Bahraini flag-carrier Gulf Air aims to revamp its current fleet before the first of 16 Boeing 787 aircraft on order is delivered to the carrier in 2016.
During a signing ceremony today for the 787 aircraft in Washington, DC Chairman Mahmood Hashim Al Kooheji told flightglobal.com's sister premium news site ATI: “We hope to get new aircraft in our fleet next year.” The carrier is particularly interested in the Airbus A320, he says.
Al Kooheji says Gulf Air is also interested in upgrading interiors of its existing aircraft and installing state-of-the-art in-flight entertainment (IFE).
Flight’s ACAS database shows Gulf Air flies 10 Airbus A320-200s, six A330-200s, nine A340-300s, two Boeing 737-800s and four 767-300ERs.
Gulf Air is also in the process of revamping its network, “consolidating the routes we have,” and possibly adding new destinations, the carrier’s Chairman says.
“Most likely, [we’ll] return to discontinued routes,” Al Kooheji notes, such as Singapore and Dublin. He also says Gulf Air will “add more frequencies to existing routes.”
Other markets recently cut by Gulf Air include Hong Kong, Sydney, Johannesburg and Jakarta.
Last month the airline unveiled plans to inaugurate nonstop service to Shanghai in June.
During the signing, Al Kooheji expressed interest in resurrecting US service. The carrier ceased US flights in 1997; however, Gulf Air has had a codeshare with American Airlines since 1994.
“Gulf Air is now really moving forward. Hopefully we will be flying back to the US very soon,” says Al Kooheji.
Source: flightglobal.com's sister premium news site Air Transport Intelligence news