VietJetAir (VietJetAir.com) (Ho Chi Minh City) has celebrated the delivery of its first A320 ordered directly from Airbus at a special ceremony in Toulouse today (November 26). The event was attended by top management from the airline, including Vice Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao and Managing Director Luu Duc Khanhm, and witnessed by Vietnam’s Deputy Minister of Transport Pham Quy Tieu.
The delivery of the pictured new A320 marks the start of a major expansion at the airline which will see it acquire up to 100 A320 Family aircraft, including 63 on firm order with Airbus. In addition, the airline has purchase rights with Airbus for another 30 aircraft and will lease seven more from third party lessors.
VietJetAir first took to the skies on December 25, 2011 and is the first private airline in Vietnam to operate domestic and international flights. Today, the carrier operates a fleet of 17 leased A320s on a network covering Vietnam and a growing number of destinations across Asia. The 63 aircraft already on firm order with Airbus comprise 14 A320ceo, seven A321ceo and 42 A320neo.
Copyright Photo: Airbus. Airbus A320-214 F-WWBP became VN-A697 on delivery.
Malaysia’s military believes it traced the missing Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200 flight MH 370 into the Malacca Strait (northwest of Kuala Lumpur) according to this report by Reuters. According to the military, the aircraft changed course after passing over Kota Bharu and took a lower altitude and headed west to this large body of water (see map above).
Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) is still missing with 227 passengers and 12 crew members on board. The previous oil slick in the Gulf of Thailand (north of Kota Bharu) has been identified as not coming from the missing aircraft. No wreckage has been found in the Gulf of Thailand from the missing and presumed crashed airliner.
Meanwhile Malaysia has identified and issued photos of the two Iranians who used the stolen passports.