North African airline Tunisair has signed a letter of acceptance of the Airbus proposal for the acquisition of three A350-800s, three A330-200s and ten A320s, as part of an important fleet development plan that will modernise and expand the fleet of this growing airline. With this acquisition, Tunisair is the third African airline to order the all-new A350 XWB. Tunisair currently already has 12 A320s, four A319s of which two with extended range capability and three A300-600s in operation.
The all-new, eco-efficient A350s will provide the right aircraft at the right time for the long-term development plans of Tunisair for long haul routes to North America and Asia. Meanwhile, the A330s will allow the airline to modernize its wide-body fleet and seamlessly enter the long haul market with new routes to North America in the near future with the most modern and cost efficient aircraft in the market today. Furthermore, the A320s will allow Tunisair to renew and expand its regional operations with more efficient and cost effective aircraft complementing its current fleet.
“This acquisition is part of a major fleet development that will allow Tunisair to prepare for the future and take up the market opportunities that exist for our airline,” said Mr. Chettaoui, President and CEO of Tunisair group. “The A330s and later on the A350 will really complement our A320 fleet which is already performing extremely well. This acquisition will provide Tunisair with the most modern, efficient and comfortable aircraft that perfectly respond to our needs in terms of range, passenger capacity and operational costs”, he continued.
The longstanding relationship started in 1980, when Tunisair placed its first order for an Airbus A300B4. It has built up its Airbus fleet from then onwards, with the first A320 order placed in 1988, one of the first orders for Africa. In another pioneering move, with the order in 2006 for the A319 Extended-Range, Tunisair was the first airline to start operating this aircraft type in Africa, benefiting from Airbus’ continuous efforts for innovation and technological advancements.