Virgin Blue to take line production A330s

Melbourne
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Virgin Blue will take delivery of two line production Airbus A330-200 aircraft next year, the first time it will acquire brand-new Airbus jets.

The aircraft will be "factory fresh straight from the production line", a spokesman confirms.

They will be leased from Aircastle and CIT, according to sources familiar with the matter. The airline as practice does not disclose its lessors.

Virgin Blue announced the pair of aircraft last November as a follow-up lease to the initial pair disclosed last August.

On 5 March the carrier's first A330-200 arrived in Australia in an all-white scheme and is being used for crew training, the spokesman says.

The initial two aircraft, on lease from BOC, will be deployed on domestic transcontinental flights between Sydney and Perth in May, ramping up to a thrice-daily service in June. They will operate under the carrier's domestic division.

Services for the second pair of A330-200 aircraft have not been announced, but sources say the airline is evaluating Asian destinations for the aircraft.