Ryanair set to take first delivery of "Gamechanger" aircraft this month
The new aircraft will have more seats, significantly lower noise emissions and will, Ryanair says, help the airline to grow to 200 million passengers per annum over the next five years.
Ryanair has announced that it is hoping to take delivery of its first "Gamechanger" aircraft later this month.
In December of last year, the airline confirmed that it had ordered 210 of the Boeing MAX-8200 aircraft, described as a “Gamechanger”, with a total value of over $22 billion.
At the time, Ryanair said that the aircraft will be "most audited" and the "most regulated" aircraft in aviation history and described its performance as “exceptional”.
The aircraft will have capacity for eight more seats per flight, but burns 16% less fuel and lowers noise emissions by 40%.
News of the delivery of the "Gamechanger" came on Monday as Ryanair announced a full-year loss of a whopping €815 million due to the impact of Covid-19 on the aviation industry.
The figure is in stark contrast to a previous-year profit of €1,002 million up to 31 March 2020, when the Covid-19 pandemic had just began to make a dramatic impact worldwide.
In the year to 31 March 2021, Ryanair had 27.5 million customers, compared to 148.6 million passengers the year before, a drop of 81%.
Ryanair described the Financial Year 2021 as the “most challenging in Ryanair’s 35-year history” due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the associated flight bans, travel restrictions and national lockdowns.
The airline said it responded “promptly and effectively” to the crisis posed by the pandemic “by working hard to assist millions of customers with flight changes, refunds and changed travel plans”.
“We minimised job losses through agreed pay cuts and participation in government job support schemes, while at the same time keeping our pilots, cabin crew and aircraft current and ready to resume service once normality returns,” the financial year report released on Monday read.
The report added that Ryanair is looking forward to “a strong recovery in air travel, jobs and tourism” in the second half of 2021 and that strong increases in weekly bookings since the beginning of April “suggests that this recovery has already begun”.
The delivery of the "Gamechanger" aircraft is mentioned frequently in Ryanair’s financial year report, with the airline predicting the first delivery of the aircraft later this month and that it will have 60 in its fleet in total by the peak season in 2022.
All 210 aircraft ordered by Ryanair are due to be delivered by December 2024.
Ryanair says the aircraft will help grow annual passengers to 200 million per annum over the next five years, as well as helping Ryanair to lower its CO₂ and noise footprint over the next decade.