Helvetic Airways Takes Its 1st Of 4 Embraer E195-E2 Aircraft

Swiss regional airline Helvetic Airways has taken delivery of its first of four E195-E2s today. Taking possession at…

Helvetic Airways Takes Its 1st Of 4 Embraer E195-E2 Aircraft

Swiss regional airline Helvetic Airways has taken delivery of its first of four E195-E2s today. Taking possession at a virtual handover ceremony at Embraer’s headquarters in Saõ José dos Campos, the aircraft will now make a multi-stop hop across the Atlantic to arrive in Zurich on Friday.

Helvetic has taken delivery of its brand new E195-E2. Photo: Embraer

Helvetic takes its first E195-E2

The day has finally arrived! Helvetic Airways has today taken delivery of its fabulous new Embraer E195-E2 jet. But don’t go looking for it in Zurich just yet, because although the official handover has taken place, the aircraft is not due to arrive in its home base until Friday, June 25th.

The aircraft is registered HB-AZI and is the first E195-E2 for Helvetic. In total, four will arrive at the Swiss airline, all by the end of July. Helvetic previously indicated that the largest of the E2s would land in increments of approximately one every two weeks; that now seems to be accelerated with all four arriving in the next five weeks.

Helvetic E195-E2
Three more will join the fleet in the coming weeks. Photo: Helvetic Airways

The handover of the aircraft took place in Saõ José dos Campos, at the Embraer headquarters. Due to the current COVID situation, the event was conducted virtually, but that didn’t stop the celebrations from continuing. Tobias Pogorevc, CEO of Helvetic Airways, commented,

“With the delivery of the first of our four new Embraer E195-E2s, our fleet renewal is on plan to be completed by the end of July. The structural changes in the demand for air travel that have emerged in recent months vindicate the strategic choices we made back in 2018.

“With Embraer we have both the right types of aircraft and the right industry partner. Helvetic Airways now operates an optimal fleet mix in terms of capacity and sustainability. And as one of the leading E-Jet E2 operators in the world, Helvetic Airways will now be able to further strengthen its role as a Swiss airline in the European sky.”

Helvetic E195-E2
The aircraft will arrive in Zurich on Friday. Photo: Helvetic Airways

Helvetic’s newest E2 will be making a multi-stop hop from Brazil to Switzerland, starting tomorrow. From Saõ José dos Campos, the aircraft will stop in Natal and Las Palmas before arriving at Zurich. The airline states that delivery will cover around 9,900 kilometers (6,152 miles) and that the aircraft will spend around 11.5 hours in flight.

The E2 will make two stops on route to Zurich. Image: GCMaps

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Helvetic’s ambitious fleet renewal

Helvetic began its fleet transformation in 2018 when it firmed up its order with Embraer for 12 E190-E2 jets. At the time of the order, three were to be delivered in 2019, four in 2020 and five this year. These aircraft would completely replace the last of the Fokker F100s flying for the airline, as well as some of its older E190s.

The first arrived in October 2019, and in July 2020, Helvetic had the honor of taking delivery of E-jet. Embraer and Helvetic worked together to make the delivery flight a special one, with the aircraft setting the record for the fastest transatlantic flight between South America and Europe.

Helvetic E195-E2
Inside, it’s a comfortable 2-2 layout. Photo: Helvetic Airways

Just weeks after receiving this special aircraft, Helvetic announced its intentions to up gauge some of its remaining order to the larger E195-E2. The airline completed deliveries of its E190-E2s in March this year, and is now ready to welcome the first of the four largest variants to its fleet.

Helvetic E195-E2
The airline opted for power at every seat. Photo: Helvetic Airways

Helvetic is a key customer for Embraer in Europe, not only thanks to its large fleet of E2 jets. It is also unique in that it is one of only a handful of airlines operating both the original E-jet and the new E2s side by side. This has given the airline a strong position from which to compare the performance of both. Helvetic told Simple Flying that the improvements in performance from the old to the new variant have been much better than expected.

