Tibet Airlines, a newly established Chinese airline based in Lhasa, Tibetan autonomous region of China, has taken delivery of its first Airbus A319, becoming Airbus’ newest operator in China. This aircraft is the first out of three A319s, an order which was placed in May 2010.
Tibet Airlines’ A319 accommodates 128 passengers in a two-class configuration, with eight seats in premium and 120 in economy class. The aircraft is powered by CFM56-5B engines.
The aircraft will operate at the highest airports in the world such as Ali Kunsha, Tibet, which is above 14,000ft, and fly RNP-AR (Required Navigation Performance - Authorisation Required) procedures from Beijing and Chengdu to Lhasa and other regional routes.
RNP-AR procedures represent today the most modern navigation technique, allowing the aircraft to fly precisely along a predefined route using on-board navigation systems and the GPS-based ‘Global Navigation Satellite System’ (GNSS). RNP AR is especially important for operators, who have their base at a high altitude airport. Tibet Airlines has selected Quovadis as its strategic partner for its RNP-AR operations.
“I am confident, the proven high altitude flight performance of the A319 will enable us to offer our passengers the highest level of comfort on the highest altitude routes”, said Xu Bo, Chairman of Tibet Airlines. “We aim to build a regional network covering all civil airports in Lhasa, Tibetan autonomous region.”
“We are honored that our modern Airbus A319 aircraft will contribute to the development of civil aviation on the Tibetan plateau and we warmly welcome Tibet Airlines as our new operator”, said Airbus China President Laurence Barron. “Today, over 85 percent of the commercial flights to and from Tibet are already performed with an Airbus aircraft. We are now pleased that this number will rise further with Tibet Airlines’ RNP capable A319s.”
The A320 Family (A318, A319, A320 and A321) is recognized as the benchmark single-aisle aircraft family. With more than 7000 aircraft sold, and over 4,700 aircraft delivered to more than 330 customers and operators worldwide, the A320 Family is the world’s best-selling single-aisle aircraft family. With 99.7 per cent reliability and extended servicing periods, the A320 Family has the lowest operating costs of any single aisle aircraft. Uniquely, the A320 Family offers a containerized cargo system, which is compatible with the worldwide standard wide-body system.