Croatia Airlines outlines A220 fleet transition plans

Croatia Airlines is preparing to transition to a single-type A220 fleet with the carrier seeing the arrival of the aircraft as an opportunity to turn around its business. The company recently announced the first aircraft would arrive during the second quarter of next year, however, initially the plan was for one A220 to arrive in February 2024 and the second in April with the aim for the jets to enter the fleet before the height of the summer season. However, this has been slightly pushed back for unspecified reasons. The airline will take its first six A220s from the Air Lease Corporation in 2024 and 2025, while another six will arrive factory-fresh from Airbus in 2025 and 2026. “Airbus didn’t have aircraft available until 2025 and 2026 so we will first take delivery of planes from the leasing company. All aircraft will be financed through an operating lease”, Croatia Airlines’ CEO, Jasmin Bajić, said recently. An operating lease is a contract that allows for the aircraft’s use but does not give Croatia Airlines ownership rights. These leases will allow the carrier to use the jets without incurring the high expenses involved in purchasing it.

The CEO explained the aircraft order includes pilot training for the new type, which will begin this year. “Taking delivery of new aircraft and phasing out old ones is a huge job that requires the commitment of everyone in the company, because it is a major project that necessitates all of us to give it our all. At one point we will have three aircraft types in our fleet, which is operationally, financially and in every other sense very demanding”, Mr Bajić said. He added, “The Dash 8s and two Airbuses are owned by leasing companies and their fate depends on their owners. On the other hand, we own five Airbuses, and in time we will decide what to do with them. In most cases, older aircraft are used for spare parts”.
Commenting further on the incoming A220s, Mr Bajić noted, “Similar to back in the 2000s when we were the airline with the youngest fleet with our current Airbuses, in 2024 we will have the most modern fleet with the new Airbuses. The on-board experience will be elevated. We will have three different Internet packages on board, chargers for mobile phones, as well as USB A and USB C ports in each seat. I am convinced passengers will be satisfied. These are new planes, new technology, the aircraft are much quieter and more environmentally friendly”. Mr Bajić previously said the carrier’s network will be adjusted as the new aircraft arrive, with an emphasis to be put on winter operations from secondary cities in Croatia. 
Swiss Aviation Software, a subsidiary of Lufthansa Technic, has announced a strategic partnership with Croatia Airlines. The collaboration will see the implementation of Aircraft Maintenance and Operational Support (AMOS), a comprehensive software solution designed to optimise and streamline the airline’s maintenance and engineering operations for the incoming A220s. “We are delighted to announce that Croatia Airlines will be introducing new, more comprehensive MRO software system AMOS for our operations. After considering a number of options, the strategic decision was made to use AMOS as our main platform to support our Part-CAMO, Part-145, Logistics and Finance, as well as third-party requirements. AMOS was selected as our future platform, due to its compatibility and wide industry usage, strong customer focus, easy transition and integration, regulatory framework (EASA), cost reduction and productivity efficiency. Choosing the right platform for our company was crucial, as we needed a product that would have the capability to go well beyond the requested scope, and would provide Croatia Airlines with a long-term strategic advantage. We are looking forward to implementing AMOS as our new software system in the near future”, Mr Bajić concluded.

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