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Eastern Airways expands fleet

11th November 2008 - 10:37 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Eastern Airways is expanding the size of its aircraft fleet with the introduction of two extra Saab 2000 aircraft.

The UK regional airline, which provides a comprehensive network of scheduled services from 18 UK and European airports along with private charter flights for blue chip companies, corporations and individual groups, has signed a lease agreement for the aircraft with the Swedish aircraft manufacturer.

Delivery of the first aircraft, serial numbers 2000-023 and 2000-055, will take place on 3 December 2008 and 15 December 2008 increasing the number of Saab 2000s in the fleet to eight.

With a cruising speed of 425mph from its two Rolls Royce engines, the Saab 2000 is one of the fastest turbo-prop aircraft in the world and is also extremely efficient with low fuel burn.

Chris Holliday, Eastern Airways' chief operating officer, said: "The Saab is ideally suited for our domestic and European network along with our charter programme and is the right choice for further route expansion into Europe. It is an extremely flexible aircraft as it can be used on both short and long runways and can also fly to eastern European and Mediterranean destinations due to its range and fast cruising speed capabilities."

"Eastern Airways are experts in seeing opportunities first and delivering durable quality of service to niche markets," said Steven Lever, Saab Aircraft Leasing's senior vice president commercial. "It's extremely pleasing that the Saab 2000 suits Eastern Airways' successful business model so well."

The 50 seat Saab 2000 aircraft was first introduced into Eastern Airways' fleet in 2004 and the airline is also the largest operator of British Aerospace Jetstream 41 aircraft in the world with 23 in total.

The carrier is one of the UK's most punctual scheduled airlines* and provides a network of services to city destinations with timings and schedule frequencies aimed specifically at business travellers.

A new daily (except Saturdays) service from Aberdeen to Oslo will be launched by Eastern Airways on 12 January 2009 using a Saab 2000.

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