Turkish Airlines announces massive Airbus order
Istanbul, March 16, 2013
Turkish Airlines, a Star Alliance member and one of the fastest growing carriers of the world, has announced plans to add 117 new Airbus aircraft into its fleet by 2015 in line with its global expansion strategy.
With 211 aircraft operating in its network, Turkish Airlines has become one of the biggest airline companies in aviation industry and the new orders will take its fleet strength to 375, including cargo airplanes.
Announcing the giant purchase, the Turkish Airlines board of directors said the national carrier continues to boost its share in the global aviation market by entering new territories and flying record number of passengers.
Turkish Airlines had last year carried a record 39 million passengers, which, the airline, expects will reach 46 million by the end of this year and 90 million by the end of 2020.
A leading player in the Europe aviation sector, the Turkish Airlines registered $8 billion turnover last year. The company now aims to achieve a $18 billion turnover in the next seven years.
The company said the new planes to join the fleet include 25 A321, 4 A320 Neo and 53 A321 Neo. Besides, Turkish Airlines has the option to purchase a further 35 additional A321 Neos which will be delivered by 2015.
In a major decision, the board planned to cut down the average fleet age to 5 from its current 6.6 years by the end of 2020.
On the new Airbus order, Turkish Airlines said with the delivery of the 117 aircrafts, it will have a total seating capacity of 21,644 and this will be redoubled to more than twice when currently the existing 37,800 seat capacity gets included.
On the new planes, Turkish Airlines said Airbus will be using corrosion-resistant material on all these fuel-efficient aircraft bodies. The aircrafts will boast of the latest technology and will help the company in easy maintenance and providing low operating costs.
Thanks to its selection of narrow-body A321 family, the Turkish national carrier will get a significant cost advantage. Also these A321 NEO aircrafts will help in boosting the airline's long-haul flight destinations.
As of today, Turkish Airlines boasts of 15,679 employees serving in various positions as cockpit crew, cabin crew and technicians. This, the company said, will rise to 29,000 once the new aircraft join the network adding about 5,758 pilots, 12,452 cabin personnel, 970 technicians and other 9,765 staff.
The board said it is taking several key steps to address this issue and boost the airline's efficiency.
Established in 1933 with a fleet of only five airplanes, Turkish Airlines today is a four-star airline flying to 219 cities around the world, comprising 36 domestic and 183 international destinations.
One of the fastest growing airline companies, Turkish Airlines has received several “Passengers Choice Awards” from the consumer ranking group, Skytrax.-TradeArabia News Service