At 4:00pm Rwandans welcomed the big bird RwandAir’s brand new Airbus 330-200, named Umurage (Heritage), describing it as a relief to challenges in the region’s airline industry.
The 274-seater, aircraft will be the first of its kind in the region, adding that the new plane will enhances the capacity of Africa’s fastest growing airline to expand its footprint across the globe.
The acquisition of these two wide-body aircraft is expected to increase RwandAir’s capacity and provide exceptional service quality for the ever-growing Asia-China and European passenger markets.
Besides the several African routes, Rwandair plans to go to Europe, America and the Far East. Rwanda’s latest aircraft Umurage , brand new Airbus 330-300 making it the 11th on the fleet.
In a ceremony to receive the aircraft today, John Mirenge, the CEO of RwandAir said the company is proud of this landmark achievement where the carrier doubled seat capacity in just three months.
He said “The Aircraft S 330-300 is bigger than anything that we have ever owned. The last time you remember we thought that Ubumwe was bigger. But I think you agree with me that this is much bigger and indeed more beautiful.”
Mirenge was excited with the beautiful seats and other amenities in the aircraft which is configured around three spaces including; RwandAir Premium, Business class and Economic class and enabled with Wi-Fi.
“We are proud to say we are operating 11 new aircraft and this number will grow to 12 in just 5 months from now. This gives us the capacity we need and the ability to extend our network further into the continent and beyond the continent,” he said.
The aircraft cargo capacity is 132 cubic meters, which, Mirenge said, is leading the country to its targets in air transport.
“We can carry as much as there is for our export and import market so the capacity that has always been lacking is with us today,” he said.
Rwandan biggest Airbus comes at a time RwandAir has upgraded its services to fit into the digital era.
Currently, said Mirenge, online check in has started in several stations and online booking was enabled.
Mirenge said, they are now working with the best inflight duty free distributors.
James Musoni, Minister of Infrastructure said “The entire country is celebrating an important milestone; the delivery of this new brand Airbus A 330-300. Umurage means heritage, and it is the heritage for all of us.”
Musoni said, the aviation connects people, countries and cultures and provides access to global markets and both tourism and service industry.
“We just completed Convention Center and so many other good facilities that support this tourism industry but also you are aware that we are putting up a new facility to accommodate more aircraft; a new airport, which will provide solution of space,” he said.