IranAir has outlined new international services for the new Airbus A330 fleet. The fleet, currently consisting of two Airbus A330-200s EP-IJA and EP-IJB, both delivered in March 2017, have so far only operated domestic routes. This has mainly been due to crew training, catering the Nowruz demand during March-April as well as the wait for international flight certificates.
As previously reported, IranAir plans to deploy the Airbus A330 on routes from Tehran-Imam Khomeini Airport to Europe and in late-May 2017 to the Far East. The national carrier was forced to cancel its routes to the Far East due to the lack of aircraft but hopes to initially resume flights from Tehran to Beijing and Kuala Lumpur. There have not been any updates regarding the Far East services.
IranAir’s Airbus A330 fleet was reportedly granted international traffic rights last week and is preparing to be based at Tehran Imam Khomeini Airport for international operations.
As per IranAir’s booking system, the very first international Airbus A330 flight will be performed on 1 May 2017 from Tehran-IKA to Gothenburg, Sweden. The aircraft type is thereafter planned to operate all flights to Gothenburg, scheduled on Mondays.
The second destination to receive the Airbus A330 is Sweden’s capital, Stockholm, to start on 3 May 2017 on Wednesdays and Saturdays. A possible reason why the two Swedish cities have been targeted as the first Airbus A330 destinations is due to the Airbus A330’s larger fuel tank capacity compared to today’s operational Airbus A300 and A310, enabling it to fly non-stop home to Tehran. Presently, IranAir is banned by the ground suppliers from receiving fuel at the Swedish airports. Therefore, a fuel stop in Prague on flights originating from Sweden is needed to fully perform the route, something the Airbus A330 will be capable without as the fuel from Tehran will be enough.
In addition to the two Swedish cities, IranAir will deploy Airbus A330 on flights to Paris-Orly as of 2 May 2017, operated on Tuesdays and Fridays. The schedules to Gothenburg, Stockholm and Paris are currently valid until October 2017, changes may occur.
On 13 April 2017, IranAir signed a contract with ATR concerning 20 aircraft with the first delivery in less than two weeks away.
A few weeks ago, the Ministry of Roads and Urban Development announced that IranAir is ready to take delivery of one Boeing 777-300ER in May 2017, originally ordered by Turkish Airlines.