Norwegian to order widebodies to support long-haul expansion; Avianova carries 1 million passengers

Norwegian Air Shuttle CEO Bjoern Kjos stated the LCC plans to order widebody aircraft from either Boeing or Airbus in Oct-2010 as it prepares for the launch of its first long-haul routes.

The company will choose between B787 and A350 equipment, with Mr Kjos commenting: "The Dreamliner is nearest in time with regards to delivery, but Airbus is a very good product ... Of course it’s been worrisome for everybody that we’ve had delays with Boeing, but on the other hand it’s an incredibly complicated aircraft. We don’t know if the A350 will have delays. This is completely different technology, so it would almost be surprising if they didn’t."

Mr Kjos added that the new order would likely include the introduction of two aircraft initially, following by the addition of two aircraft p/a thereafter. The LCC will reach its fleet decision based on “the prices we can obtain in the market and availability”.

The carrier already has 63 B737s on order. Norwegian plans to commence services from Oslo and Stockholm to Bangkok and New York in 2H2011 and plans to add around 15 long-haul sectors over the next few years.  Share sin the carrier declined 3.5% yesterday.

Avianova  handles  1 millionth passenger

Meanwhile, Russian LCC Avianova announced it carried its one millionth passenger since commencing operations.

Selected LCCs daily share price movements (% change): 23-Sep-2010