Air Mauritius has taken delivery of its first A330-900, on lease from ALC, during a ceremony held in Toulouse.
The national carrier of the republic of Mauritius is the first A330neo operator based in the southern hemisphere, and the first airline in the world to operate a combination of both the A330neo and A350 XWB.
Benefiting from the A330neo operating economics and award-winning Airspace cabin, the aircraft is named Aapravasi Ghat in reference to Mauritius’ history and will feature a two-class cabin with 28 business class seats and 260 economy class seats.
The carrier will deploy the aircraft on routes connecting Mauritius to Europe (mainly London and Geneva), India and south-east Asia and on regional destinations including Johannesburg, Antananarivo and Reunion Island.
Air Mauritius chief executive, Somas Appavou stated: “I am delighted to welcome our first Airbus A330neo, another milestone in our fleet modernisation programme.
“The addition of two A330neos to our fleet will bring more flexibility and efficiency to our operations while supporting our network strategy.
“The A330neo offers similar levels of comfort as the A350 XWB, which has received very favourable feedback from our customers.
“I strongly believe that with the addition of the A330neo to our fleet, Air Mauritius will further reinforce its focus and emphasis on the customer who are at the very core of our business model.”
Air Mauritius currently operates nine Airbus aircraft of which two are A350-900s, three A340-300s, and two A330-200s, as well as two A319s on its regional and long-haul services.
Ian Nash, regional manager for the UK & Ireland at Air Mauritius added: “We are confident that this new cutting-edge aircraft will provide the perfect start for our passengers to begin their holiday to Mauritius and are proud to be the first operator to introduce this aircraft to the Indian Ocean on our route from the UK.”
“Air Mauritius is renowned for providing guests and visitors to Mauritius with a welcoming experience that reflects the culture and hospitality of our beautiful island, as soon as they step on-board.
“The quality of the new on-board product will perfectly complement the warm Mauritian welcome as well as our diverse menu choice and quality service.”
The carrier is considered the Indian Ocean’s Leading Airline by voters at the World Travel Awards.
“Sugar and spice and all things nice! Like its namesake, inspired by the island’s history in developing the sugar industry, their first A330neo will pioneer Air Mauritius into a whole different level of efficiency and flexibility by operating both the A330neo and the A350 XWB, our latest generation widebodies,” said Christian Scherer, Airbus chief commercial officer.
“Passengers will enjoy unmatched levels comfort in our award winning ‘Airspace by Airbus’ cabins on both aircraft.
“Well done to our trusted partner on being the world’s first airline to operate the A330neo and the A350 XWB together – a sweet combination!”
The A330neo family is the new generation A330, comprising two versions: the A330-800 and A330-900 sharing 99 per cent commonality.
It builds on the proven economics, versatility and reliability of the A330 family, while reducing fuel consumption by about 25 per cent per seat versus previous generation competitor aircraft and offering an unrivalled range capability.
The A330neo is powered by Rolls-Royce’s latest-generation Trent 7000 engines and features a new wing with increased span and new A350 XWB-inspired Sharklets.
With an order book of more than 1,700 aircraft from 120 customers to date, the A330 is the most popular widebody family.