Helvetic E195-E2
The airline has commended the E2’s fuel efficiency and quiet operations. Photo: Helvetic Airways

Arjan Meijer, President & CEO of Embraer Commercial Aviation, commented on today’s handover of the first E195-E2 for Helvetic, saying,

“With the new E195-E2, Helvetic Airways is building further on its reputation as one of the most environmentally committed airlines in Europe. Not only does this aircraft consume 25% less fuel than its predecessor: its noise footprint is also 65 per cent smaller. So it’s great news for airport region communities.”

Helvetic believes that with its fleet of four E190-E1s, eight E190-E2s and soon four E195-E2s, it is well set up for the post-pandemic environment. The airline says that this mix of aircraft is perfectly right-sized for operations in Switzerland and into Europe, and for a greener future ahead.

Source : Simple Flying More   

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Edelweiss Resumes 2 Hour Airbus A340 Flights To Pristina

Edelweiss Air, the leisure airline of Lufthansa Group’s Swiss International Air Lines, is resuming widebody services to Kosovo…

Edelweiss Resumes 2 Hour Airbus A340 Flights To Pristina

Edelweiss Air, the leisure airline of Lufthansa Group’s Swiss International Air Lines, is resuming widebody services to Kosovo this summer. The Airbus A340 aircraft will make a comeback on the Zurich-Pristina route three times weekly in July and August as a capacity upgrade for the A320.

Airbus A340 aircraft will come back to Kosovo this summer. Photo: Anna Zvereva via Wikimedia

Two-hour A340 flights from Zurich to Pristina to return

Swiss International Airlines is responding to high demand between Switzerland and Kosovo again by re-introducing widebody flights on its Zurich-Pristina route through its leisure airline, Edelweiss Air.

Edelweiss will operate its Airbus A340-300 between early July and late August this summer every Monday, Thursday, and Friday for this two-hour flight.

This three-weekly scheduling of the A340 on the route is a relatively low frequency; last summer Edelweiss operated widebodies from Zurich to Pristina as much as twice daily during the peak summer months. It is likely that the A340 will make an appearance in Kosovo more often than it is currently scheduled to.

Edelweiss’ Airbus A340 aircraft feature 314 seats in total, of which 27 are in Business Class, 75 are in Economy Max, and 211 are in standard Economy. Its Business Class seats are lie flat, and its Economy Max class offers 15 centimeters (five inches) more legroom than standard Economy.

Edelweiss Airbus A340
Edelweiss’ Airbus A340 aircraft have been landing in Pristina for years now. Photo: Getty images

Stay informed:  for our daily and weekly aviation news digests.

Flight timings

The Airbus A340 will be deployed on this two-hour flight as follows:

  • Flight WK402/LX8402 departing Zurich (ZRH) for Pristina (PRN) at 06:25, arriving at 08:25 on Mondays and Thursdays, and five minutes earlier on Fridays
  • Flight LX8403 is the sole code for the return service, departing PRN at 09:55 and arriving in ZRH at 11:55 on Mondays and Thursdays, and five minutes earlier on Fridays.

On Saturdays, Edelweiss is deploying its own Airbus A320 aircraft for this rotation. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Sundays, SWISS is sending its own metal. There is also a second daily rotation on this route, in the evenings, every day, but no wide-body aircraft are scheduled to operate it (yet).

SWISS and Edelweiss will both deploy Airbus A320 aircraft between Zurich and Pristina. Photo: SWISS

Tickets for the outbound flight, from Zurich to Pristina, are on sale on SWISS’ and Edelweiss’ website, but tickets for the return leg from Pristina to Zurich are only on sale on SWISS’ website. It is standard practice for airlines operating in Kosovo to sell their tickets through tour operators and independent travel agents. This is also the case for Eurowings, which has a base in Pristina.

This means that a passenger traveling on this Edelweiss flight from Pristina to Zurich on Sundays will purchase their flights on the SWISS website, fly on a SWISS aircraft with SWISS’ crew, and even have a SWISS flight code printed on their ticket, but it will still be an Edelweiss flight.

Will you be flying on Edelweiss’s two-hour Airbus A340 services to Pristina this summer? Let us know what you think of this story in the comments below.

Source : Simple Flying More   

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