Virgin Atlantic Cargo customers will benefit from more capacity following the news that the airline has ordered 14 Airbus A330-900neos, with the option for six more.
The new aircraft are designed to be 13% more fuel and carbon efficient than the A330-300 they replace and will deliver a 50% reduction in airport noise contour.
Over a 10-year period between 2014-2024, the fuel efficiency of Virgin Atlantic’s fleet will have improved by 32%.
The order, valued at $4.1 billion, is a crucial step in Virgin Atlantic’s fleet transformation programme, which will see 100% of the airline’s aircraft replaced over a 10-year period, creating a fleet with an average age of 5.3 years.
Of the firm order, eight will be purchased and six leased, as Virgin Atlantic continues its investment into increasing the proportion of owned aircraft in its fleet.
Dominic Kennedy, managing director of Virgin Atlantic Cargo says the A330-900neo is expected to be “fantastic aircraft for cargo”, which will support projected growth in the years ahead.
Other upgrades for the year include embracing Accenture’s AFLS 8.0 cargo management platform, opening the state-of-the-art cargo facility at dnata City East at Heathrow Airport in September and the arrival of the first Airbus A350-1000 in the summer.
Kennedy says: “Alongside our upcoming new routes to Tel Aviv, Mumbai and Sao Paulo, there has never been a more exciting time to be a customer of Virgin Atlantic Cargo as we focus on, and invest in, long-term growth and delivering outstanding customer service.”