By Connor Sadler
Jet2 Orders First Airbus Aircraft with A321neos
Jet2 announced on Tuesday that it has ordered 36 Airbus A321neo aircraft.
The order is the airline’s first with Airbus, with Jet2 previously preferring Boeing narrowbodies for its operations. However, the Leeds-based airline has been leasing an ex-Condor Airbus A321 since February 2020, according to Airfleets.
According to a press release, Jet2 has also agreed with Airbus for the flexibility to extend the order to up to 60 aircraft.
In the press release, Jet2’s Executive Chairman, Philip Meeson, said, “We are delighted to have placed this order with Airbus and are proud to operate Airbus A321 neo aircraft which has more seats, provides additional operating benefits through lower fuel consumption and is, in our opinion, the most efficient and environmentally friendly aircraft in its class today.”
“It will ensure our customers have a wonderfully comfortable and enjoyable experience as they travel with us for their well-deserved holidays and can enjoy Real Package Holidays from Jet2holidays or scheduled holiday flights with Jet2.com that are increasingly more environmentally sustainable for many years to come,” continued Meeson.
Jet2 will configure the aircraft with 232 seats and an Airspace cabin featuring larger overhead bins. However, the airline hasn’t yet selected the engine it wishes to use on its new A321neos.
Jet2’s press release indicates that Airbus will deliver the new aircraft between 2023 and 2028. The airline ordered the aircraft to meet the future anticipated growth of leisure travel following the coronavirus pandemic.
The Chief Commercial Officer and Head of Airbus International, Christian Scherer, commented on the order in an Airbus press release: “We very much welcome Jet2.com’s decision. Traditionally having been operating non fly-by-wire aircraft, we note with great satisfaction that after having tested a couple of leased A321s and run a comprehensive evaluation, Jet2.com is forward looking and investing in modern and future proof Airbus fly-by-wire technology.”
“This is a testimony to Jet2.com’s vision of efficiency, quality, performance and environmentally friendly flying,” added Scherer.
The value of the firm order is approximately $4.9 billion, increasing to $8.1 billion with the possible 24 extra aircraft. The Jet2 press release states that it will finance the A321neos through a combination of internal resources and debt.
The A321neo can typically fly up to 4000 nautical miles, according to Airbus. Compared to the airline’s existing fleet, this is similar to the 3900 nautical miles a Boeing 757-200 can fly and well above the 2900 miles that the Boeing 737-800 can cover.
In the past, Jet2 has used its fleet of 757s on seasonal transatlantic services to New York. With its high range, this is something that its new A321neos could achieve, although with three fewer seats. The new aircraft could also fly to Jet2’s more popular destinations across Europe.
In previous summer seasons, Jet2 has leased AirTanker’s 327-seat Airbus A330. The A330 enabled them to provide extra seats to popular destinations across its network, including Alicante, Majorca, Tenerife and Lanzarote in Spain, Rhodes in Greece, Antalya and Dalaman in Turkey and Faro in Portugal.