Air Caraibes fleet renewal to include A350-900s

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Caribbean operator Air Caraibes is to lease three Airbus A350-900s from US lessor ILFC as part of the carrier's fleet-modernisation programme.

Air Caraibes has previously declared an intention to take three A350-1000s.

ILFC confirms the lease of the three -900s which will be delivered from 2016-18. The lessor has 14 of the type on order, as well as six A350-800s.

Air Caraibes' long-haul fleet comprises five A330s, including a single -200. Two of the aircraft are leased from ILFC.

The carrier's supervisory board chairman, Jean-Paul Dubreuil, says the use of new aircraft and a "strong sense of service" have resulted in a "new travel experience" between the Caribbean and France.

Air Caraibes stated in 2008 that it would take three A350-1000s, configured with 440 seats, to be delivered in 2017-18. The carrier signed a memorandum of understanding for the jets.

But the carrier, which is based at Pointe-a-Pitre airport in Guadeloupe, does not have any direct orders for the A350-1000 and the source of the jets is unclear. The only lessor to have ordered the -1000 is Air Lease which has an agreement to take five.