These brand new, highly capable, long-haul aircraft will begin arriving in early 2013, and they will be operated on flights to Fiji from Sydney, Auckland, Hong Kong, and Los Angeles.
“This decision is a significant milestone in our 60-year history because it will be our first-ever purchase of new wide-body airplanes, and these state-of-the art A330s are clearly going to be planes that our customers and the people of Fiji will be thrilled to fly,” said Air Pacific’s Managing Director and CEO David Pflieger. “In addition, I can’t begin to tell you how excited our team here in Fiji is with this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to design and outfit new aircraft that will embody the beauty and spirit of Fiji and its 333 islands.”
Air Pacific’s Chairman, Mr. Nalin Patel, echoed that enthusiasm when he said “Dave and his team did a fantastic job in conducting a comprehensive seven-month review of our entire fleet and network and then working with aircraft manufacturers to find the right solution for Air Pacific. The entire Board is very pleased with the outcome of those efforts, and Dave has our full support on this critical decision. The team’s success in finding and financing new planes that can start flying as soon as March of 2013 completely validates the support we provided them when they started their work 17 months ago.”
According to Mr. Pflieger, the landmark acquisition of new Airbus A330s signals a very bright future for the airline. “It’s the right plane at the right time for our company, and it will set us up for another 60 years of success. Our exhaustive evaluation proved not only that the A330-200 was the best plane for Air Pacific, but also that the features and capabilities of this new plane will complement our world-renowned customer service and ensure our passengers enjoy a spacious, comfortable, and relaxing flight on their way to or from Fiji.”
“These A330s will be equipped with the latest in cabin seats and in-flight entertainment, and their optimised 222-inch wide fuselage will accommodate more passengers and cargo than our current B767.” In addition, these new jetliners will have a look and feel that is truly Fijian, appropriately reflecting Air Pacific’s role as Fiji’s ambassador to the world,” said the airline’s CEO.
Mr. Pflieger observed that the new aircraft would also dramatically improve the appeal and effectiveness of Fiji’s national carrier in achieving its goal of becoming the airline of choice in the South Pacific. Mr. Pflieger added that once the new aircraft are operational, he expected their superior range and payload capabilities will also allow Air Pacific to explore the possibility of further growth, more jobs, and adding more destinations to its network.
“Some of the other advantages that these new aircraft will provide are: lower maintenance and operating costs, lower fuel burn and carbon emissions, and superior cargo capacity and capabilities. As a result, we fully expect that our new A330s to significantly help us cut costs and increase revenue – two key objectives for any airline — especially ours,” said Mr. Pflieger.
Mr Pflieger thanked the Air Pacific Board for its unequivocal support in obtaining the new aircraft, and he also thanked the entire Air Pacific staff for their dedication and hard work in getting the Company to where it is today.
“The team at Air Pacific has been working extremely hard for over a year now to cut costs, increase revenue, deliver better operational performance and ensure that we continue to provide world-class customer service. Those efforts have already paid off with better performance across all areas of the company, and I want to thank our team here in Fiji and world-wide for their selfless dedication and efforts to date,” Mr. Pflieger added. “While we have made significant progress on almost all other fronts, and the modernisation of our fleet will provide the capstone to our turnaround and revitalisation plans.”