JEDDAH: ARAB NEWS
Published — Monday 20 May 2013
Last update 20 May 2013 5:39 am
Boeing has delivered a 777-300ER (Extended Range) plane to Saudia, marking the latest milestone in its longstanding relationship with the airline and the Kingdom.
The airplane, the first of its type to be fitted with a three-class cabin configuration for Saudia, was delivered to the airline at a ceremony in Everett, Washington.
Among those in attendance were Abdul Aziz Al-Hazmi, deputy director general, Saudia, and Marty Bentrott, vice president — sales, Middle East, Russia & Central Asia, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
Top executives of Boeing and Saudia as well as representatives from the media attended the ceremony.
Saudia currently has a backlog of 21 Boeing airplanes on order, including 13 777s and eight 787 Dreamliners.
“This latest addition to our fleet will feature our distinctive First, Business and Guest class cabins, allowing us to offer a full range of services tailored to our passengers’ specific needs,” said Abdul Aziz Al-Hazmi, deputy director general, Saudia.
“The Boeing 777-300ER, with its unrivaled fuel efficiency, reliability and passenger comfort, will form the backbone of our long-haul fleet, allowing Saudia to launch direct flights to Los Angeles and Toronto,” he said.
The Boeing 777-300ER is the largest long-range twin-engine commercial airplane in the world, bringing efficiency and reliability to the long-range market.
The airplane carries 386 passengers up to 7,825 nautical miles (14,450 km).
Marty Bentrott, vice president — sales, Middle East, Russia and Central Asia, Boeing Commercial Airplanes, said: “Boeing and Saudia share a uniquely historical relationship. It was a DC-3 that was used to launch the airline in 1945. A Boeing 707 ushered it into the jet age in 1961 and, today, we’re proud of the pivotal role the Boeing 777 will play in Saudia’s ambitious expansion plans.”
Bentrott said: “We look forward to building on our successful partnership and to continuing our unwavering support for Saudia’s long-term growth strategy.”
The aircraft formed the basis for the launch of Saudia.
The airline took delivery of its first 777, a 777-200ER, in December 1997 and currently owns and operates 29 Boeing models.