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PIA premier service and future of Srilankan Airbus A330s

PIA Premier at London Heathrow airport its only destination at the moment. Photo by: John Taggart https://www.flickr.com/photos/tagsplanepics-lhr/

PIA is planing to send its 5 Boeing 777s for refurbishments with modern business class seats and IFE. PIA is also looking to finalise its deal with Sri Lankan Airlines to convert the wet lease of Airbus A330 into dry lease and add another Airbus A330 into its fleet.

When asked about getting the 2nd & 3rd Airbus A330 from Sri Lankan as announced earlier he said “for the time being looking at the market situation we only need two wide bodies. After this our 5 Boeing 777s are being refurbished with flat bed seats and completely new IFE system. So once they are done we will have 7 planes on premier service.”

PIA acting chairman Irfan Illahi shared this information with BBC Urdu in an interview. Irfan Illahi said that “we have trained our pilots on Arbus A330s and our crew was going on the aircrafts and they are also trained. Now we have to convert this to dry lease.”

He further added that this arrangements to train PIA crew and fly with joint crew was “for six months ending in February” and now negotiations are underway to convert to dry lease. But he said the thing that is lacking is “maintenance facilities and we are talking to other companies including Sri Lankan if they can sign an agreement for 2 years or 3 years to provide maintenance to PIA.”

He categorically said that the “premier service will run but on dry leased planes. And CAA is looking into getting one master trainer trained from Sri Lankan maintenance who will then train PIA engineers here to provide line maintenance. If PIA is going to get second A330 then it is must for their program to get their engineers trained.

Our featured photo is by John Taggart.

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