Volotea will renew its fleet with Airbus A319 to become a full Airbus Operator in the coming two to three years
The Airbus A319 will allow the company to increase its passenger capacity by 20% with 150 seats, compared to the 125 seats of its Boeing 717, and to offer high passenger comfort.
9th March 2016 – Volotea, the airline of mid and small-sized European cities, celebrated the arrival of its first Airbus A319 today with a maiden flight between Toulouse and Nantes and a visit to the Airbus factory. The aircraft is the first of the four Airbus A319 which the airline will receive this year as part of its strategic decision to become an Airbus operator in the mid-term. With the incorporation of four new aircraft, the company will have a fleet of 23 planes, 19 Boeing 717 and four Airbus A319, this year.
To mark the occasion, Volotea was accompanied by authorities from Nantes and Toulouse, executives from Airbus, Civil Aviation, and management from the two city airports, as well as Maxime Leproux, winner of the plane’s naming contest with his proposal Han Volo. The receipt of the first Airbus A319 represents a major milestone in the company’s development since it will allow the airline to transport a higher number of passengers per flight, 150 in comparison with 125 on its current fleet of Boeing 717, and to operate longer distance flights.
VOLOTEA INAUGURATES ITS FIRST AIRBUS A319
Volotea received its first A319 today, 9th March, and commemorated the occasion with a maiden flight between Toulouse and Nantes and a visit to the Airbus factory.
Key authorities from Toulouse, including Bernard Keller, Vice Président de Toulouse Métropole and Mayor of Blagnac, and Philippe Guérin, Président du Comité Régional du Tourisme chez Région Mid-Pyrénées –both members of the Administration from Nantes-; Jacques Gillaizeau, Vice Président de Nantes Métropole and Mayor of Saint-Léger-les Vignes; Bernard Lebeau, Vice Président du Développement Économique (Département Loire-Atlantique); members from Civil Aviation and the Police Force and Airbus executives joined Mr. Carlos Muñoz, CEO and Founder of Volotea, Mr. Lázaro Ros, the company’s Managing Director, and other company executives to celebrate the receipt of the airline’s first A319. This marks the company’s first step towards becoming a full Airbus operator.
During 2016, the low cost airline will add four Airbus A319 to its current fleet of 19 Boeing 717, which will be fully replaced by the A319 in the coming two to three years. The strategic decision to become an Airbus operator was made by the company due to this aircraft’s higher passenger capacity (150 seats in comparison to 125 of the Boeing 717The four new Airbus will be based in Nantes. According to the airline’s current route program, the first Airbus will be used on its main routes between Nantes and Malaga, Ajaccio, Bastia, Montpellier, Palma de Majorca and Venice.
Maxime Leproux, winner of the plane’s naming contest with his proposal “Han Volo”, was one of the fortunate guests to be present on this historic day for the company. He showed delight at being able to attend the event, and pride at seeing Han Volo brandished on the aircraft’s recently painted and shiny livery.
To commemorate the arrival of its first A319, Volotea had planned a full day’s agenda. On landing at Toulouse airport, the plane tunnelled through the arch of water in the traditional aviation christening ceremony, to be welcomed on the runway by Toulouse dignitaries, members of the airport’s executives and staff, and Airbus and Volotea personnel.
“We are very happy to receive our first Airbus. The A319 is a great aircraft with excellent performance and economics, and there is a large fleet available, which will ensure our long-term growth based on this aircraft model,” stated Carlos Muñoz on descending the steps of the plane. “This plane will help us transport our passengers to new and more distant destinations with the comfort and smoothness which our passengers expect.”
“We are delighted that Volotea has selected Airbus for its future expansion. Volotea is a young and dynamic airline that will benefit from the high efficiency of the A319.” said Christopher Buckley, Executive VP Europe, Africa and Pacific. “The A319 is a member of the A320 Family, the best-selling single aisle aircraft family in the market, with the widest cabin for passenger comfort and fast turnarounds.”
After short statements on the runway, guests were taken to the Airbus factory where they were given an exclusive tour of the Airbus factory. A good rapport was established by all and excitement rose as Airbus personnel showed and gave details of the assembly line of A320, belonging to the Airbus family, which receives parts from all over Europe. Those present were then given the opportunity to experience at first hand the Airbus comfort and advances by joining Volotea executives on the plane’s inaugural flight to Nantes.
The plane left Toulouse at 14.45h and during the hour-long flight, the guests felt the comfort of the newly refurbished plane. Leg-room, with a pitch of 30 inches, and comfortable slim-line, reclining seats had been essential factors to the interior design, which is in total alignment to the company’s positioning of a quality travel experience at an attractive price. On board, all toasted the new era for Volotea and as the plane landed, the traditional aircraft christening took place under the water arch to the cheers of those on board. This signified the official handover of the plane to Volotea.
The day marked a milestone in the evolution of the company and all agreed that the partnership between Airbus and Volotea will strengthen the growth of both companies in the future. Satisfaction and the beginning of a new era were agreed by all.
VOLOTEA, STRONG GROWTH ACROSS EUROPE
Volotea continues to grow and fulfil its objectives: in 2012 the Company had two bases (Venice and Nantes) seven in 2015 (Venice, Nantes, Bordeaux, Palermo, Strasbourg, Asturias and Verona) and will open its 8th base in Toulouse in March 2016.
In 2016, the low cost airline will operate flights to three new countries (Portugal, Malta and UK), in addition to the 10 countries it flew to last year (France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Greece, Croatia, The Czech Republic, Israel, Albania and Moldova), offering a total of more than 38,000 flights with 196 routes to 72 cities in 13 countries.
Volotea transported 2.5 million passengers in 2015 and forecasts 3.3-3.5 million passengers in 2016, which represents 35%-40%passenger increase. In addition, the company expects to reach a total of 10 million passengers transported by the end of this year. In the first months of 2016, the company will incorporate four Airbus A319 to its fleet of 19 Boeing 717. This strategic decision will allow the company to increase its passenger capacity by 20%, from its current 125 seats to 150 seats on their aircraft, which will enable Volotea to operate routes with a longer distance and, therefore, to penetrate new markets.
Volotea was awarded on October 21st 2015 with the Prize of the Best Client Service for 2015 in the airline category. In Quality of Service, Volotea scored the highest of all the companies evaluated, with 8.58 / 10, which makes it the leader in the airline category.
Volotea, the airline of mid and small-sized European cities, offers direct flights at attractive prices. Its fleet is currently composed of 19 Boeing 717, with a configuration of 125 seats and will incorporate 4 Airbus A319 by the end of May 2016. Both models are recognized for their comfort and reliability, with Volotea offering reclining seats 5% wider than the average with approximately 30 inches of separation between each row. In 2016, the company will operate more than 38,000 flights across its 196 routes connecting 72 medium and small-sized cities in 13 countries: France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Greece, The Czech Republic, Croatia, Israel, Albania, Moldova, Portugal, Malta and UK. Since its creation in April 2012, Volotea has transported more than 7 million passengers across Europe and transported more than 2.5 million in 2015.
More info : www.volotea.com