New figures show the airline carried more passengers in the first nine months of 2013 than Spanish rival Iberia, making it Spain’s biggest airline by passenger numbers.
The Dreamliner order follows Air Europa’s move last month to buy eight B737s. Reuters quoted an airline spokesman as saying the Dreamliners would enter its fleet from 2020 onwards.
Skyteam member Air Europa operates a network 43 destinations in 17 countries, focusing on Latin American, European and African routes through it Madrid hub. Rival Iberia’s bid to return to profitability has seen it redesign its route network, leaving Air Europa to pick up some routes, such as Madrid–Montevideo. According to airport operator Aena, Air Europa carried about 10.5 million passengers in the first nine months of the year, 450,000 more than Iberia.
Figures from Eurocontrol show that in August Air Europa operated 214 flights a day, compared with Iberia’s 207. Colin Stewart, Air Europa’s UK general manager said: “In 2014 and beyond, we intend to consolidate our status as the airline of choice to Latin America for leisure and business travel, connecting the UK and Europe to the region with great value for money and dedication to our passengers.”
“Over the past year we have introduced new routes Santa Cruz, Montevideo and, as of this December, Sao Paulo, underlining our long-term investment in, and commitment to, the region,” he added.