Saudia Group Orders More Than 100 New Airbus Jets

Skift Take

The huge order – one of the largest aircraft deals of the year so far – is in addition to existing deliveries bound for the Saudia Group.

Saudia Group has placed a major new order for Airbus aircraft. The company includes the national carrier of Saudi Arabia as well as its low-cost subsidiary flyadeal.

The agreement is for 105 additional planes and complements existing orders between the airline and European manufacturer. 

Of the 105 units, 93 will be of the largest A321neo variant. A further dozen will be the smaller A320neo. The deal brings the total order backlog at Airbus for the Saudia Group to 144 A320neo Family jets. 

The company flies an all-Airbus narrowbody fleet, but its larger twin-aisle jets are made by its U.S. competitor Boeing.

The agreement was announced at the Future Aviation Forum in Riyadh on Monday. It wasn’t immediately clear how the 105 aircraft would be distributed within the airline group. Flyadeal is currently an all-A320 operator, however, it does have A321s in the pipeline. 

Ibrahim Al-Omar, Director General of Saudia Group said the deal would support its “ambitious operational objectives to meet growing demand.”

He highlighted the Saudi Vision 2030 targets as a key motivation for the order. The project is aiming to attract more than 150 million tourists by the end of the decade, but it hasn’t been without controversy.

Skift recently sat down with Steven Greenway, the new chief executive of flyadeal. He described the challenges and opportunities associated with such ambitious growth. 

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