Uganda Airlines has received their first ever wide body aircraft, the Airbus A330neo. This is the first of an order of two A330neo crafts that the airline placed back in 2019 when they announced their revival plans. The second aircraft is expected to be delivered sometime in 2021.
Cornwell Muleya, CEO of Uganda Airlines, said: “We are delighted to welcome our new Rolls-Royce powered Airbus A330neo into service. The efficiencies of this aircraft, together with Rolls-Royce’s Trent 7000 engines, will help us deliver a great value offering to our passengers.”
Airbus joined in congratulating the airline on their milestones and highlighting some of the key advantages they will derive from the aircraft like superior comfort and excellent range versatility.
The engine manufacturer, Rolls-Royce, through their Senior Vice President Customers, John Kelly, said: “We are delighted that Uganda Airlines selected the Rolls-Royce powered Airbus A330neo. Uganda Airlines has a bold vision, and we are proud to be part of that future. This excellent aircraft with Trent 7000 engines will help Uganda Airlines create new connections across Africa and the rest of the world. This delivery adds another new Rolls-Royce customer in Africa, which is a very important market for us.”
The exclusive engine for the A330neo, the Trent 7000 is the seventh in a Trent family that has now accumulated more than 150 million engine flying hours. The Trent 7000, which first entered service in November 2018, draws on more than 50 million flying hours of experience from the Trent 700, the engine of choice for the original version of the A330. The 68-72,000lb thrust Trent 7000 helps the A330neo reduce environmental impact with a 14% improvement in fuel burn per seat (compared to the A330ceo) and a significant reduction in noise.
The aircraft features a premium cabin interior with a total of 258 seats. The business class is limited to 20 fully reclinable seats in a staggered 1-2-1 configuration. Meanwhile, the aircrafts has a total of 210 economy seats in a 2-4-2 layout. Each seat is fitted with IFE screens and adjustable dark orange leather headrests while the premium economy has 28 seats with more legroom and is configured in 2-3-2.
The arrival of the new widebody aircraft marks a great milestone for the airline which was revived in August last year after an 18 year absence. The airline intends to deploy the new wide body craft on routes from Entebbe to London, Dubai, and Guangzhou.
The carrier will make a re-entry into the long-haul overseas market and a chance to establish itself and offer competition to the likes of Ethiopian Airline and Kenya Airways.