MIAMI – Guangzhou-based China Southern Airlines has taken delivery of its first of 20 Airbus A350-900 aircraft.

With this new delivery, China Southern becomes the newest operator of the Airbus A350 aircraft family, which has proven to be a remarkable addition to airlines with long- and ultra-long-haul ambitions.

The plane was spotted for the first time in Toulouse sporting the airline’s full livery in early June. It only took a couple of weeks between leaving the paint hangar until getting delivered.

Photo: Clément Alloing

The state-owned airline is China’s largest carrier, with 615 aircraft and more than 100,000 employees stationed around the globe. China Southern operates more than 3,000 daily flights to 224 destinations in 40 countries.

The A350 will join the carrier’s vastly diverse and growing fleet, comprised of 22 Airbus A319s, 136 A320s, 124 A321s, 48 A330s, five A380s, 215 Boeing 737s, two 747s, 24 777s, 21 787 Dreamliners, and 18 Embraer E190s.

China Southern’s new A350-900 features a modern three-class cabin layout fitted with a total of 314 seats, broken down as, 28 Business, 24 Premium Economy, and 262 Economy Class seats.

Photo: Clément Alloing

The airline’s A350 will launch operations on domestic flights in China between its hubs in Guangzhou, Shanghai, and Beijing, which will then be shortly followed by an international deployment.

China Southern’s delivery program of the A350 aircraft will see the carrier receiving six aircraft in 2019, six in 2020, four in 2021 and four in 2022.

Tan Wangeng, President of China Southern explained that “with its very long range capability, economic fuel consumption and spacious cabin, the Airbus A350 XWB is the ideal choice for our international long haul routes”.

“The introduction of the A350 XWB will help to strengthen our position as one of the world’s leading international carriers.”