The Edition


Mega to begin flights to India, Lanka with new aircraft

Fathmath Shaahunaz
26 September 2016, MVT 13:16
Mega Maldives' latest addition to its fleet: the Boeing 737-800 aircraft. PHOTO/MEGA MALDIVES
Fathmath Shaahunaz
26 September 2016, MVT 13:16

Local aviation giant Mega Maldives Airlines announced plans to commence operations to new destinations including India and Sri Lanka with the newest addition to its fleet.

In a statement, Mega Maldives disclosed that it had added a Boeing 737-800 aircraft to its fleet. The plane, which had been commissioned four years prior, features 12 business class seats and 156 economy class seats.

According to Mega Maldives, the aircraft was leased by Czech operator Travel Service, but bears the design and airline logo of Mega Maldives. The aircraft also features the logo of “Visit Maldives Year”, the ongoing major tourism promotion campaign, on both sides.

Mega Maldives’ CEO George Weinmann disclosed that a backup aircraft has also been secured under its agreement with Travel Service. Weinmann added that the new aircraft’s design allows Mega Maldives to increase its passengers and cargo to even its furthest destination of Hong Kong.

India’s Ministry of Civil Aviation had authorised Mega Maldives to commence operations to the South Asian neighbour on August 17.

The airline revealed in its statement that it also plans to recommence flights to Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur and Saudi Arabia’s Jeddah. However, Mega plans to use the larger model of Boeing 767 for these operations instead of its newest aircraft.

Founded collaboratively between an American firm and a local company in 2009, Mega Maldives is recently facing financial obstacles with the decline in the number of tourists from China to the archipelago. Consequently, the airline had annulled 65 positions and laid off a significant fraction of its work force last month, planning to restructure the company.