AirAsiaX has become the first airline to order the A330neo with a deal for 50 of the aircraft.
“It’s good to break the virginity of an aircraft,” joked director of AirAsiaX, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, at the Farnborough Airshow, where the order was announced yesterday (July 15).
Fernandes, who was one of the customers that had urged Airbus to re-engine the A330, revealed that he left his holiday to agree the deal.
“I asked for the [A330] neo many times, but was told ‘no’ many times in many languages,” Fernandes explained. “I had to make them make this aircraft… If plan A didn’t work we would have kept nagging them. There was no plan B.”
Fernandes said the aircraft will be a “critical” part of AirAsiaX’s fleet and will allow it to offer lower fares and link to larger flights. “Our aim is to make Asia a smaller place,” he said.