Thai Airways eyeing Airbus A350 and Boeing 777x
As fuel prices rise and aircraft begin to show their age, it’s crucial to obtain new aircraft which are more efficient in order to expand, work with current and future market forecasts and remain competitive.
Thai Airways is currently assessing these factors in their fleet renewal plan that has the Airbus A350 and Boeing 777x lined up to potentially replace aircraft within their fleet. Specifically speaking, Thai Airways has submitted plans its government to purchase 23 new widebody aircraft.
The government viewed the plan, but it was recently sent back for another three month review by the airlines’ leadership team. This offers us a slight insight as to when a potential order or request for information might be placed – sometime early in 2019.
Ultimately the goal is to streamline the fleet but also introduce aircraft that will allow for network expansion. The president of Thai Airways has said to media that this order is not a want, but more of a need. The leadership team involved in the decision making and calculations are all hoping the government doesn’t inflict too much changes as they need the room for future growth.
Their fleet consists of a variety of Airbus and Boeing aircraft, consisting of A330-300s, A350-900s, A380s, 747s-400s, 777 family and the 787 family, excluding the 787-10. Both the Airbus A350 and Boeing 777x would offer excellent fleet commonality, with the A350 already in service with the airline.
The availability of these aircraft is what matters. Airbus and Boeing have slots available within their production lists to suit an order. It will eventually come down to what Thai feels necessary. Interestingly enough, Thai has been known to split orders between Airbus and Boeing so there has been discussion within the aviation community that the airline will split the deal.
Further announcements are likely in the near future regarding this order. The leadership teams within Thai Airways and the government will eventually have to come to an agreement, even if one or the other doesn’t get their preferred deal.