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AIR PACIFIC UPGRADES ITS FLEET; IMPROVES ITS SCHEDULE

Christens its new B737-800 aircraft in a ceremony with dignitaries and employees

Air Pacific christened the newest member of its fleet, Boeing’s 737-800 aircraft, in a ceremony attended by dignitaries, members of the business and tourist community and employees and their families.  The B737-800 is the first new aircraft added to Air Pacific’s fleet since 2003 and will take flight under Air Pacific’s banner next month.

“This is an exciting development for Air Pacific, our customers and Fiji,” said David Pflieger, Air Pacific’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer.  “Modernising our fleet with the addition of a new B737-800 will help us better meet the needs and expectations of our customers and travel industry partners.  With comfortable leather seats and more frequent and convenient flight schedules from Nadi International Airport to and from Sydney, this B737 is the latest example of how Air Pacific is transforming itself to be the preferred airline of the South Pacific,” he added. 

Beginning in January, 2012, Air Pacific plans to almost double its weekly flights from Sydney, increasing them from seven to 13 times per week with both morning and afternoon departures, and passengers will soon be able to enjoy same day connections from Nadi International Airport to Fiji’s outer islands and resorts.  In addition, visitors to Fiji will also be able to return to Sydney on either morning or evening flights.  These schedule improvements include the redeployment of Air Pacific’s B747-400 to Hong Kong, another important market fueling Air Pacific’s revitalisation.

“As Fiji’s national airline, we have a proud tradition of naming our aircraft after the islands of Fiji.  On behalf of all Air Pacific professionals whose talent, hard work, and dedication have made changes and improvements like this possible, it is with great pleasure that we christen our newest aircraft Mamanuca Islands.  These idyllic islands are among those that make a tremendous contribution to Fiji’s economy and well-earned reputation as a South Pacific paradise destination.  It’s only fitting that our newest and most modern aircraft bears the name of some of Fiji’s beautiful outer islands,” said Mr. Pflieger.

With the addition of the B737, Air Pacific will retire a larger and much older Boeing 767 aircraft in January of next year.  “In line with our own commitments towards a more sustainable and “greener” environment, and compared to our other 737s, our new aircraft will save over 90,000 gallons of fuel a year, which is around F$0.5million at today’s fuel prices.  That means almost 1000 metric tonnes less carbon dioxide emissions through lower fuel burn, a particularly important and significant development for Fiji and Fiji’s national airline.” observed Mr. Pflieger.

Air Pacific has confirmed that despite the changes to its fleet, it expects to have the capacity to meet the weekly cargo capacity demands when it implements the new schedule changes for Australia flights in January of next year.

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