Philippine carrier Cebu Pacific has signed a Purchase Agreement with Airbus for the order of 16 A330 long-range aircraft worth US$4.8 billion.
In a statement, the low-cost airline said it is looking to utilize the aircraft on trunk routes within the Philippines and the rest of Asia, as well as on long-haul routes to Australia and the Middle East.
The 16 A330neo jets are scheduled for delivery between 2021 and 2024 as Cebu Pacific expects to have an all-next generation fleet of Airbus jets by 2024.
The jet orders will also accelerate the carrier’s plan to boost capacity while shifting to more fuel-efficient and eco-friendly aircraft.
“The A330neo is integral to our fleet modernization program. With this purchase, we aim to reduce our fuel emission and build a more sustainable operation. This will also give us the lowest cost per seat, at the same time enabling CEB to increase seat capacity and maximize valuable airport slots in Manila and other Asian megacities,” said Lance Gokongwei, president and CEO of Cebu Pacific.
The Purchase Agreement is part of the Memorandum of Understanding signed by Cebu Pacific with Airbus in June 2019 during the Paris Air Show for an order of 31 next-generation aircraft, which also includes 15 A320neo family jets.
The 16 A330neo aircraft will be fitted with up to 460 seats, five percent more capacity than the current A330ceo aircraft in the CEB fleet.
The A330neos — that has an extended-range capability of up to 15,000 kilometres, while reducing fuel consumption by as much as 25% versus older-generation competing aircraft — will replace CEB’s current A330ceos, which will be retired as the new aircraft are delivered.
Currently, Cebu Pacific has accepted delivery of eight brand-new aircraft from Airbus —three A321neo and four A320neo; as well as an ATR 72-600.
The CEB fleet is comprised of a total of 74 aircraft, including 31 Airbus A320, eight A330, seven ATR 72-500, 13 ATR 72-600, and an ATR Cargo Freighter, which is used by subsidiary Cebgo to service inter-island flights in the Philippines where jet operations are not possible.
The carrier is expecting delivery of two more Airbus A321neo aircraft by end-2019.
Cebu Pacific currently flies to at least 26 international destinations and around 32 domestic routes.