SriLankan unveils new aircraft, changes schedule
Dubai, December 20, 2008
SriLankan Airlines is introducing new aircraft and retiring four older ones in its narrow-body fleet, as a result of which the carrier's flight schedule is undergoing several temporary changes.
Two new Airbus A320 aircraft have already been acquired, the first of which arrived on November 30, with the second due within this month.
Two more are being actively sourced, and until they arrive the airline is temporarily suspending services to four of its less popular destinations – Calicut, Cochin, Coimbatore and Hyderabad from January 15 until the end of the winter season.
SriLankan will continue to serve all the other destinations in its route network. The airline recently commenced operations to Rome to cater to the ethnic Sri Lankan community in Italy, and also to generate tourist traffic to Sri Lanka and the Maldives.
The two newly acquired aircraft will join the fleet after painting of exteriors in SriLankan’s colours and livery later this month. This is being carried out by SriLankan Engineering at Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport.
The suspension of operations to these four Indian cities will not affect the country’s tourism, export industry or its travelling public.
The airline will also continue to fly to the country’s major tourism generating markets in Europe. Sri Lanka’s export industries will also continue to be supported, including its exports of fruits and vegetables to the Maldives, to which the airline recently increased flights.
All Southeast Asian and Far East destinations popular among Sri Lankan travellers and passengers of other nationalities transiting Colombo will remain unchanged, said a statement.
The country’s labour traffic to the Middle East will also not be affected as there will not be any significant changes to schedules in that region.-TradeArabia News Service