Air Seychelles to receive new planes

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According to eTurboNews, Air Seychelles has announced the purchase of three Viking Air DHC-6 Twin Otter Series 400 aircraft, in a deal which will renew the island carrier’s domestic fleet.

The new aircraft will be used for services between Mahe and Praslin, as well as other islands in the archipelago, including Bird, Denis and Fregate.

All three aircraft deliveries are scheduled for delivery in mid-2015. The airline currently operates one Viking Air DHC-6 Twin Otter Series 400 and three Series 300 aircraft.

Cramer Ball, Air Seychelles Chief Executive Officer said: “Once delivered, the new aircraft will replace our three existing DHC-6 Series 300 Twin Otters, forming the backbone of a younger Air Seychelles domestic fleet. The aircraft will secure the future of our inter-island services, Seychelles tourism and our economy.”

Ball added that the Canadian-built 19-seat twin engine Pratt & Whitney PT6A-34 aircraft are ideally suited for short sector flying, being able to land on rugged, short airstrips, and have little trouble operating in a saline and humid environment. “These aircraft are designed for short take-offs and landings, and are robust in extreme conditions – something we have had a lot of experience with in the Seychelles since the Twin Otters were first introduced here in the early 1980s,” Ball said.

Air Seychelles has had a busy year – the carrier has introduced a second Airbus A330-200, launched services to Hong Kong, signed codeshare agreements with airberlin, South African Airways and Czech Airlines, expanded the number of codeshare destinations with equity partner Etihad Airways, witnessed surging passenger growth in its domestic services, and posted its first profit in three years.