MIAMI – Air France’s (AF) first Airbus A220, wearing the airline’s livery and the historical winged sea-horse logo, is out of the Montreal-Mirabel (YUL) paint shop. The type is ready for delivery, by the end of September, to continue the carrier’s efforts in its fleet modernization.
The aircraft, the first of a total order of 60 of the type, will begin the replacement of Airbus A318 and 319 on short and medium-haul flights bringing about a reduction of 20% fuel burn, thanks to the use of lighter composite materials, and reducing its noise footprint by 34%.
Sustainable Development Objectives
The aircraft will contribute to the achievement of AF’s sustainable development objectives which are set for a reduction of 50% reduction of CO² emissions on the domestic network and inter-regional routes by 2024 followed by a 50% reduction in emissions per passenger/km by 2050.
Before entering active service in Pais-Orly (ORY), the A220 will undergo the usuals ground and in-flight tests, and, once delivered, will be used for crew training and complete the already started type-rating. AF has set up two core groups, both pilots and cabin attendants which, once trained, will bear the responsibility to train colleagues under the “in-house program” framework.
Crew Training in Full Swing
Crew training has already started last September when eight instructors pilots followed eight weeks of training at the Airbus center in YUL and will continue to train other pilots, including 28 instructors, using a Full Flight Simulator (FFS) housed at the AF’s training center in Paris-Charles de Gaulle (CDG) airport.
The FFS training will be completed with 20 “hands-on” flights, when the A220 becomes available, in order to obtain the corresponding type rating. Approximately 700 AF pilots will be qualified to fly the A200-300.
Flights attendants have gone thru training in Zurich (ZRH) from September to December 2020 and are at present preparing the training manuals to be made available by September 2021. An additional 37 flight attendants have been formed to complete the training team to prepare crews for the A220 entry into service.
Two mock-up A220 models have been installed at the AF Crew Academy near ORY airport where 2500 flight attendants will go thru the training.
Besides flight crews, other sectors of the airlines, like maintenance or station personnel, are getting ready to welcome this last generation aircraft. The AF A220 is configured to carry 148 passengers in a 3-2 cabin set up, and each seat is equipped with type A and C USB ports allowing passengers to access Wi-Fi from their own devices.
Article sourced on Air France Corporate Press Release
Featured image: Air France Airbus A220-300 C-FPBQ. Photo: Air France Corporate Media