijing’s new Daxing International Airport (PKX) and other prominent cities in China with Shanghai and Nanchang due to begin sometime this year.

About the Airbus A319-100

The Airbus A319-100 is a part of the European plane maker’s A320 family of short- to medium-range, narrow-body, commercial passenger twin-engine airliners. The A319 can be configured to carry between124 to 156 passengers and has a maximum range of 3,700 nautical miles (6,900 kilometers).

Standard 3+3 seat configuration on the Airbus A319. Photo: Adrian Pingstone Wikimedia Commons

The aircraft’s final assembly takes place at both the Hamburg/Finkenwerder site in Germany and the Airbus final assembly line (FAL) in Tianjin, China. The A319 shares a common rating with all Airbus A320 family jets allowing Himalaya Airlines’ current A320 pilots to fly the A319 without any further training.

If you have ever had the chance to fly with Himalaya Airlines we would love to hear all about what you think of them in the comments section.