As you are reading this Austrian’s latest 777 addition, OE-LPE, debuted today and is enroute from Vienna and will be arriving at New York’s JFK at approximately 2:00p Eastern Time.
This marks the 5th 777 to join the fleet and is the aircraft responsible for Austrian’s ability to introduce new service to Newark that is set to begin on July 2.
The aircraft, nicknamed ‘Blue Danube’ has been completely retrofitted and sports Austrian’s new Economy and Business Class cabin that were installed while the plane underwent a thorough C-check that required over 57,000 man-hours to complete. In fact, it was AUSTRIAN’s largest ever undertaking as far as aircraft maintenance and retrofit are concerned. In all, Austrian has €50 million invested in the aircraft, including €20 for the retrofit alone.
According to Austrian, this single aircraft is responsible for the creation of 130 new jobs at the airline including 20 pilots and 90 flight attendants. Austrian expects the ‘Blue Danube’ to add €80 million in revenue and carry 170,000 passengers each year.
The aircraft is being leased from ILFC (International Lease Finance Company) and originally entered service with AeroFlot in 1998. It was also part of Vietnam Airlines’ fleet from 2005 until delivery to Austrian in March of this year.