Lion Air: farewell Boeing 747-400, welcome A330neo
After bidding farewell to its last Queen of the skies in March 2019, Lion Air takes delivery of Airbus A330-900, becoming the first operator of the type in Asia-Pacific.
The Indonesian airline received its first Airbus A330-900 on July 19, 2019. The aircraft is leased by BOC Aviation and is the first of 10 A330neos to eventually join the airline's fleet.
Lion Air is the first operator of A330-900 in Asia-Pacific. The airplane in question is only 19th delivery of the type worldwide. The A330neo entered service with TAP Air Portugal in December 2018.
Indonesian carrier will use the new widebody on long-haul non-stop routes, for instance, for pilgrimage flights from cities Indonesian cities (Makassar, Balikpapan and Surabaya) to Jeddah and Medina in Saudi Arabia.
It does appear, however, that the A330neo arrives with a two months delay, as Lion Air was previously expecting the aircraft to reach Indonesia in May 2019. At the time, the airline said it expected to receive two A330neos in 2019, while deliveries of all ten were supposed to span between 2019 and 2020.
Lion Air currently operates a fleet of 116 aircraft, four of which are widebodies. In addition to the new delivery, it also flies three older generation A330s.
Back in March 2019, the situation was quite different, as Lion Air still had Boeing 747 in its fleet. The airline bid farewell to the model on March 24, ending a 19-year-old operations. The aircraft, registration PK-LHG, was also the last 747-400 in Indonesia.
Contrary to the new A330neo, which is configured in an all-economy 440 seat layout, Lion Air operated the 747 in two class configuration, having 12 seats in business class and 492 in economy.
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