Airline fleets are expanding
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
While recent years have not been kind to the airline industry, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently revised its global aviation outlook for 2012 to show that carriers are expected to earn $4.1 billion this year. Looking ahead to 2013, the IATA projects profits to rise to $7.5 billion.
The IATA's projection may not prove to be 100 percent accurate, but the fact that multiple airlines are expanding the size of their fleets is a good indication that travelers still have a desire to fly around the world. Here are just a few of the carriers that plan to grow in the current economy:
United Airlines receives its first Dreamliner
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner, which comes outfitted with 219 seats across three cabins, is expected to improve travelers' flying experience. Recently, United Airlines added one to its fleet.
"As the North American launch customer, we are delighted to be getting our first 787 Dreamliner," said Jeff Smisek, United Airlines' president and chief executive officer. "As we continue to build the world's leading airline, we are excited for our customers and co-workers to experience this game-changing aircraft."
The airplane is actually the first of five Dreamliners the carrier expects to acquire before year's end. In total, United Airlines ordered 50 of the planes for its fleet. Initially, travelers who are looking to fly to their serviced apartments aboard a Dreamliner will have to do so from United's Houston hub in Texas.
Air Canada aims to expand internationally
Air Canada recently announced that it plans to expand its Boeing 777 fleet to 20 aircraft, with the addition of two Boeing 777-300ER planes. This move will provide the carrier with more growth opportunities within its international network. The carrier will also receive its first Dreamliners in 2014.
"The arrival of these new Boeing 777s, along with the 787 Dreamliners in 2014, will allow us to introduce new routes at the mainline carrier and release aircraft from our existing fleet to our new low-cost leisure carrier," said Calin Rovinescu, Air Canada's president and chief executive officer.
Emirates gains another Airbus
Adel al Redha, Emirates' executive vice president of engineering and operations, said that the Airbus A380 is one of the pillars of the airline's future growth, according to Travel Daily News. For this reason, the carrier seems poised for success, as it recently welcomed its 25th Airbus to its fleet.
Not only does Emirates have the largest fleet of A380s in the world, it will also establish the very first A380-exclusive terminal at Dubai International Airport in 2013.