- Airline says negotiations with Airbus for new fleet from 2022 underway
IBOM AIR has said that its two newly acquired Airbus A220 On aircraft will from Wednesday 30 June 2021, start operations on the Nigerian skies, just as it says it is currently in negotiations with Airbus to procure a fleet of brand new A220s for deliveries commencing 4th quarter 2022.
The airline said that its wet-leased Airbus will bring much needed capacity, more comfort, enhanced safety and increased reliability to the domestic air travel market as they are deployed into the skies. READ MORE: ‘Ibom Air’s anticipated A220s are game changers’
In a statement signed by Group Manager Marketing Ibom Airlines Limited, Aniekan Essienette, the arrival of both leased jets enables the airline to now provide the much-needed capacity sought by its fast-increasing clientele.
Both leased aircraft, according to the statement, are the result of the airline’s decision to fast track its fleet development plan in order to respond to a surge in passenger numbers, which stretched the capacity of its CRJ900 fleet to the maximum.
Ibom Air’s passengers on the Lagos-Abuja route can now experience 3 flights each way daily, in the comfort of the A220. READ MORE: Updated: Ibom Air’s A220 aircraft touches down at MMIA, second aircraft expected
The A220, according to the airline, will also serve the Uyo to Lagos and Uyo to Abuja routes, while the airline’s fleet of 5 CRJ900s fills up any gaps, providing adequate capacity on all the other routes.
The Airline’s Chief Operaring Officer, Mr. George Uriesi said, “we are pleased to introduce the Airbus A220, one of the most advanced passenger jets in the world, into the Nigerian domestic market. While our fleet of Bombardier CRJ900s did a splendid job powering the airline during its start-up phase, we had to adjust our business strategy and fast track our move to higher capacity aircraft. With the introduction of the A220, this capacity squeeze will be adequately addressed.”
On negotiation plans with Airbus, the airline said that was well on the way and it chose to bridge the urgent capacity gap by wet-leasing these 2 new jets from Egypt air as a stop-gap measure.