Latvian airline airBaltic has introduced an Airbus A220 Level D full-flight simulator (FFS) in its training facilities adjacent to Riga International Airport. It is the first new FFS ever purchased by a Latvian company.
On its way to becoming an all-Airbus A220-300 aircraft operator and to serve its growing pilot training needs, the largest schedule airline in the Baltic region has acquired a fully equipped CAE7000XR Series simulator that meets the qualifications of the latest European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issue two requirements, including performance-based navigation and upset prevention and recovery training capabilities.
“We will be introducing a single fleet type of up to 80 Airbus A220-300 aircraft and this means that, in the upcoming years, we will train hundreds of our existing and future pilots. We are truly delighted that now we have a state-of-the-art full-flight simulator located right next to our headquarters. This makes the studying process for our pilots more efficient and accessible. It is also a great opportunity for the further development of our airBaltic Training division, as such an advanced simulator opens various new opportunities,” stresses Martin Gauss, chief executive of airBaltic.
airBaltic Training, a subsidiary of the airline, offers a range of aviation training services at its Riga centre. It was established in 2010 and each year since then has provided training to approximately 3,000 professionals from across the world – more than 1,500 pilots, almost 1,000 cabin crew members and several hundreds of ground handlers, cargo agents, security personnel and others.
In the meantime, as the fleet size of airBaltic’s Airbus A220-300 aircraft is growing and in order to serve increasing numbers of Lithuanian passengers, the Latvian airline has stationed one of its A220s at Vilnius as of December 2.
According to Gauss: “As a growing number of Lithuanian passengers choose to use our direct services from Vilnius, we are now able to upgrade our services to a more comfortable and greener aircraft. The Airbus A220-300 offers a higher level of comfort and is the quietest aircraft in its category.”
During the first nine months of 2019, airBaltic transported more than 390,000, or 18 per cent more passengers, in Lithuania than in the same period last year.
From Vilnius, airBaltic offers direct flights to Amsterdam, Berlin, Munich, Paris, Tallinn and Riga, collectively accounting for eight per cent of the Lithuanian capital airport’s passenger traffic business.
The airBaltic fleet consists of 37 aircraft: 21 Airbus A220-300s, four Boeing 737s and 12 Bombardier Q400 turboprpops.
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