Air Seychelles, the national airline of the Republic of Seychelles, has become the first airline in the Indian Ocean and African region to take delivery of a new Airbus A320neo aircraft.
Named “Veuve” after the critically endangered bird commonly known as the Seychelles Paradise Flycatcher, the single aisle aircraft registered as S7-VEV is configured with 12 Business Class and 156 Economy Class seats.
Touching down at the Seychelles International Airport, “Veuve” was welcomed by a ceremonial water-cannon salute witnessed by high-level government dignitaries, stakeholders, members of travel and trade as well as media partners.
Delegates on the ferry flight included Air Seychelles’ Chief Executive Officer, Remco Althuis; Chief Operations Officer, Sandy Benoiton; CDB Aviation’s Head of Commercial for Africa, Europe and Middle-East, Peter Goodman; Airbus Head of Airline Marketing Pacific and Sub-Saharan Africa, Joep Ellers; Airbus Sales Director, Marino Modena; as well as key members of the airline’s senior management team.
The ferry flight, which departed Hamburg, Germany, on Thursday, 1 August, was commanded by Captain Nicole Chang-Leng and First Officer Steven Jasmin, and made a short stopover in Abu Dhabi before proceeding to the Seychelles, under the command of Captain Hervé Morel and First Officer Samuel Lautee.
Powered by the new-generation LEAP-1A engine from CFM International, the new A320neo jetliner is designed to save fuel through efficient engines and features like fuel-saving wingtip devices known as sharklets.
“The A320neo will allow Air Seychelles to increase capacity on its network, while delivering significant fuel savings and reducing the airlines’ operating costs,” the airline said.
It was over 18 years ago in 2001 that Air Seychelles last took delivery of a new aircraft. The Boeing 767-300ER which was registered as S7-ASY is currently being operated by Air Canada Rouge.
The airline’s current fleet consists of Airbus A320 and Viking Air Twin Otter turboprop aircraft. Its Airbus A320ceos will be replaced by brand new A320neo jets.