On Wednesday Greek airline Aegean announced that it wants to buy 30 new Airbus aircraft. The carrier plans to look at 20 A320Neo and 10 A321Neo, Airbus’ largest model in the A320-family, aircraft, with the option of an additional 12 planes from the new generation. This deal is worth up to USD$5 billion, although the actual price for the order might be lower than the list price, which is a common occurance in the airline industry.

Aegean is a star-alliance member and operating a fleet of 47 Airbus jets / picture by Alexander Zur

“It’s a big moment for Aegean … and it’s happening despite the [Greek] financial crisis and despite the challenges of international competition. Those are the conditions we grew in,” said Eftichios Vassilakis, Aegean’s vice chairman.

This plan to modernize and expand Aegean’s current fleet is the biggest investment in Greek’s aviation history. Currently operating 37 A320s, 9 A321s, and one A319, the rejuvenation of their fleet would take part between 2020 and 2025. As the airline is operating 47 Airbus jets, it’s no surprise that the decision that Aegean made is against Boeing and their competing model, the 737 Max, instead in favour of European rival Airbus.

Based in Athens, the star-alliance member is serving  80 destinations. The carrier currently flies mainly to Europe, but it also operates to North Africa and the Middle East when combined with its subsidiary, Olympic Air.

Introducing new Airbus jets, Aegean would not only reduce its fuel consumption by 15%, but could also start flights to new destinations. The A321Neo especially might be a game changer, as the range is noticeably higher compared to that of the A321Ceo (Current engine option), with an operating distance up to 6850 kilometres.

Featured image by Alexander Zur

Categories: Industry Talk