Press Release Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: Ethiopian, the fastest growing airline in Africa, is pleased to announce that it has taken delivery of the first of its five re-configured Bombardier Q-400 aircraft on 28 September 2012 in Toronto, Canada.
Based on its valued customers feed back, the airline requested the manufacturer to reconfigure the new Q-400 and as result, Ethiopian is now the first airline to take delivery of this aircraft with new reconfiguration. The new aircraft contain numerous innovations that will greatly enhance passenger comfort. Whereas the previous Q-400s were all economy, the new aircraft will have 7 business class and 60 economy class seats. The new configuration also has a second lavatory which gives exclusive access to business class passengers.
Unlike the previous Q-400s, the new aircraft will have reclining seats in economy class cabin and a hot galley enabling the service of hot meals on regional flights. The new airplanes will also have more luggage capacity and extra overhead bin space and leg room.
The Q-400 is an ideal aircraft for domestic and regional flights with a speed closer to narrow body jet airplanes and with reduced fuel consumption and emission.
On top of its 17 domestic destinations, the airline operates the Q-400 on regional routes such as Djibouti, Mombasa, Nairobi, Kilimanjaro, Dar-es-Salam, Zanzibar, Entebbe, Kigali, Juba, Khartoum and Berbera. “After listening to our customers feed back and understanding customers concerns on cabin features of the aircraft in the last two and a half years, we have worked with Bombardier on the innovative reconfiguration. We are very happy on the new configuration which will enable us to provide customized and the best possible service on domestic and regional routes. Now, our cloud nine customers can enjoy a full-fledged business class service, and our connecting passengers from Ethiopian and Star Alliance network will benefit from a greatly improved product in line with our continuous effort to provide a seamless travel experience”, said Chief Executive Officer Tewolde Gebremariam.
All 5 re-configured Q-400s will be delivered to Ethiopian before the end of this year. The airline also plans to re-configure the Q-400 already in its fleet in order to meet its customers’ expectations.
Ethiopian Airlines, the fastest growing airline in Africa, made its maiden international flight to Cairo in 1946 and now the Airline provides dependable services to 69 international destinations spanning four continents.
Ethiopian is proud to be a Star Alliance Member. The Star Alliance network is the leading global airline network offering customers convenient worldwide reach and a smoother travel experience. The Star Alliance network offers more than 21,555 daily flights to 1,356 airports in 193 countries.
Ethiopian is a multi-award winner for its commitment and contributions towards the development and growth of the African aviation industry and in recognition of its distinguished long-haul operations enhanced by the introduction of new routes and products. Recently, Ethiopian won Gold in the African Airline of the Year 2011/2012 Awards organized by the African Aviation News Portal. Ethiopian also received the 2011 AFRAA award for being consistently profitable over the years and has won the “AFRICAN CARGO AIRLINE OF THE YEAR 2011 Award” for its excellence in air cargo. Ethiopian also won the NEPAD Transport Infrastructure Excellence Awards 2009 and “the Airline of the Year 2009 Award” from the African Airlines Association (AFRAA).
With its acquisition of and firm orders for several new modern fleet, the airline is well positioned to pursue aggressively the implementation of its 2025 strategic plan to become the leading aviation group in Africa.