South African Airways (SAA) has taken delivery the first of four Airbus A350-900s on lease
The first aircraft arrived in Johannesburg amidst much excitement with employees welcoming.
The aircraft will operate on one of SAA’s ultra-long-haul routes between Johannesburg and New York’s John F Kennedy International Airport (JFK), replacing the Airbus A340-600 on this route and will still be operated on a nonstop basis.
The Airbus A350-900 is configured with a maximum of 339 seats, of which 30 are Business Class seats and 309 are Economy Class seats, with the first six rows in Economy Class offering extra legroom to provide a more comfortable experience, especially on longer flights. The Business Class cabin has lie flat beds.
SAA is set to receive four Airbus A350-900s over a period of six weeks, and all four are expected to operate commercially by mid-December following regulatory approvals and training. SAA will operate the aircraft for three years.
The first two aircraft are nine months old and previously flew commercially with Hainan Airlines. The two A350-900s will be brand new, that were supposed to be delivered to Air Mauritius.
Aircraft number two and three are scheduled for arrival during the first week of November and the fourth aircraft will arrive in early December.